Saturday, June 30, 2007

Wyatt makes transition into retirement

Martin Wyatt, who retired in January after 24 years as a sports anchor at KGO-TV, says he doesn't stay up to watch the 11 p.m. news anymore. Now that he's retired it's early to bed, writes the Oakland Tribune's Dave Newhouse.

Wyatt was asked by KGO-TV brass two years ago how much longer he wanted to work and he picked this year to retire.

"I didn't want to be the old guy saying, 'This is the way we used to do it,'" said Wyatt, 65. "And the business is changing so fast; it's different from when I started. Very, very different."

Wyatt also reveals that he kept 60 suits and five tuxedos in his closet for his on-air work and frequent master-of-ceremonies gigs. Now he's donated the bulk of the wardrobe to charities.

Newhouse notes that Wyatt was born Simeon Martinez Wyatt III. In 1972, he became Jamal Abdul-Kabir. Jamal means "kind, generous," Abdul "servant," Kabir "the great god." He is Jamal Abdul-Kabir on his driver's license, Newhouse reports.

Rich Ramirez always said 'Thank you'

Merc columnist L.A. Chung writes in today's edition:
    Sometimes it takes an unexpected moment in our lives to cause us to stop and take stock. Slow down. Remember your family and friends, and what your community means . . . and your place in it.

    The death of a beloved colleague, Rich Ramirez [pictured], did that for me. Rich always said, "Thank you." And more.

    Those few basics are universal and glue us together in this world. Rich remembered to practice their care and cultivation in abundance, with fierce loyalty and pride.

Ch. 42 becomes a Spanish independent

Pappas Telecasting's KTNC Channel 42 is dropping its affiliation with the Azteca network today and will become an independent, though still a Spanish-language station. Azteca will now be broadcast on one of KBWB-TV Channel 20's digital multicast channels (20.4). As part of the transition to digital television, a single station can now provide multiple channels of separate programming simultaneously, free and over the air. Each separate program stream is called a multicast. The local Azteca feed will also be available on Comcast and DirecTV locally.

Meanwhile, new programs on Channel 42 will include the hit talk show "Marta Susana," the entertainment gossip show "Paparazzi," and novelas new to the United States such as "Dueña y Señora," said Fernando Acosta, vice president of Pappas Telecasting. Sports programming will feature up-to-the minute coverage of Mexican League Soccer.

Pappas, based in Visalia, is rolling out the new schedule on KTNC as well as former Azteca affiliates it owns in Reno, Omaha and Houston. By December, the company hopes to add 16 more markets. Pappas said in March it was dropping Azteca due to low ratings. Azteca, which is an arm of a major Mexican TV network, has also been a feud with NBC Universal over its attempts to expand its Telemundo network in Mexico. The Pappas family also owns San Francisco's newest radio station, 50,000-watt KTRB-AM 860.

SPJ now accepting contest entries

The Society of Professional Journalists' Northern California Chapter is now accepting entries for the 2007 Excellence in Journalism Awards. Click here to download an entry form. The awards honor the best in Bay Area print, broadcast, and online journalism. This year daily and non-daily print entries will be judged separately in several categories. All entries must be postmarked by Aug. 3. Winners will be announced in September and honored at an awards dinner on Nov. 8.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Union protest over Merc outsourcing

About 50 members and supporters of the Media Workers Union picketed the MediaNews-owned Mercury News over the shutdown of the paper's advertising composing room and the outsourcing of its work to India, the Merc reported today. Guild executive officer Luther Jackson joined demonstrators Tuesday in a show of solidarity. A total of 28 jobs will be eliminated next week, said Gloria La Riva, president of the typographical sector of the Northern California Media Workers Union.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Newspaper reveals names of its owners

East Bay Express editor Steven Buel today identified his seven partners who helped him purchase the weekly newspaper from the Village Voice Media chain. When he bought the paper May 17, he refused to identify some of the investors, which resulted in criticism from readers (see comments) and the editor of the rival Berkeley Daily Planet, Becky O'Malley. Three of the investors are from Kansas City and one from Monterey. The investors, besides Buel, are:
    • Gary Jenkins of Kansas City, a founding partner of Punch Software;

    • Paul Ung, an Oakland resident currently serving as a spokesman for the United Nations peacekeeping mission in Liberia;

    • Hal Brody, founded a Kansas City alt-weekly known as The Pitch, now involved in other businesses including real estate;

    • Kelly Vance, an original investor in the East Bay Express in 1978, currently arts and entertainment calendar editor;

    • Rick Watkins, president of Watkins & Company, a real estate development and brokerage firm based in Kansas City;

    • Jay Youngdahl, managing partner of The Youngdahl Law Firm, specializing in labor law representing workers;

    • Bradley Zeve, founded Coast Weekly, now the Monterey County Weekly, in 1988.
Buel has more detailed bios about his partners on his blog. The names of Brody, Zeve and Vance were disclosed by the Express previously. Jenkins, Ung, Watkins and Youngdahl are new.

Newspaper isn't releasing tape in shooting

The Daily Review in Hayward has turned down a request by police to surrender an audio tape of the shooting of a 24-year-old man by an off-duty rookie cop, NBC 11 reports.

Daily Review reporter Alejandro Alfonso said in his story that the newspaper obtained the 33-second answering machine tape from the "person who received the message and asked not to be identified." The tape captures the final moments in the life of Lotu Elika, who died when he was shot by an off-duty San Leandro police officer on June 20 in Hayward.

Police aren't giving up in their pursuit of the tape. "The next step would be to write a court order requesting the tape," Reid Linblom of the Hayward Police Department told NBC 11.

Ironically, police are also withholding information — they have refused to identify the off-duty officer who killed Elika.

Ramirez's death brings outpouring of grief

Rich Ramirez's unexpected death June 20 drew an outpouring of grief and fond reminiscing from friends and colleagues around the country, the Merc's Brandon Bailey writes.
    In his 23 years at the Mercury News, where he was known for his wry smile and gentle manners, Ramirez held several positions as a reporter and editor. At times over the past 12 years his duties included sometimes thankless tasks, such as putting together a newsroom budget and dealing — always politely — with reader complaints.

    "He was always willing to do for the paper what other people weren't willing to do," said Jerry Ceppos, former Mercury News executive editor who at one time was Ramirez's boss.

    Ramirez always took great pride in the paper, said his wife, Janet Dalke. He was an avid bicyclist who also loved swimming, photography and their fox terrier, "Bailey." He was passionately devoted to his alma mater, the University of Southern California. But Dalke said work was a major focus of his life.

    Although somewhat reserved by nature, Ramirez did not stay hidden in his cubicle. He organized community outreach efforts for the newspaper and also maintained a network of contacts throughout the journalism world.
Services will begin at noon Thursday at First Unitarian Church, 160 N. Third St., San Jose. Donations may be sent to the USC Annenberg School of Journalism, in care of Josh Larsen, 3502 Watt Way, Suite 304, Los Angeles, 90089, or call (213) 821-1660 for information.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Ramirez was job hunting before death

Merc Managing Editor David Satterfield tells E&P: "I dealt closely with Rich [Ramirez] Monday and Tuesday before his death. We had several conversations and he was troubled by some things. We talked at length about them. They were private matters unrelated to work. We had assured him that he was going to have a job at the newspaper after the layoffs."

The Merc said in a story Thursday that Executive Editor Carole Leigh Hutton had told Ramirez, 44, that his job as assistant to the executive editor would likely be eliminated, but she talked with him about moving to a different job in the newsroom. She was quoted as saying, "He and I had a conversation in which I told him he was extremely unlikely to be laid off."

David Yarnold, Merc executive editor from 1999 to 2003, told E&P that Ramirez had been job hunting for the past 18 months and asked to use him as a reference.

Satterfield said Ramirez made no mention of suicide or being depressed enought to take his life: “He contacted me about some things and things at the conference that really troubled him.”

Ramirez organized the National Association of Hispanic Journalists in San Jose June 18 and 19.

Ramirez’s wife, Janet Dalke, said her husband was “under severe stress” prior to his death, but did not know what might have occurred at the conference to prompt his concerns. “He came back from a conference simply exhausted,” she told E&P. “He was not the husband who left. I had no idea what happened. He was under severe pressure.”

Monday, June 25, 2007

Zacchino, Davidson, Lelchuk leaving Chron

Here are three more names to add to the list of Chronicle staffers who are leaving — Deputy Editor Narda Zacchino (left) and reporters Keay Davidson (middle) and Ilene Lelchuk.

Zacchino has been at the Chron since May 2001 after 30 years at the L.A. Times. Zacchino is co-authoring a book for Hyperion with Mary Tillman, mother of Pat Tillman, the former NFL player killed by other American soldiers in Afghanistan, the blog LA Observed notes. Zacchino is married to syndicated columnist Robert Scheer.

Davidson, an award-winning science writer, has been at the Chron since Hearst bought it in 2000 and was with the Hearst owned Examiner from 1986 to 2000. The write-up about him on the SFgate's "Colleagues Remembered" page said he thinks of his time at the Ex as "the happiest 14 years of my life."
    It was a hideaway for eccentrics, bohemians and semi-closeted radicals -- "the kind of place where I could use a bag of macadamia nut cookies to bribe an editor into publishing a particularly witty or acerbic line of prose." That contrasts with the Chronicle, "a drably lit place where macadamia nut cookies are regarded as the Anti-christ." Henceforth, Davidson looks forward to a long unemployment, during which time he will try to finish the "comically overdue" [book on late Thomas S. Kuhn -- the historian who coined the term "paradigm shifts"]
Lelchuk went from the Ex to the Chron, eventually landing the City Hall beat. Among her scoops was uncovering Assessor Mabel Teng's gift of jobs to her friends and supporters, revelations that led to Tang's resignation. She spent the last year covering youth and family trends. (Photo credits: Leichuk, Davidson are from SFgate; Zacchino from Women's Enews)

Par Ridder admits taking company data

Former St. Paul Pioneer Press publisher Par Ridder now admits he took confidential information from his old employer to his new job as publisher of the Star Tribune of Minneapolis. In videotaped testimony played today in a Minneapolis courtroom, the son of former Knight Ridder CEO and chairman Tony Ridder acknowledged copying confidential financial documents from his Pioneer Press computer onto a portable computer drive and taking them to the Star Tribune, according to the Associated Press. He also acknowledged sharing some of that data on advertising, profits and personnel matters with Star Tribune officials, including members of its operating committee. Dean Singleton, who operates the Pioneer Press and controls most of the newspapers in the Bay Area, was sitting in the courtroom when the testimony was played. Singleton is suing Ridder.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Police: Don't jump to conclusions

A Livermore police detective investigating the death of Mercury News journalist Rich Ramirez says the case hasn't been confirmed as a suicide because the evidence so far is inconclusive. On Friday, the Merc posted a story saying Ramirez, who died Wednesday in the back yard of his home in Livermore from a knife wound to the mid-section, had been worried about layoffs at the MediaNews Group-owned paper and upset over an undisclosed incident at a convention of Hispanic journalists he had organized.

(Photo: Ramirez, left, holds up the stack of awards the Mercury News won during at this month's Peninsula Press Club awards dinner. Photo by Paul Sakuma, AP)

"[A]t face value, it does have the appearance of a suicide, but it could be at the hands of another," Detective Jason Boberg told E&P. "There is a definite possibility of suicide, but it is premature to actually call it that. The injuries, while they could be at his own hand, could have been at the hands of another."

Boberg also said: "At this point, that is one of the biggest things under investigation. If it is a suicide, what would be the motive?"

Friday's Merc story did not say what upset Ramirez at last week's National Association of Hispanic Journalists convention in San Jose. One of the convention's speakers, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, made headlines when he urged immigrants to turn off Spanish-language TV in order to learn English faster.

The association posted the following statement on its Web site:
    The National Association of Hispanic Journalists expresses its deepest condolences to the family, friends and colleagues of Rich Ramirez. Rich, a veteran journalist and assistant to the executive editor at the San Jose Mercury News, was found dead in his home in Livermore, California on Wednesday. He was 44.

    Ramirez, a member of NAHJ, dedicated many hours to the planning and organization of the 25th Anniversary NAHJ Convention and Career & Media Expo held in downtown San Jose last week. He served as chair of the local planning committee, was considered a key part of some of the logistical planning, and recruited and coordinated the many volunteers on site that helped make the convention a success.

    Members of the shocked NAHJ staff who worked closely with Ramirez before and during the convention said he was always at the ready, no matter the task, with no complaints ever crossing his lips. NAHJ President Rafael Olmeda posted the following response on alongside the many other comments from readers and the San Jose community that learned of his death.

    “The last time I saw Rich was Sunday, June 17, the morning after the NAHJ convention in San Jose. Rich walked into the NAHJ board meeting before it started because he wanted to thank the board for giving him the opportunity to volunteer for our cause.

    “Imagine that. He took on the role of chairing the local planning committee. He was the ‘logistics chair,’ responsible for making sure everything ran smoothly and that all the pieces of the gigantic planning puzzle fit into a cohesive whole. He was an unsung hero of what was, by all accounts, a successful convention that struck an optimistic tone in an industry that lately has not seen much cause for optimism.

    “And there he was, thanking us for the opportunity we gave him. Naturally, we turned the tables and expressed to him our deep appreciation for the hard work he put into making the convention a success. NAHJ staffers later told me that in one short week, he became an integral part of the NAHJ family.

    “We lost a fighter in Rich Ramirez. We lost a humble man who sought an opportunity to serve a cause that was greater than himself, greater than his own career. We were fortunate to have known him, and we are heartbroken that he is no longer with us.”

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Suicide suspected in Merc editor's death

UPDATE TO AN ITEM POSTED EARLIER TODAY: Tonight the Mercury News is reporting that there are indications that the paper's Rich Ramirez, whose body was found in the back yard of his home in Livermore on Wednesday, took his own life. The 44-year-old Ramirez, who was the assistant to the executive editor, died of a self-inflicted knife wound to the mid-section, the Merc reports.

The Merc said the exact reasons why he would have taken his own life are unclear.

He had been worried about the newspaper's plans to eliminate about 40 newsroom jobs, said his wife, Janet Dalke. Executive Editor Carole Leigh Hutton said she told him that it was "extremely unlikely" he would be laid off, but she suggested he move to a different job in the newsroom because his job was likely to be eliminated.

Ramirez had been upset about something that happened during a recent national journalism convention that he helped to organize, and he talked about it with his wife and Managing Editor David Satterfield. They declined to provide specifics, the Merc said. Leaders of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists have credited Ramirez with working long hours to make the convention a success.
    "More than 200 people gathered for an informal memorial Thursday afternoon outside the Mercury News building, where they shared stories about Ramirez's diligence and devotion to the newspaper, his soft-spoken good nature and generosity to friends.

    "In his honor, many wore ribbons of cardinal and gold — the colors of his beloved University of Southern California, where Ramirez was editor of the student newspaper in 1984."
(Photo credit: Peninsula Press Club -- Ramirez was photographed during this year's award's banquet.)

FCC concerns force tape-delay of gay parade

KRON-TV won't air Sunday's LGBT Pride Parade live on Channel 4, as it has done in previous years, because the station is worried it might lose its license if something unexpected ends up on the air.

Channel 4's license is up for renewal this year and the station has already had a serious run-in with the Federal Communications Commission. In 2004, the FCC fined KRON $27,500 for airing a live news segment in which a performer from a stage show called "Puppetry of the Penis" unexpectedly flashed his genitals.

"We all feel badly that we have to do what we have to do here. It's really not a decision we have chosen," KRON vice president and station manager Pat Patton told the Bay Area Record, a LGBT newspaper. "We simply couldn't take the chance."

KRON will still cover Sunday's parade live, but will put the signal on Comcast cable channel 99 and on the Internet over Clear Channel's The FCC doesn't regulate cable or the Internet.

KRON will air an edited version of the parade on Channel 4 Sunday night at 7. The change means the parade will have a larger audience than it would if it aired during the day.

Driver in Halberstam crash to face charge

A UC Berkeley journalism graduate student who was behind the wheel when Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist David Halberstam (pictured) was killed in a car crash will be charged with misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter, a prosecutor said today, according to the AP and the Mercury News. Kevin Jones, 26, could get up to a year in jail and a fine of $1,000 if convicted. Jones had volunteered to chauffeur Halberstam, the 73-year-old former New York Times reporter and nationally-acclaimed author, from Berkeley to Palo Alto to interview Pro Football Hall of Famer Y.A. Tittle for a new book. The crash on April 23 occurred at the intersection of Bayfront Expressway and Willow Road in Menlo Park and involved three cars. Jones was attempting to make a left-hand turn against a red light when his 1989 Toyota Camry and collided with an Infiniti, according to San Mateo County Chief Deputy District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe.

New editor for San Mateo County Times

Glenn Rabinowitz, previously copy desk chief for the San Jose Mercury News, has been named executive editor of the San Mateo County Times, replacing John Bowman, who resigned in May. Rabinowitz, 43, has worked in newsrooms since age 13 and has held almost every position, from editorial jobs to page designer. He served as managing editor of the San Bernardino County Sun from October 2000 to July 2005. "My goal is to improve the local news coverage in San Mateo County and provide the type of in-depth and comprehensive coverage that residents need in order to make informed decisions," he said. Here's the Times story announcing his appointment. The Times and Mercury News are part of the California Newspaper Partnership, whose majority partner is the Denver-based MediaNews Group headed by Dean Singleton. (Photo credit: Online News Association)

Merc veteran found dead, police investigate

Richard Ramirez, a top editor at the Mercury News, has been found dead in his home in Livermore, and police are investigating, the Merc reported. Ramirez, 44, came to the Mercury News in 1984 as an intern and went on to hold several positions, including reporter, assistant state editor and his most recent role as assistant to the executive editor. Executive Editor Carole Leigh Hutton said, "Rich's death is a tragedy that has stunned all of us ... He had a gentility about him that made him very easy to work with, but his professionalism and commitment to this newspaper and its community were always clear."

Ramirez had been active in the National Association of Hispanic Journalists and served as chairman of the local planning committee that helped host the group's annual convention in San Jose last week. He mentored young journalists.

"I just saw him on Sunday and I said, 'goodbye,' and thanked him for being such a great leader. I'm just speechless," said Veronica Villafañe, former president of the NAHJ and co-chair of this year's convention.

Ramirez is survived by his wife, Janet Dalke.

No details were given in the Merc story about the nature of his death or why police are investigating.

Here's a link to an online guest book the Merc has set up for friends to share their thoughts and condolences. (Photo credit: Peninsula Press Club -- Rich was photographed during this year's award's banquet.)

More reporters leaving the business

Another day, another list of reporters who are leaving newspapers. Two members of the Chron's Sacramento Bureau are departing, Mark Martin and Greg Lucas. Martin is going to the Little Hoover Commission while Lucas is leaving to "write more travel stories and feed my seemingly unquenchable wanderlust," according to a note quoted by Steven Maviglio's Majority Report political blog. "And I don’t think I’m too old to learn the new trick of blog although I’m troubled since it’s a four-letter word like work and golf ... " Lucas says in the note. He adds a P.S.: "I’ll see you around campus. I’ll be the guy with the earring and the 'Will Write 4 Food" sign.'"

Maviglio notes that the "departure of Lucas and Martin leaves just two reporters left in the Sacramento bureau of the financially troubled Chronicle, having shaved an editor two weeks ago and not replacing another reporter who left."

Romenesko reports that the Sacramento Bee's Tom Philp (left), who won a Pulitzer for editorial writing in 2005, is joining the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California as executive strategist.

Finally, Glen Martin's name has popped up on the Chron's blog for staffers who are leaving as the paper cuts a quarter of its 400-person newsroom. Assistant Metro Editor Audrey Cooper says Martin (right) had the newsroom's most developed vocabulary:
    "Glen says he has a talent for 'le mot juste.' Don't be afraid to look it up: It means he has a penchant for picking the right words to convey a point. Among our favorite Glen words (at least, the ones we can remember): gambol (that means frolic), noisome (noxious), reprobate (morally depraved), saturnine (sluggish)."

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Suit to open police records moves forward

A judge has allowed an usual lawsuit accusing several police departments in Santa Clara County of withholding public information to go forward. But the plaintiffs, a wealthy and politically active couple from Saratoga, never asked for any documents themselves. Instead, Janice and Ronald Naymark are suing because they don't want their tax dollars used by agenices that do not obey the law.

As reported by the Press Club on Feb. 22, the Naymarks sued after reading a story in the Mercury News about an audit of public record act compliance by CalAware, a nonprofit that fights for open records and public access to government meetings.

The judge on Friday allowed the case to move forward, but raised questions about whether the couple can sue the cities if they don't pay taxes in those cities. Defendants include police departments in San Jose, Campbell, Los Gatos-Monte Sereno, Palo Alto and Santa Clara, as well as the CHP and Santa Clara County Sheriff.

The couple's attorney, James McManis, told the Mercury News he may file a statement outlining the ways in the couple's taxes paid to the counties are distributed to the other cities. The problem could also be remedied by finding people in those cities willing to join the suit. "We have lots of people who would love to be plaintiffs in this case," McManis was quoted by the Merc's Leslie Griffy as saying.

Badkhen, Hoge latest to leave Chron

Two more familiar bylines will soon be disappearing from the Chronicle due to Hearst's plans to eliminate 100 of the paper's 400 newsroom positions. Foreign and national correspondent Anna Badkhen — who reported from the front lines of Iraq, Kashmir, Chechnya and New Orleans after Katrina — is headed to the Boston Globe. Also leaving is Patrick Hoge, who wrote about the homeless among other topics. He is a 19 year veternan of the Chron. A page provides bios of Badkhen, Hoge and others who are leaving the Chronicle.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Merc to cut 40 newsroom jobs; no buyouts

The Mercury News announced it will eliminate 40 of its 240 full-time newsroom jobs next month, a 17 percent reduction, executive editor Carole Leigh Hutton (pictured) announced today. No decisions on who will be laid off have been made, but the number of layoffs will likely be less than 40 because some employees were planning to leave before the cuts were announced.

No buyouts are being offered.

Under the paper's agreement with the San Jose Newspaper Guild, management has to consider four factors in determining who gets laid off, according to Hutton — qualifications, competency, the ability to do available work and seniority.

"It's a business decision. It's a difficult thing to do," Hutton told the AP. "We value the work of these people. We're not laying off poor performers. We're laying off journalists that are a key part of our organization."

The Merc cut 52 people from its newsroom through buyouts in November 2005 and laid off 15 in December 2006, according to the Guild.

The cuts were not unexpected, though the size was less than previously reported. John McManus of San Jose State j-school, posted an article May 31 that said the Merc planned to cut 60 jobs, about a quarter of its newsroom. On June 6, Hutton called a staff meeting to say that there would be cuts, but an exact number hadn't been determined.

Hutton, former editor and publisher of the Detroit Free Press, replaced Susan Goldberg, who resigned last month to take the top newsroom job at the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Her departure followed a meeting where management told her that deep cuts needed to be made in the newsroom of the paper Dean Singleton's MediaNews Group has owned since August.

The Chronicle is also in the midst of cutting 100 of its 400 newsroom positions. Two weeks after the planned layoffs were announced, the No. 2 person that newsroom, Managing Editor Robert Rosenthal, resigned.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Bronstein: Blogs steal like Johnny Depp

Does Phil Bronstein (pictured) care that Web sites are ripping off his paper? He tells SFist, a site that uses Chron material, it's "piracy. You should pay us." But he adds, "[I]t's more like a Johnny Depp kind of piracy -- having your pocket picked by a charming degenerate. Besides, we're not in a pay-for-use web world. If we were, newspapers would be making money."

In a Q&A with SFist Bronstein also says:
    "We’re having a tough time these days, as are many big dailies; a lot of good people’s lives are being affected. But the Chronicle will continue to be packed with talented journalists who will keep providing what Rita called 'an essential public service.'”
Bronstein admits that the future of media is "all speculation" and he's willing to listen to ideas:
    "As a journalist, if you don’t, you might be suffering from that 'higher calling disease,' a professional hazard that I’d illustrate with what might be an apocryphal story: the reporter who can't take a call or answer an email from a reader because they're too busy 'doing journalism.'"

New W. Marin paper to hold public meeting

Amid criticism over the changes a new owner of the Point Reyes Light has made, the paper in Bodega Bay is starting a paper in West Marin called the Pilot. Here is the Pilot's staff (we're suckers for pictures of newsies): From left: Joel Hack, with Jim's dog "Birdy", Jim Kravets, Jeremy Sharp, Sandy Duveen, Larken Bradley, Ellen Shehadeh. Not pictured are Kathryn LeMieux and Dewey Livingston.

The MediaNews Group-owned Marin Independent Journal ran a blurb this morning saying the Pilot's staff was going to hold a public meeting at 7 p.m. Monday at the Dance Palace Community Center in Point Reyes Station to hear from the community about what they'd like in their newspaper. (When was the last time you saw a daily newspaper running an item announcing an event held by a separately-owned weekly paper, or vice versa? Maybe MediaNews wants the Pilot to give the Light some competition?)

The Pilot printed an "introductory edition" on June 1 but plans its premier edition on July 5. Here's a list of names people have suggested for the new paper. They ought to put these up to a vote amongst people who visit their Web site.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Report: Examiner will launch in Los Angeles

Billionaire oilman Phil Anschutz, who bought the San Francisco Examiner in 2004, is planning to launch another Examiner in Los Angeles, Media Life Magazine reports on its online edition. Media Life attributed its information to a "newspaper industry source familiar with the growth plans of parent Clarity Media Group," owned by Anschutz.

Like his San Francisco paper, the Los Angeles paper would be free and tabloid-sized. Anschutz also has Examiners in Washington, D.C., and Baltimore, and a second San Francisco free daily called The City Star.

The Examiner, with its Republican viewpoint on the editorial page, would provide a contrast to the L.A. Times, which sides more often with Democrats.

The Press Club Web site reported on Feb. 15, 2006 that Anschutz's Clarity Media registered the URL, but Clarity said nothing was planned. Still, the name Los Angeles Examiner brings back memories of newspapers long gone. William Randolph Hearst founded the Los Angeles Examiner in 1922. In 1962, it merged with the Herald Express. The merged Los Angeles Herald Examiner survived until 1989.

San Mateo County Times moves to new digs

The San Mateo County Times has moved from its home for the last 43 years at 1080 S Amphlett Blvd. (pictured) to a newer, smaller but more modern space at 477 Ninth St. (at S. Claremont St.). Columnist John Horgan recalls that the old place used to bustle with activity:
    "Camaraderie among the staff members was a hallmark. An annual Christmas party hosted by the outfit's photographers was a much- anticipated event. ...

    "It all hit home when a managing editor, overcome by several flagons of firewater and clutching the pathetic remnants of a cheap, stale cigar, collapsed into a potted plant near the archives room. Reviving him and then getting him back to his long-suffering spouse turned out to be a daunting task. Shortly after that, the holiday soiree was canceled."
As the Press Club reported June 1, former editor John Bowman, who quit in anger over budget cuts by owner Media News, said the old building had deteriorated in the past few months — copper tubing was stolen by vandals, resulting in no hot water, and that the ventilation systems are also down. He said a pregnant reporter was working from home because of 90-degree temperatures in the newsroom. He said his office's temperature was 100 degrees. Reporters have also found rat droppings on their desks, Bowman said. He said the union has filed a grievance over working conditions and OSHA took a tour of the place.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

June 2007 Press Club board minutes

Meeting was brought to order at 6:25 p.m. by President Jamie Casini

Board members present: Peter Cleaveland, Jon Mays, Micki Carter, Jack Russell and Jamie Casini. Executive Director Darryl Compton was also in attendance.

Absent: Aimee Lewis Strain, Diana Diamond, Jennifer Aquino, Ed Remitz, Dave Price.

Minutes: Minutes of April and May meetings were approved.

Treasurer's Report: Compton said the report is in flux since the club still must pay people.

Old business

Awards ceremony: The club made $48.48 in profit from the awards night, Compton reported. Compton also suggested some changes since the workload of doing the award banquet is nonstop in conjunction with another awards banquet he organizes a week before the Press Club awards dinner night. Some suggestions included: Moving the night, moving to an electronic system of both submitting and distributing entries and eliminating the honorable mention award. Compton said he will come up with some suggestions.

New business

PPC membership directory: Compton said he will have it this summer.

Location of forum for high school students. It is tentatively scheduled for mid-September at the Daily News' new office in Menlo Park.

Annual picnic. Carter said she is planning for it Saturday, Sept. 8 at her house.


Changing the name of the club: Mays suggested holding a discussion about changing the club's name to better fit its work. San Francisco Peninsula Press Club or Bay Area Press Club were two suggestions Mays made. Casini will put the idea on the next agenda.

Meeting adjourned at 7:05 p.m.

Next meeting is July 11 at 6:15 p.m. at the San Mateo Daily News.

Minutes submitted by Secretary Jon Mays.

Man arrested for stealing free newspapers

A man who allegedly was stealing copies of the free Epoch Times at San Francisco's Transbay Terminal Station on Tuesday was arrested by police, the newspaper reports. The Epoch Times is a weekly that opposes China's communist government and is affiliated with the Falun Gong faith, which is banned in China. The paper has both English and Chinese language editions. It is distributed in several U.S. cities and has a newsroom in San Francisco.

The paper posted this photo of the arrest on its Web site. The suspect was not identified because the Times said police are investigating the thefts. Epoch Times' distributors said they saw the man empty more than 10 boxes before he was arrrested. The Times said it has filed police reports in the past about "severe newspaper box vandalism and theft which is taking place in Chinatown, areas close to Chinatown, or neighborhoods heavily populated with immigrants from mainland China."

Last year, California made it illegal to steal large quantities of free newspapers and a similar law has been on the books in San Francisco for several years.

The Epoch Times said it has been the victim of newspaper thieves before. It also distributes in Los Angeles, where in 2005 an "armed man of Asian descent followed a regular route through the city, pilfering papers from their boxes," the Times said. The man was reportedly arrested for assault. The newspaper also says San Francisco police were given a videotape of a woman stealing its papers in the city's Richmond District, but apparently no arrests have been made.

In 2005, the Epoch Times' San Francisco editor, Alex Ma, reported that his home was burglarized twice. He believes the burglaries were the work of Chinese government agents.

Chron creates 'colleagues remembered' page

The current round of layoffs at the Chon have taken their toll, and shocked staff members have begun posting remembrances to those who have left the paper, either on their own or with the help of management. Pictured are, from left, George Judson, Gail Bensinger, Jim Finefrock, Hulda Nelson, Trisha Lisk and David Tong. Others on the page include Mark Sandalow, Paul Feist and Stephen Cook.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Newspaper vendor dies after hit-and-run

The Chron reports that Richard Brielh, 77, an independent contractor who deliverered the Chron and other papers, died Friday from injuries he received in a hit-and-run near San Francisco's Nob Hill. Brielh, a Korean War veteran who sold newspapers for 35 years, was struck by a car at 5:30 a.m. on May 29 near his newsstand at California and Hyde streets. He was carried on the hood of the car for about 25 feet before the driver stopped. When Brielh fell off, the driver continued east on California toward Leavenworth Street. Police have made no arrests.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Will Chron become a local paper again?

As the Chronicle begins cutting 25% of its news staff, Aarti Shah of PR Week wonders in this commentary whether the cuts will force the newspaper to return to its roots as a city paper, instead of the regional one it has become. She writes:
    "Covering the entire Bay Area worked when the Chronicle directly rivaled the San Francisco Examiner, notes John Burks, retired chair of the journalism department at San Francisco State University. Since the papers merged in 1999, he says, the Chronicle has continued its regional strategy with a smaller staff and hasn't been able to compete with the local publications.

    "'Reaching out to the suburban readers who have more money made sense from an advertising perspective,' but when the Hearst Corp.-owned Chronicle did things like discontinue its zoned editions, the outreach stopped working, Burks notes.
Shaw notes that if the Chron cuts its news coverage, that will affect other area media — especially television, radio, and bloggers — that rely on the Chronicle to set the news agenda. "[I]f there is no clear news leader setting the standard, will we even know what we're missing?," Shaw asks.

Smaller papers doing better than big ones

While reporters, photographers and editors are losing their jobs at the Chronicle and possibly Mercury News, newsroom staffing levels at papers between 50,000 and 100,000 circulation are holding steady, says Poynter Institute media business analyst Rick Edmonds in this commentary. Edmonds (pictured) says the layoffs in the newspaper business are concentrated in about 90 papers ranging from 100,000 circulation up to the Los Angeles Times at 815,000-daily circulation.

But among large papers, there are a few that have avoided newsroom layoffs. He says they're succeeding because they zone heavily, giving their editions a local focus. Such papers include the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, the suburban Chicago Daily Herald and Poynter's St. Petersburg (Fla.) Times.

Saturday, June 9, 2007

Chron starts offering buyouts to reporters

The Chronicle has begun the process of offering buyouts to reporters and photographers as part of paper's plan to eliminate 100 jobs — 25 percent — of its newsroom. The first 20 cut were managers, and on Friday the managers who survived started going from desk to desk, tapping on the shoulders of the rank-and-file newsroom staffers being offered buyouts.

Here are two accounts — from the East Bay Express (headlined "Bloodbath at the Chron") and Richard Prince's online column Journal-isms at the Maynard Institute.

Prince quotes Chron's Guild boss Michael Cabanatuan as saying 12 or 13 employees were escorted to the human resources department and offered two weeks' pay for every year of service, in addition to a continuation of medical benefits for a maximum of one year. The employees were accompanied by the appropriate deputy managing editor. A Guild representative was present if requested.

Cabanatuan also told Prince the employees were told there would be layoffs if not enough people took the buyouts.

Science writer Keay Davidson and environmental reporter Glen Martin were among those who agreed to take buyouts, according to the EBX.

Paper's changes spark protest, competition

A new publisher's attempt to turn the Point Reyes Light community weekly into "The New Yorker of the West" has sparked a demonstration (see flyers above) and the launch of a competing newspaper, according to today's Chron by Peter Fimrite.

Joel Hack and Scot Caldwell of the Bodega Bay Navigator plan to start the new west Marin County paper next month. It will feature several former Light employees who left after former prosecutor Robert Plotkin bought the Light in 2005.

"What we are hearing from folks is that they are so glad we are going to be covering their community," said Hack, who promised lots of pictures and names of locals. "People want to know about themselves. That's the function of a community newspaper." Plotkin is suing Hack for hiring the Light's former owner, David Mitchell, to write for him in violation of the Light sales agreement.

Monday's protest is being organized by Elizabeth Whitney, who is seen at left heading out to post flyers for the demonstration. She told the Chron that to make room for a number of interns, Plotkin fired most of the Mitchell-era employees who had not already quit. He also hired a firm from Tampa, Fla., to redesign the paper, a change she described as horrifying. "Since Plotkin started a year and a half ago, it has just been one outrageous thing after the next," said Whitney, a 64-year-old former community newspaper publisher. "I want to wake people up and say, 'Yeah, well you can do something about it.' "

Plotkin told the Chron he isn't worried about the new competitor. "There will be a flash of interest in any new publication," he said. "People love the spectacle of a media war, but the long-term viability of a company trying to start up a newspaper in Marin is improbable. Dave (Mitchell) had three papers start up against him, and each time it was a burden, but one that eventually passed." (Photo credits: Flyers and Whitney by Kurt Rogers, Chronicle; Light cover by PPC)

Friday, June 8, 2007

Santa Cruz Sentinel to cut 8 newsroom jobs

The Santa Cruz Sentinel reported in today's edition that it will be cutting its newsroom staff by eight positions, or 21 percent. Editor Tom Honig told his staff in a meeting Thursday that eight of the paper's 38 full-time newsroom employees — reporters, photographers, editors, copy editors and support staff — will be let go on July 1. After the layoffs, the Sentinel will be devoting more of its resources to the Internet and conducting meetings with the public to find out what kind of coverage readers want in the paper, the story in today's edition said.

"We're going to continue to make the paper smarter and provide people with the information they need in a new era," Honig said. "Times change and old models have to change with it. I wish we could go off into the future with as many, if not more, reporters and photographers"

In April, 33 workers in the paper's pressroom and mailroom were laid off and the paper is now printed in San Jose by MediaNews Group's Mercury News. The paper's Church Street building is for sale. MediaNews Group owns a majority interest in California Newspapers Partnership, which purchased the 25,000-circulation Sentinel in February for $45 million.

Editors needed to mentor students

The National Association of Hispanic Journalists is seeking editors to work with students next week in San Jose on the Latino Reporter, the publication that will cover the organization's convention. Joe Vazquez of KPIX is coordinating this. If anyone is interested, they can contact Joe directly at Volunteers would receive a pass to attend the convention. For more details on the convention, visit:

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Garcia: Chron waited too long to make cuts

Former Chron now Examiner columnist Ken Garcia (pictured) says Hearst waited too long to make cuts at the Chron. Garcia writes in his column this morning:
    "The Chronicle has lost, by its own estimation, at least $60 million a year since Hearst took over the paper in 2000. Other organizations would have immediately pounced on the fact that the paper’s editorial staff far exceeded that of any newspaper in its circulation class, but not Hearst, which bravely and blindly announced that there would be no layoffs after the acquisition.

    "Yet even when new management decided to try to slash union costs and reduce staff, it simply could not. After 13 years toiling at the Voice of the West, I took a buyout from the Chronicle in 2005 along with about 100 other journalists when the paper made a brief acknowledgment that it was in the midst of an economic seizure. And how did it react? By promptly hiring about half that many journalists back, as if new blood would somehow reinvigorate it."

Gillmor optimistic about journalism's future

Former Merc columnist and citizen journalism promoter Dan Gillmor (pictured) says in a Chronicle op-ed today:
    "There's never been a better time, I tell students, to be a journalistic entrepreneur -- to invent your own job, to become part of the generation that figures out how to produce and, yes, sell the journalism we desperately need as a society and as citizens of a shrinking planet. The young journalists who are striking out on their own today, experimenting with techniques and business models, will invent what's coming. ...

    "[S]mart people -- including the ones working for traditional media companies, most of which are still quite profitable even as trends work against them -- will invent, discover and use democratized media tools to create updated and new kinds of journalistic products and services. The journalistic ecosystem could end up healthier in the end, if we get this right."

Curley comments on dismissal from Chron

John Curley, former Chron deputy managing editor who was let go as part of a reduction of the paper's staff, has posted a brief statement at Flickr that says in part:
    "Even though this is officially termed a 'reduction in force,' I am surprised and dismayed that the organization thinks it can have a future without me. To be honest, I thought I'd get the chance to help lead the paper where it needed to go to compete successfully in the digital age. But instead, off I go. ...

    "It's a bad time for me, and a bad time for the paper, but most importantly, I think it's a bad time for the democracy."

Merc editor disputes layoff number

Carole Leigh Hutton (pictured), the new executive editor of the Mercury News, called a staff meeting on Wednesday to confirm that there would be cuts in the newsroom, but she didn't know how many, according to a report on the Ghost Word blog of Berkeley author Frances Dinkelspiel. San Jose State professor John McManus posted an article May 31 that said the Merc planned to cut 60 of its 250 newsroom positions — 24 percent. McManus attributed the figure to John Bowman, who resigned two weeks ago as San Mateo County Times executive editor, who said he was present at a meeting at the Mercury News when the cuts were discussed. But on Wednesday, Hutton said she didn't know where those numbers had come from, and she was at the same meeting as Bowman. Hutton said the final figures are still being worked out as managers prepare budgets for the new fiscal year. Every group of employees, from Guild members to managers, are at risk, Dinkelspiel reported.

UC Berkeley names interim J-school dean

The East Bay Express reports that associate professor Neil Henry will serve as interim dean of the UC Berkeley graduate school of journalism for six months until Dianne Lynch of Ithaca College in New York takes over. There is a bit of irony in the move since Henry, an author and former Washington Post reporter, was a top contender for the deanship. (Previous coverage: Press Club, May 27, UC Berkeley names journalism dean)

UC Berkeley names interim J-school dean

The East Bay Express reports that associate professor Neil Henry will serve as interim dean of the UC Berkeley graduate school of journalism for six months until Dianne Lynch of Ithaca College in New York takes over. There is a bit of irony in the move since Henry, an author and former Washington Post reporter, was a top contender for the deanship. (Previous coverage: Press Club, May 27, UC Berkeley names journalism dean)

Ex-editor John Bowman rips MediaNews

San Jose State professor John McManus has posted an interview with former San Mateo County Times executive editor John Bowman (pictured), who quit two weeks ago over budget cuts that have reduced local news coverage by that MediaNews paper.

"They're way past the point of diminishing returns, of penny-wise and pound-foolish," Bowman says of MediaNews, the chain headed by Dean Singleton.

Points Bowman makes include:
    • In 2004, the Times had four editors and 12 full-time reporters. Now it has three editors and eight reporters. San Mateo County has 21 cities and 700,000 residents.

    • On weekends and holidays, the Oakland Tribune, Hayward Daily Review, Tri-Valley Herald, Fremont Argus and San Mateo County Times each have one reporter working, Bowman said. A single editor is on duty for all five MediaNews papers.

    • MediaNews has shifted the copy-editing of many of its newspapers to a centralized newsroom in Plesanton to save money. Bowman says that the copy editors there are "are just as dedicated and serious about doing journalism as I am" but because they're short-handed, they're making embarrassing errors. He cites two instances where they put the wrong city's name in the headline for a local story. "One day there was a blank space on the front page where a photo was supposed to go. What concerned me was that there was no noticeable alarm that this had occurred. [Because the copy desk is in Pleasanton] there's no connection to the community, so why be embarrassed by anything?" McManus quotes Kevin Keane, the editor in charge of most of MediaNews' Bay Area newspapers, as saying, "There's no question that the one copy desk has had some problems, but it's a solid operation."

    • Keane said MediaNews is moving toward a centralized copy desk next year that will serve all of its papers in the region, including the Mercury News.

    • Editorials at the San Mateo County Times and apparently other MediaNews papers are being written by news editors, not editorial writers. McManus says that creates a conflict between those who gather the news and those who comment on it. Keane says that while it would be ideal to have such a separation, it is common practice at smaller papers to combine the two jobs.
The inteview concludes with this quote from Bowman: "The newspaper business I got involved in, some say it's dying. I say it's dead. The last 10 years of my career has been hospice care." [Previous coverage: Press Club, June 1 — Bowman resigns] (Photo credit: Grade the News)

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

More departing Chron staffers identified

The names of six more of the 100 people who will be leaving the Chronicle newsroom have emerged. They are Marc Sandalow, Wendy Miller, Trisha Lisk, Gail Bensinger, Paul Feist and Gary Fong, according to a memo from Editor Phil Bronstein posted at Romenesko. Perhaps the best known name on the list is that of Sandalow, the paper's Washington Bureau Chief who also is a contributor to KCBS-AM. The names are in addition to those named yesterday (see item below). The Chron's Marcus Chan has put up a blog that is designed to help those who lost their jobs in the downsizing.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Nine more top editors leave the Chronicle

Following last week's departure of managing editor Robert Rosenthal, the names of nine more editors leaving the Chronicle surfaced today. Berkeley author Frances Dinkelspiel, writing in her Ghost Word blog, says those getting the ax include deputy managing editors John Curley and Leslie Guevarra, assistant managing editor Steve Cook, Insight section editor Jim Finefrock, Style section editor Paul Wilner, assistant managing editor of enterprise George Judson, assistant metro editor Laura Impellizzeri, assistant business editor David Tong and art director Hulda Nelson.

Dinkelspiel writes:
    "You know times are bad when Executive Editor Phil Bronstein (pictured) gives the boot to men and women who have been his colleagues for years — some all the way back to his tenure at the Examiner. These cuts are so draconian and eliminate so many veteran journalists that one can't help believe that the Chronicle will have a tough time putting out a quality product."
Romenesko has posted a memo from Bronstein on the departures of Curley and Guevarra. Curley has been at the Chron since 1982 and Guevarra started at the Ex the same year.

Papers bicker over errors, 'silent partners'

East Bay Express editor Stephen Buel, who purchased his newspaper from the Village Voice Media chain with the help of investors, is complaining about mistakes the Berkeley Daily Planet made in covering the sale. Planet Editor Becky O'Malley has acknowledged the errors but still wants to know the identities of the investors. A few names have come out, such as Express co-founder Kelly Vance and Monterey County Weekly founder Bradley Zeve, but Buel says he doesn't plan to identify certain "silent partners."

Buel complained about the Planet's coverage in a letter to the Association of Alternative Newsweeklies, which had posted information from a Planet story on its Web site. Buel's letter says:
    "The Daily Planet has now run three separate explanations of the new ownership of the Express and every one of them have been wrong. The actual situation is that Hal Brody and I each assembled small groups of investors who collectively each own 50 percent of the newspaper. Hal's team consists of himself and two friends; my team consists of myself and four friends. There are eight investors in total (although currently the Daily Planet website counts 100). ..."
The Planet ran this correction and Editor O'Malley sent this response to the Association of Alternative Newsweeklies:
    “Well, the new ownership of the East Bay Express gets more confusing all the time, and we at the Berkeley Planet admit that we might have had some role in spreading the confusion. Based on one of those 'don’t attribute it to me' sources which we all ought to avoid, the Planet first reported that Hal Brody would own '51 percent' of the new enterprise. Responding to a call from editor Stephen Buel, the story on the website was changed the day after publication to reflect what the reporter thought he had heard Buel say, admittedly with a bad cell phone connection involved — that’s where the mythical 100 investors made their brief appearance on the stage. Next day Buel called again to set the record straight one more time."
Now that she's corrected the errors, O'Malley still wants to know who owns the Express. She writes:
    "Is Hal Brody the investor-in-charge, or isn’t he? Does he have a controlling interest in the venture, whatever his percentage?

    "On May 16 the Express’s East Bay Blog said that 'Brody will take over as publisher of the Express,' but later reports elsewhere say the former head of ad sales for the Bay Guardian will be the new publisher. And is Brody still living in Kansas City? Is he still a commercial real estate broker there, as one web site indicates?

    "Is it correct to say that the revised Express will be locally owned, or are Buel and Vance the only investors who can really claim to be local?"
An Express reader raised similar questions on an EBX blog and Buel offered this response:
    "... We have already identified half this group, including both of the controlling investors; the remainder are silent partners who live elsewhere and have no other business interests or related conflicts in the East Bay."

'Backroads' duo launches Web site

Doug McConnell (pictured), host of KRON 4's "Bay Area Backroads," and former KRON executive producer Carl Bidleman have launched a travel site called OpenRoad.TV. The site lets "visitors from around the world can plan journeys and adventures in the American West with the help of stunning video, expert knowledge, travel tips and firsthand accounts from the online community of travelers." OpenRoad.TV is owned by ConvergenceMedia Productions. Doug McConnell and Carl Bidleman are the principals of the company, based in Sausalito. Jim Wirth heads up marketing and community development. Paul Schoos is head of finance.

Monday, June 4, 2007

30th Annual Greater Bay Area Journalism Awards

Bay Area print journalists, photographers, radio and television personnel and public relations professionals were presented with 232 awards of excellence in 97 categories at the Peninsula Press Club's 30th annual Greater Bay Area Journalism Awards dinner here tonight.

The Peninsula Press Club's annual Professional Journalism Awards Competition dinner was held at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Foster City.

The winners were selected from 522 entries from media professionals in the 11 Greater Bay Area counties. Competition was for work done in 2006. Entries were judged by the Florida Press Club, Milwaukee Press Club, the Press Club of Cleveland, San Diego Press Club and the Press Club of Southeast Texas. The photography staff of Orange County Register judged the photo entries coordinated by Paul Sakuma of the Associated Press.

Two $1,500 scholarships in the name of the late San Francisco Chronicle columnist Herb Caen were awarded to Hannah Hoffman, Burlingame High School, and Shaminder Dulai, San Jose State University.

The complete list of winners follows:

NEWSPAPERS - Dailies over 75,000 circulation (Division A)

First -- San Jose Mercury News, "Arduous Road to Healthy Future," Ed Clendaniel
Second -- The Press Democrat, "Karr Files: Sometimes government needs to be reminded it's the people's business," Peter Golis
Honorable Mention -- San Jose Mercury News, "What He Should Say," Barbara Marshman

First -- San Jose Mercury News, "Columns of Scott Herhold," Scott Herhold
Second -- The Press Democrat, "Columns of Ann Dubay," Ann Dubay
Honorable Mention -- San Jose Mercury News, "Columns of Patty Fisher," Patty Fisher

First -- San Jose Mercury News, "Male Call," Jeff Thomas
Second -- The Press Democrat, "The Columns of Chris Coursey," Chris Coursey
Honorable Mention -- San Jose Mercury News, "The Columns of Mike Cassidy," Mike Cassidy

First -- The Press Democrat, "The Columns of Lowell Cohen," Lowell Cohen
Second -- San Jose Mercury News, "The Columns of Mike Purdy," Mark Purdy

Breaking News
First -- San Jose Mercury News, "Indicted Mayor: I Won't Resign," San Jose Mercury News
Second -- San Jose Mercury News, "Inside the HP Privacy Drama," San Jose Mercury News

News Story
First -- The Press Democrat, "Illegal Immigrants," Martin Espinosa
Second -- San Jose Mercury News, "Public Safety Disabled," John Woolfolk

Continuing Coverage
First -- San Jose Mercury News, "Tainted Trials, Stolen Justice," Fredric N. Tulsky
Second -- The Press Democrat, "Bishop Walsh: Failure to Report," Martin Espinoza, Guy Kovner

First -- San Jose Mercury News, "Frank's Fight," Mark Emmons
Second -- San Jose Mercury News, "Fury on the Range," Julia Prodis Sulek
Honorable Mention -- The Press Democrat, "Roseland Journal," Martin Espinoza, Jeremy Hay, Rayne Wolfe

Feature Story of Light Nature
First -- San Jose Mercury News, "Call me...or text me...or e-mail me...," Mark De La Vina
Second -- San Jose Mercury News, "Game Control Gives Disabled Chance to Play," Mike Antonucci

Feature Story of Serious Nature
First -- San Jose Mercury News, "Laurie Survived," Howard Mintz
Second -- The Press Democrat, "Giving Thanks," Susan Swartz
Honorable Mention -- San Jose Mercury News, "Road Life Wearies Harmonica Virtuoso," Brad Kava

First -- San Jose Mercury News, "Bribery Charge Raises Legal Eyebrows," Barry Witt

Technology Story
First -- San Jose Mercury News, "What Do They Know About You?," Elise Ackerman

Business Story
First -- San Jose Mercury News, "What's Wrong in the Fight Against Anthrax?," Steve Johnson
Second -- The Press Democrat, "Jess Jackson: Taken for a ride," Kevin McCallum

Entertainment Review
First -- San Jose Mercury News, "She's bad...really, really bad," Bruce Newman
Second -- San Jose Mercury News, "Hot Words, Cold House," Karen D'Souza

Specialty Story
First -- San Jose Mercury News, "The Horns of Pamplona," Michael Martinez
Second -- San Jose Mercury News, "Soda With a Story," Carolyn Jung
Honorable Mention -- San Jose Mercury News, "Bodies by Bollywood," Nerissa Pacio

Sports Story
First -- San Jose Mercury News, "A Big Loss," Mark Emmons
Second -- San Jose Mercury News, "Is the System Fair?," Jon Wilner
Honorable Mention -- The Press Democrat, "Saints Unlikely Saviors of the City," Bob Padecky
Honorable Mention -- San Jose Mercury News, "In the Home Stretch," Mark Emmons

Sports Game Story
First -- San Jose Mercury News, "Snow Throne," Elliott Almond
Second -- San Jose Mercury News, "Thumbs Up," Daniel Brown

Page Design
First -- San Jose Mercury News, "The Ax Falls in the Valley," Shraddha Swaroop,
Michael Tribble
Second -- San Jose Mercury News, "Hate Crowds?," Stephanie Grace Lim
Honorable Mention -- San Jose Mercury News, "Monster Mash-up," Martin Gee
Honorable Mention -- The Press Democrat, "1906 Earthquake," Dennis Bolt

NEWSPAPERS - Dailies UNDER 75,000 circulation (Division B)

First -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "The Trouble With Trees," Jon Mays
Second -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Gambling Bill Should be Left to Die," Jon Mays
Honorable Mention -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Did the Boycott Make its Point?," Jon Mays

First -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Columns by Bill Silverfarb," Bill Silverfarb
Second -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Off the Beat by Michelle Durand," Michelle Durand
Honorable Mention -- Santa Cruz Sentinel, "Reporter at Large," Jondi Gumz

First -- Palo Alto Daily News, "Columns by LJ Anderson," L.J. Anderson
Second -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Columns by Bill Silverfarb," Bill Silverfarb
Honorable Mention -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Off the Beat by Michelle Durand," Michelle Durand

First -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "The Sports Lounge," Nathan Mollat
Second -- Palo Alto Daily News, "Columns by John Reid," John Reid
Honorable Mention -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Columns by Emanuel Lee," Emanuel Lee

Breaking News
First -- Daily News Group, "Toppled Tree Crushes Rruck," Banks Albach
Second -- San Mateo County Times, "Air Travelers Deal With Increased Security," Michael Manekin

News Story
First -- San Mateo County Times, "Thinkstream, San Carlos Deal Dubious," Rebekah Gordon
Second -- San Francisco Examiner, Peninsula Edition, "Parent Says School Broke Special Ed Law," Edward Carpenter
Honorable Mention -- San Mateo County Times, "Waterproof?," Julia Scott

Continuing Coverage
First -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Peninsula Interchange Eminent Domain Threat," Dana Yates, Heather Murtagh
Second -- The Argus, "Mechanics Cry Foul Over Relocation Fee," Matthew Artz
Honorable Mention -- San Mateo County Times, "Devil's Slide," Julia Scott
Honorable Mention -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "The Battle to Save Coyote Point Museum," Dana Yates
Honorable Mention -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "The Trial of Mayor Mike King," Michelle Durand

First -- San Mateo County Times, "A Shakeup of Epic Proportions," Suzanne Bohan, Julia Scott, Saqib Rahim, Ian Hoffman
Second -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Who are the Immigrants?," Heather Murtagh, Dana Yates
Honorable Mention -- San Mateo County Times, "One Year After Katrina," Rebekah Gordon

Feature Story of Light Nature
First -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Gettin' into the Groove," Heather Murtagh
Second -- San Mateo County Times, "Tried and True," Julia Scott
Honorable Mention -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Stiletto Workouts," Dana Yates

Feature Story of Serious Nature
First -- Oakland Tribune, "Murder and Redemption," Kristin Bender
Second -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Charting a new path," Heather Murtagh
Honorable Mention -- San Mateo County Times, "Driven to the Abyss," Suzanne Bohan
Honorable Mention -- San Mateo County Times, "Undercover Stings Target San Mateo Day Laborers," Aaron Kinney, Michael Manekin
Honorable Mention -- The Daily Review, "No Regrets," Matt O'Brien

First -- The Daily Review, "Latino Political Representation in Hayward," Matt O'Brien, Martin Ricard
Second -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Track Battle Doesn't Have Height Fight's Verve," Jon Mays
Honorable Mention -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Five Years Later -- Was Ken White Worth It?" Jon Mays

Technology Story
First -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Your Wireless Future Awaits," Heather Murtagh

Business Story
First -- San Mateo County Times, "Auto Magic," Tim Simmers
Second -- San Mateo County Times, "Local Labels Sing the Blues," Tim Simmers
Honorable Mention -- Santa Cruz Sentinel, "Sole Scuffle," Jondi Gumz
Honorable Mention -- San Mateo County Times, "Slow to Recover From 9/11," Tim Simmers

Entertainment Review
First -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Trend Spotting," Cheri Lucas
Second -- Palo Alto Daily News, "'Waltz' Dances Around Bizarre Circumstance," John Angell Grant

Specialty Story
First -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Canadians Party Like It's a Summer Job," Cheri Lucas
Second -- San Mateo County Times, "Vintage Character," Tim Simmers
Honorable Mention -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Breweries Boast Beer Bounty," Heather Murtagh

Sports Story
First -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Healing One Day at a Time," Emanuel Lee
Second -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Life Off the Court Not Always Easy," Emanuel Lee
Honorable Mention -- San Mateo Daily News, "The Pride of the Padres?," Vytas Mazeika

Sports Game Story
First -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Serra: Finally!" Emanuel Lee
Second -- Palo Alto Daily News, "Paly Prevails in Instant Classic," John Reid
Honorable Mention -- Palo Alto Daily News, "'The Shield' Goes to Dons," Vytas Mazeika

Ad Design
First -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Downtown San Mateo," Nicola Zeuzem
Second -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "The 'Wow' Experience," Nicola Zeuzem

First -- Palo Alto Daily News, "Dip in CHiPs," Jamie Casini, Eric White
Second -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "Coroner Plots Fee Increase," Michelle Durand
Honorable Mention -- San Francisco Daily, "City Dunks Cookie-Scented Bus Stops," Jamie Morrow
Honorable Mention -- San Mateo Daily Journal, "No, Speed Racer, No," Heather Murtagh

NEWSPAPERS - Non-dailies (Division C)

First -- San Francisco Business Times, "Expulsion Only Remedy for Failed S.F. School Board," Jim Gardner
Second -- Los Gatos Weekly-Times, "Mayor is Conspicuously Absent," Dick Sparrer
Honorable Mention -- San Francisco Business Times, "Poor Judgment, or Bad Advice, Keeps Governor From BIO," Jim Gardner

First -- SF Weekly, "Columns of Matt Smith," Matt Smith
Second -- Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, "Columns by Diana Diamond," Diana Diamond
Honorable Mention -- Palo Alto Weekly, "Columns of Don Kazak," Don Kazak

First -- Los Gatos Weekly-Times, "Columns of Dick Sparrer," Dick Sparrer
Second -- Campbell Reporter, "Saving Our Children From Nature-Deficit Disorder," Moryt Milo

First -- Almaden Resident, "Sports Columns by Dick Sparrer," Dick Sparrer

Breaking News
First -- Campbell Reporter, "Rough Day for Students Learning Safety," Alicia Upano
Second -- Palo Alto Weekly, "Garth Li Remembered/Tongan Royalty Death," Palto Alto Weekly Staff

News Story
First -- San Francisco Bay Guardian, "iJacked," Charles Russo
Second -- Bay Area Reporter, "25 Years into AIDS Epidemic, SF Examines its System of Care," Matthew S. Bajko
Honorable Mention -- San Francisco Business Times, "FBI Seeks to Enroll Local Universities," Daniel S. Levine

Continuing Coverage
First -- Palo Alto Weekly, "School District Mismanagement," Alexandra Rocha, Becky Trout, Jay Thorwaldson, Don Kazak
Second -- The Alameda Journal, "Alameda Power & Telecom et al," Jeff Mitchell
Honorable Mention -- Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, "Chamber Mailer Creating Backlash," Timothy Roberts

Feature Story of Light Nature
First -- SF Weekly, "Inside the Savage Nation," Ron Russell
Second -- Pacific Sun, "Marin Uncorked," Jill Kramer
Honorable Mention -- Los Gatos Weekly-Times, "Changing Times," Jason Sweeney

Feature Story of Serious Nature
First -- SF Weekly, "Cops Who Spy," A.C. Thompson
Second -- Pacific Sun, "Undocumented Workers," Jill Kramer
Honorable Mention -- Palo Alto Weekly, "The New Face of Philanthropy," Molly Tanenbaum

First -- Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, "San Jose on a Losing Streak -- Bad Calls Bog Down City Plans," Sharon Simonson

Technology Story
First -- San Francisco Business Times, "," Adrienne Sanders
Second -- San Francisco Business Times, "Biofuel Catches Fire," Lizette Wilson

Business Story
First -- San Francisco Business Times, "Just Doing Their Jobs," Adrienne Sanders, Daniel S. Levine, Eric Young
Second -- Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, "Close Ties, Dad Timing," Timothy Roberts
Honorable Mention -- San Francisco Business Times, "Executives of the Year," Lizette Wilson

Entertainment Review
First -- Berkeley Daily Planet, "Cowboy del Amor," Justin DeFreitas
Second -- Berkeley Daily Planet, "The Devil and Daniel Johnston," Justin DeFreitas

Specialty Story
First -- Palo Alto Weekly, "Senior Substance Abuse Rises," Sue Dremann
Second -- Pacific Sun, "The Latest Buzz," Jill Kramer
Honorable Mention -- Berkeley Daily Planet, "San Francisco Silent Film Festival," Justin DeFreitas

Sports Story
First -- SF Weekly, "Most Valuable Teammate," Martin Kuz
Second -- Los Gatos Weekly-Times, "Minor League," Dick Sparrer
Honorable Mention -- Saratoga News, "No. 1 Niner," Shannon Burkey

Sports Game Story
First -- Los Gatos Weekly-Times, "Blair is Perfect," Dick Sparrer

Page Design
First -- San Francisco Business Times, "Just Doing Their Jobs," Carol Collier
Second -- San Francisco Business Times, "Overpaid/Underpaid," Mitch Green

First -- Los Gatos Weekly-Times, "Do You See What I Sawed?," Dick Sparrer
Second -- Willow Glen Resident, "How Many People Does It Take to Change Street's Light Bulbs?" Moryt Milo


First -- San Francisco Bay Guardian, "The Condo War Continues," Tim Redmond
Second -- Valley Life Quarterly, "Grow Slow is Way to Go," Diana Diamond

First -- San Jose Magazine, "Up Front," Larry Gerston
Second -- San Francisco Bay Guardian, "Editor's Notes," Tim Redmond

First -- San Jose Magazine, "Off the Wall," Murry Frymer
Second -- The Wave Magazine, "The Final Last Word," Sean Reiley

News Story
First -- San Francisco Bay Guardian, "From Here to Katrina," Steven T. Jones

Feature Story of Light Nature
First -- San Francisco Bay Guardian, "As the World Turns," Merritt Grooms
Second -- The Wave Magazine, "Top 5 Chefs Under 35," John Newlin, Wave Staff
Honorable Mention -- Valley Life Quarterly, "The Psychology of Shopping," Diana Diamond

Feature Story of Serious Nature
First -- San Jose Magazine, "Funny Gal," Jodi Engle
Second -- San Francisco Bay Guardian, "It Flows Downhill," Sarah Jane Phelan

First -- San Jose Magazine, "Political Primer With the Path to Politics," Larry Gerston, Leigh Weimers, Mandy Major

Business Story
First -- San Jose Magazine, "Winning Workplaces," Jennifer Roberts

Entertainment Review
First -- San Francisco Bay Guardian, "Offense Defense," Cheryl Eddy

Specialty Story
First -- San Jose Magazine, "Grape Adventures," Jennifer Roberts
Second -- San Jose Magazine, "Diverse Delicacies," Jennifer Roberts
Honorable Mention -- San Jose Magazine, "Super Size Me," Mandy Major

Sports Story
First -- San Jose Magazine, "Diamond in the Rough," Mandy Major
Second -- The Wave Magazine, "Diva on the Field," Steve Goldstein, John Newlin

Page Design
First -- San Jose Magazine, "Film Fever," Jerome Callens
Second -- San Jose Magazine, "Sweet on Shoes," Jerome Callens
Honorable Mention -- The Wave Magazine, "10 Things Every Dream Home Needs," Chris S. Schmauch


Editorial Cartoons
First -- Berkeley Daily Planet, "Mousetrap," Justin DeFreitas
Second -- Berkeley Daily Planet, "September 10th," Justin DeFreitas
Honorable Mention -- Berkeley Daily Planet, "Media Balance," Justin DeFreitas


Spot News Photography
First -- The Press Democrat, "Mudslide," John Burgess
Second -- San Mateo County Times, "Terrorist Threat," John J. Green
Honorable Mention -- Associated Press, "Fire on the Range," Paul Sakuma
Honorable Mention -- Santa Cruz Sentinel, "Arrest at Gunpoint," Shmuel Thaler

General News Photography
First -- San Jose Mercury News, "Immigrant Rights," Nhat V. Meyer
Second -- San Francisco Chronicle, "Quake," Kate Wade
Honorable Mention -- Associated Press, "Eying Immigration," Paul Sakuma
Honorable Mention -- The Press Democrat, "Wild and Worldy Waves," Scott Manchester

Feature Photography
First -- Santa Cruz Sentinel, "Game Face (Perfect Pirouettes)," Shmuel Thaler
Second -- San Mateo County Times, "Best Burgers in Town," John J. Green
Honorable Mention -- Associated Press, "YouTube Billionaires," Tony Avelar
Honorable Mention -- San Mateo County Times, "Mutton Buster," John J. Green

Sports Action Photography
First -- Associated Press, "Saved," Tony Avelar
Second -- San Jose Mercury News, "Buzzer Beater," Patrick Tehan
Honorable Mention -- Associated Press, "Headless Player," Paul Sakuma
Honorable Mention -- San Mateo County Times, "Helping Hand," John J. Green

Sports Feature Photography
First -- San Francisco Chronicle, "60 Feet Under," Kate Wade
Second -- San Jose Mercury News, "Learning From Losing," Patrick Tehan
Honorable Mention -- Rise Magazine, "Big Man," Tony Avelar
Honorable Mention -- San Mateo County Times, "Cooling Off," John J. Green

Photo Series or Picture Story
First -- San Jose Mercury News, "Frank's Fight," Pauline Lubens
Second -- San Jose Mercury News, "Abdul Hakim's Journey," Pauline Lubens

RADIO (Division G)

Breaking News
First -- KCBS Radio, "Hit and Run," KCBS News Team
Second -- KQED Public Radio, "Lethal Injecton," Peter John Shuler, Sarah Varney,
Craig Miller, Judy Campbell & Tamara Keith

Feature Story of Light Nature
First -- KCBS Radio, "Market Street," Mike Sugerman
Second -- KQED Public Radio, "Museum Quakes," Cyrus Musiker

Feature Story of Serious Nature
First -- KCBS Radio, "Back to the Bayou," Doug Sovern
Second -- KQED Public Radio, "Falun Gong," Stephanie Martin
Honorable Mention -- KQED Public Radio, "Hepatitis B," Sarah Varney

Public Affairs Program
First -- KQED Public Radio, "Health Dialogues -- Genes, Disease & Difference," Scott Shafer, Sarah Varney, David Minkow

Special Program
First -- KCBS Radio, "Starving for Perfection," Holly Quan

First -- KCBS Radio, "Dying to Work," Doug Sovern

Sports Story
First -- KQED Public Radio, "Ball Hawk," Rob Schmitz
Second -- KCBS Radio, "Bonds," Doug Sovern

Use of Sound
First -- KCBS Radio, "Market Street," Mike Sugerman


Breaking News
First -- KPIX CBS 5, "Oakland Driveby," Manuel Ramos, Robert Moonan

Feature Story of Light Nature
First -- KNTV NBC 11, "Winery Photographer," Mary Orlin, Mark Oltz
Second -- KNTV NBC 11, "Pisoni Land," Mary Orlin, Jonathan Drum

Feature Story of Serious Nature
First -- KPIX CBS 5, "Liar Loans," Jeanette Pavini, Craig Franklin, Jeff Harris
Second -- KPIX CBS 5, "Christian Exodus," John Lobertini

Public Affairs Program
First -- KPIX CBS 5, "The Real Deal: Rip Offs & Scams," Jeanette Pavini
Second -- KPIX CBS 5, "The Real Deal: Giving Back," Jeanette Pavini, Teresa Jung, Shane Calvert, Tim Hazen

Special Program
First -- KPIX CBS 5, "The Wireless Runaround," Jeanette Pavini, Craig Franklin, Jeff Harris, Ed Nieto

First -- KICU 36, "Mack Family -- How Men are Made," Alforde M. Joaquin
Second -- KTEH 54, "Dave Tatsuno -- Movies and Memories," Christina Lim, Scott Gracheff, Steve Kern, Matt Sbona

Sports Story
First -- KICU 36, "Mack Family -- Coach Bordelon," Anna Kagarakis, Alforde M. Joaquin
Second -- KICU 36, "Superstitions," Anna Kagarakis, Alforde M. Joaquin

First -- KNTV NBC 11, "Oltz Composite," Mark Oltz
Second -- KPIX CBS 5, "Mistrot Composite," Jennifer Mistrot

First -- KFTY 50, "Bollini Composite," Chris Bollini
Second -- KNTV NBC 11, "Drum Composite," Jonathan Drum

WEB SITE (Division I)

Overall Web Site
First -- San Jose Mercury News, "," San Jose Mercury

News Photo Department
Second -- KCBS Radio, "," KCBS News & Web Team
Honorable Mention -- San Jose Mercury News, "," San Jose Mercury News Team

General News
First -- Great Schools, "Can MySpace Be Good for Kids?," Marian Wilde
Second -- Great Schools, "Best Public School Values in the San Francisco Bay Area," Lisa Rosenthal, Sheri Harrison
Honorable Mention -- Great Schools, "Go Global Summer International Programs for Teens," Linda Strean

Multi Media
First -- San Jose Mercury News, "The Hmong," Dai Sugano, Richard Koci Hernandez, Geri Migielicz
Second -- KNTV NBC 11, "Echoes From The Past -- The 1906 Earthquake," Jan Boyd, Jim Monroem, Bobee Padilla, Mark Willson
Honorable Mention -- San Jose Mercury News, "Journey with Abdul Hakim," Pauline Lubens, Richard Koci Hernandez, Geri Migielicz

First -- San Jose Mercury News, "AEI Blog," Mercury News Features Department


$1,500 Herb Caen Scholarshps
Hannah Hoffman, Burlingame High School
Shaminder Dulai, San Jose State University

Greater Bay Area Journalism Awards

Bay Area print journalists, photographers, radio and television personnel and public relations professionals were presented with 232 awards of excellence in 97 categories at the Peninsula Press Club's 30th annual Greater Bay Area Journalism Awards dinner in Foster City Saturday night (June 2, 2007).

Here is a complete list of the winners.

The winners were selected from 522 entries from media professionals in the 11 Greater Bay Area counties. Competition was for work done in 2006. Entries were judged by the Florida Press Club, Milwaukee Press Club, the Press Club of Cleveland, San Diego Press Club and the Press Club of Southeast Texas. The photography staff of the Orange County Register judged the photo entries coordinated by Paul Sakuma of The Associated Press.

The San Jose Mercury News took home the most awards (hope the new editor is reading this!). Posing with the awards were, from left, Nerissa Pacio, Brad Kava, Mike Antonucci and Rich Ramirez.

The San Mateo Daily Journal staff was a big winner in this year's contest for papers under 75,000 circulation.

Tim Simmers of the San Mateo County Times scored a grand slam home run by winning a first, second and honorable mention in the business story category.

Among radio stations, KCBS All News 740 was the champion, taking home this stack awards. Holly Quan, right, won in the Special Program category.

Patty and Paul Sakuma were on hand Saturday night. Paul, who is with the AP, received three awards.

Brad Kava of the Mercury News was honored in the Serious Feature Story category with a piece headlined "Road Life Wearies Harmonica Virtuoso."

Jamie Casini and Eric White of the Palo Alto Daily News shared the award for best headline for this gem "Dip in CHiPs."

Jay Thorwaldson, editor of the Palo Alto Weekly, picks up one of the many awards his paper won.

Dick Sparrer of the Silicon Valley Newspaper Group wears many hats. He earned six awards — for editorial, column, sports column, sports story, game story and headline. Is there anything in the newsroom this guy doesn't do?

Al Bullock, former KGO-TV ABC7 news photographer, can't put the camera down.

Kristin Bender of the Oakland Tribune, right, won the first place award for serious news feature for her story titled "Murder and Redemption."

Justin DeFreitas of the Berkeley Daily Planet had the audience laughing out loud when they saw his editorial cartoons. The Planet won six awards this year.

Julia Scott of the San Mateo County Times seems to be in disbelief after winning four awards.

Jay Thorwaldson, editor of the Palo Alto Weekly, and Dave Price, formerly of the Palo Alto Daily News, used to be rivals but still are friends.

Two $1,500 scholarships in the name of the late San Francisco Chronicle columnist Herb Caen were awarded this year. One went to Hannah Hoffman, center, of Burlingame High School. The other went to Shaminder Dulai of San Jose State University (not pictured).

Photos above by Paul Sakuma, Micki Carter and Dave Price.