Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Who's in charge at the Herald?

Mindy Marqués and Rick Hirsch
Who's in charge at the Miami Herald?

That's the question many on the fifth floor at One Herald Plaza are asking these days.

On paper, Aminda "Mindy" Marqués Gonzalez is the boss.

She was named executive editor of the Herald in October, 2010.

But a source tells me her role of late is that of an "absentee landlord."

"[Managing editor] Rick Hirsch runs the paper," the source told me. "Mindy's never there and when she is she can't seem to find the time to address any problems."

Said another source, "She's in over her head."

One Miami journalist tells me that some see Marqués as the Herald's first editor who didn't come up through the ranks in the traditional sense.

A close examination of Marqués' résumé backs up that observation.
Starting with The Herald in 1986, she spent nine years as a reporter, covering a Hialeah Santeria case that went to the U.S. Supreme Court. She then became an editor, overseeing government coverage as well as other news operations.

In 2002, she became Miami bureau chief for People magazine. She returned to The Herald in 2007 for the launch of the Miami.com entertainment site, before becoming executive features editor and senior editor for news.
Bureau chief of a gossip mag and executive features editor? Fluff and more fluff.

Perhaps that explains her aversion to hard news.

Mindy may not have been our first choice to run Miami's only daily; but here at Random Pixels we are a strong believer in the old Texas saying, "You dance with the one that brung you."

Sure, her résumé is a little spotty. But we think we have a solution.

A crash course in old school journalism courtesy of some great filmmakers.

Here's the plan Mindy.

Sometime between now and Friday, log on to Netflix and order 6 or 7 movies from this list of Top 10 Great Newspaper Films.

Next, hit Publix and lay on a supply of snacks: nacho chips and salsa might be good. Three or four pints of Ben and Jerry's Cherry Garcia would be better.

Then go home and curl up in front of telly and watch some great film treatments of good old-fashioned American journalism the way it used to be done. Sure, some of them are fictional. But they also show newspapers in their heyday.

Some of the scenes in "All the President;s Men" still give me goosebumps.

I hope they do the same for you.


Ace in the Hole (1951)

Deadline U.S.A. (1952)

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