Monday was a singular day in my life, as my plans were announced to leave The Buffalo News to become Public Editor of the New York Times.
I've been here for quite a while. Coming out of school in 1980, I was lucky enough to have internship offers at both Buffalo newspapers -- the Courier-Express and the Buffalo Evening News. I had the sense to ask my father, a lawyer, what to do, and I remember his understated analysis: "The News seems to be the dominant paper." So I took that internship and began writing for Gusto and the paper's arts section.
Dad was pretty smart. I joined the fulltime staff of The News as a reporter after my internship -- and a little over two years later, the Courier-Express was out of business.
Now, 32 years later (and for those doing the math, I want to emphasize that I was a child when I arrived), I'm leaving for a new challenge. I have had the rare privilege, over the past 13 years, to be the chief editor of my hometown paper, and it has been both eventful and fulfilling.
News Reporter Gene Warner's story in today's paper notes both the good times and some of the difficulties I've encountered.
The New York Times report on my appointment is here, including some kind words from Jill Abramson, the paper's first woman editor.
And Bill Mitchell of Florida's Poynter Institute describes the approach I will take in my new job, emphasizing the digital but also continuing a print column.
Taking the Times position means moving from Buffalo's Elmwood Village to New York City. (I'm not sure exactly where just yet and am considering crowdsourcing my apartment hunt.) I'm excited about that prospect and especially happy that this move will bring me closer to where my two children are in school -- my son, Alex, is in law school near Boston and my daughter, Grace, is an undergraduate in Manhattan.
As Warner's story notes, Managing Editor Brian Connolly -- a gifted journalist, highly competent newsroom manager and all-around great person -- will serve as interim editor while Publisher Stan Lipsey takes some time to find The News' next editor.
But I will be around for a few weeks, blogging frequently in this space on my usual topics. See you here.