Friday, April 30, 2010

Tom Moore digs up State Desk past

Tom Moore dug up a writeup with Fran Murphey photos about the 1974 State Desk wake, when State Desk and City Desk merged to form the Metropolitan "Superdesk." Fran's ever-ready camera photographed Ray Redmond, Pete Geiger, Jan Clark and John Olesky. Pat Englehart, Harry Liggett and Tim Smith were featured on a cake that Jan baked for John's birthday (Nov. 5).

It recalled a photo John used from time to time about the same wake, but in a different locale. The SD demise was toasted in a few places.

Click on 1974 State Desk wake to see the photo that Olesky has in a BJ Alums article about Pam McCarthy.

Click on the headline to see Tom Moore’s story and photos.

May 10 interviews air Saturday thru Tuesday 10 a.m.-7 p.m.

You can watch new interviews of eyewitnesses to the May 4, 1970 shootings of 13 Kent State students by the Ohio National Guard from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday on filmmaker/activist Michael Moore's website.

Four students were killed and nine others wounded.

Click on the headline during those times to go to Moore's site.

Go to

to see the schedule for Kent State's 40th anniversary observances.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Marv Katz & wife en route to daughter

Marvin Katz, who included the BJ in his 40-year career in journalism, public relations, freelance writing and PR consulting, and wife Joyce will fly to Kansas City on Thursday to be with their daughter, Lisa Pagel, who will have her fourth chemo treatment on Monday. Lisa is a Kent State grad who did her J-School internship at the BJ and became director of news services for the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She quit that job to go to Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, with her husband, Major Thomas Pagel. Marv & Joyce also will be observing Lisa's birthday.

Click on the headline to see Marv's March report to BJ Alums on Lisa's cancer and the link to Lisa's website where she chronicles her situation regularly.

BJ retiree Harold McElroy's 5-month-old great-granddaughter dies

Reagan Lacole ``Doo' Edwards, 5 months, died April 23 at Akron Children's Hospital. She was the great-granddaughter of BJ business department retiree Harold McElroy and wife Linda. The McElroys live on Pawleys Island, SC, near former BJ printer Dick Latshaw and wife Pat.

Click on the headline to read the obituary.

Trip down memory lane

BY JOHN OLESKY (1969-96)

When former Daily Kent Stater editor Saul Daniels pulled out a photo of the 1970 Stater staff to see how many people would be recognized after all these years, one thing stood out for me:

Hey, I worked with at least five of them!

In that 1970 Stater staff photo were Stu Feldstein, Terry Oblander, Paul Tople and Paula Stone Tucker. Chuck Ayers, who wasn’t in the photo, was part of the Stater staff, too.

After leaving the BJ, Feldstein worked for Business Week before becoming co-founder and president of SMR Research Corporation, which helps businesses scope out competitors. Oblander left the BJ for the Plain Dealer, retired and returned as the BJ’s features specialist for Medina County. Tople already was working part-time for the BJ and became full-time after his graduation. Paul has been a BJ photographer for more years than I can count. Ayers was a BJ cartoonist till his retirement and still does the “Crankshaft” comic strip. Zitrin, after entertaining the newsroom from his Sports Department desk with his antics, wound up at APB News as national correspondent. Tucker became a psychologist after her BJ State Desk days, mostly in California but, before her retirement, in Akron.

As for Saul Daniels, who was promoting 40th anniversary events tied to the May 4 day that National Guardsmen killed four and wounded nine other KSU students, his resume includes the Los Angeles Times and L.A. Examiner, Miami Herald, Orlando Sentinel and other newspapers.

To see photos of the BJ alums during their Daily Kent Stater days, and other pictures related to the 1970 Kent State tragedy, click on the headline.

Go to

to see the schedule for the 40th anniversary observances.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Michael Moore site to livecast KSU Truth Tribunal May 1-4

Filmmaker Michael Moore's website -- -- will broadcast Laurel Krause's Truth Tribunal May 1-4. Laurel, sister of Allison Krause, slain by Ohio National Guardmen May 4, 1970, has invited anyone who witnessed the killing of four Kent State students and the wounding of nine others, and families affected by the results, to show up and videotape their thoughts. Email Laurel at

if you wish to participate.

For more information on the Truth Tribunal, go to

Executive producer Mark Mori's Emmy-winning documentary, "Kent State, The Day the War Came Home," will be re-released on DVD for the 40th anniversary.

Go to

for more details about 40th anniversary events at Kent State.

Killed on May 4 were Jeffrey Glenn Miller, Allison B. Krause, William Knox Schroeder and Sandra Lee Scheuer. Wounded were Joseph Lewis Jr., John R. Cleary, Thomas Mark Grace, Alan Michael Canfora, Dean R. Kahler (paralyzed from the chest down), Douglas Alan Wrentmore, James Dennis Russell, Robert Follis Stamps and Donald Scott MacKenzie.

Click on the headline to see the "War Came Home" cover and Laurel Krause's photo.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Two BJ alums on Cleveland Press Club's 40th anniversary May 4 Kent State panel

Cleveland Press Club president Ed Byers sent this email to the BJ Alums blog:

Jan Leach and Chuck Ayers are among the all-star panelists for this look back at May 4, 1970 through the eyes of journalists who were there that day. Presented by the Press Club of Cleveland. All B-J Alums are certainly welcome to attend, May Fourth, 8 AM to 9AM, KIVA Student Center, KSU Main Campus. Event flier is attached.

Thank You. I enjoy your site.

Leach once was the BJ's editor. Ayers is a former BJ cartoonist and does the syndicated "Crankshaft" comic strip.

Click on the headline to read the Press Club flier.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Comment on Ganley photo in BJ

Usually we put comments under "Comments" for the BJ Alums article being commented on. But, for technical reasons, we can't get it to work that way this time. So here is the comment that former BJ editor Tom Moore (and the blog editor) tried unsuccessfully to post under the "Comments" section of the Ganley photo article:

If a picture is worth a thousand words, how many votes is it worth?

That's what hit me when I saw the big space-filling photo on Page One of the Beacon Journal with the name of a candidate for office standing out on the photo of a car? Why run a photo at all — or at least run a generic one.

The story did mention other auto dealers but my thoughts immediately went to something I read about Ganley auto group where the old man is running for Congress. That group is a big advertiser in both the BJ and the Plain Dealer.

My long-time friend and colleague, Abe Zaidan, had some thoughts about it on his website, Grumpy Abe.

I’m sure the image of that emblem on the front of the car pictured will stay with a lot of people and when it comes to a choice they’ll probably remember the name “Ganley” and vote for it because it’s so familiar.

I know we old-times are always looking back on the old days, and you’re right.

That would not have happened under some of the past editors and sub-editors. They recognized what it would like.

As I said, a picture is worth a thousand words . . .

To see the original BJ Alums article, click on the headline.

Beacon Journal got 17 first places in Cleveland Press Club awards

Beacon Journal managing editor Doug Oplinger, who never saw a John Deere product he didn't like, is understandably proud of the BJ winning 29 Ohio Excellence in Journalism Awards from the Press Club of Cleveland. The BJ had 17 first places and in six categories took both awards.

BJ's goodies:

DP-1 Spot News
Paul Tople
Akron Beacon Journal
Don’t Shoot

DP-4 Sports Feature
Ed Suba, Jr.
Akron Beacon Journal

DP-4 Sports Feature
Phil Masturzo
Akron Beacon Journal
Second Place

DP-4 Sports Feature
Paul Tople
Akron Beacon Journal
A little left

DP-5 General Feature
Ed Suba, Jr.
Akron Beacon Journal

DP-7 Portrait/Personality Photography
Ed Suba, Jr.
Akron Beacon Journal
New face, new life

D-1C Breaking News-Ongoing Story
Ed Meyer and Stephanie Warsmith
Akron Beacon Journal
Firefighter Episode

D-1C Breaking News-Ongoing Story
Phil Trexler
Akron Beacon Journal
Firestone Park attack

D-2A General News-Single Story
Jim Carney
Akron Beacon Journal
Ties that bind

D-2B General News-Multiple Stories
Cheryl Powell
Akron Beacon Journal
Life on Call

D-3A Features-Personality Profile
Jim Carney
Akron Beacon Journal
Vet’s degree defies odds

D-3A Features-Personality Profile
Jewell Cardwell
Akron Beacon Journal
23 years of addiction

D-5 Investigative
Bob Downing
Akron Beacon Journal
Cars Fail E-Check, Fall off the Map

D-8 Features-Arts & Entertainment
Kerry Clawson
Akron Beacon Journal
Renee Fleming

NM-1 Newspaper-Web Site Design
Akron Beacon Journal

OP-1A Columns-General News
Bob Dyer
Akron Beacon Journal
Science’ center is all about the bible

OP-1C Columns-Business
Betty Lin-Fisher
Akron Beacon Journal
Caution is Golden

OP-1D Columns-Lifestyle
Lisa Abraham
Akron Beacon Journal
Don’t take secret recipe to grave

OP-3A Reviews/Criticism-Single Article
Kerry Clawson
Akron Beacon Journal
Joffrey Ballet thrills Blossom audience

OP-5 Obituary
Jim Carney
Akron Beacon Journal
Alfred McMoore

OP-5 Obituary
Marilyn Miller
Akron Beacon Journal
Pilot’s burial gives loved ones closure

OP-7 Analysis
Dennis J. Willard, David Knox
Akron Beacon Journal
Ohio Vote

OP-8 Food Writing
Lisa Abraham
Akron Beacon Journal
Start Chefs

OP-8 Food Writing
Lisa Abraham
Akron Beacon Journal
Banana Bonanza

OP-9 Travel Writing
Bob Downing
Akron Beacon Journal
It’s a Breeze

OP-10 Technology Writing
Mary Beth Breckenridge
Akron Beacon Journal
Time to Cut the Cord

OP-13 Election 2009 Coverage
Stephanie Warsmith
Akron Beacon Journal

PV-3A Infographics, Daily Newspaper
Rick Steinhauser
Akron Beacon Journal
Infocision Stadium

PV-5B Spread or Multiple Page Design, Broadsheets
Akron Beacon Journal
Infocision Stadium

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

News story or plug for a major advertiser running for office? What's your take?

Abe Zaidan, former BJ staffer and writing coach, was a bit miffed at the BJ devoting the upper half of Wednesday's Page A1 to auto sales, with Ganley's name prominently displayed on the car's front tags in the photo. To make sure the BJ Alums blog took notice, Abe emailed: "The BJ reached a new groveling low today when it devoted the upper half of p-1 to a political candidate - and major advertiser."

Here's how Abe expressed his feelings on his Grumpy Abe web site:

BJ: Selling cars, or political candidates?
DID YOU SEE THE front page of the Beacon Journal today? It couldn't have been more useful for conservative Republican auto-dealer Tom Ganley's congressional campaign had his own people laid out the page. A huge photo of one of his Toyotas with the Ganley trademark license tag quite prominent in brilliant red. The story was about how local auto sales are accelerating. Oh? Since more people look at newspaper photos than read the actual article, this one was - how can we say it? - at least subliminal. (By the way, Ganley is running against U.S. Rep Betty Sutton, a Democrat, in the 13th congressional District.)

Your comments on the BJ placement and Abe's reaction?

The quote that rocked me was from Ganley Auto Group vice president Ken Ganley: "My family has owned dealerships for 42 years. March was the best month we had in 42 years."

No one at the BJ thought to question that claim, in the midst of the staggering economy and automaker bailouts? Former State Desk Editor Pat Englehart must be spinning in his grave.

Click on the headline to go to the Grumpy Abe web site. Warning: It's not for faint-hearted conservatives or Republicans.

Another BJ alums author heard from

After the BJ Alums article by Tom Moore about Stuart Warner's book-signing for his "Jock" appeared, we got this email from Roger Snell, another BJ alum who wrote "Root for the Cubs," which disputes that Babe Ruth actually called the home run shot against Charlie Root, as legend has it.

Here's Roger's email:

I enjoy following your blog and the story of the BJ alums. I got to see Stuart down here for a Lexington book-signing last month. I introduced him to the same publisher who launched my book.

With Regina (Brett), Stuart and me, that's three ex-BJ'ers with books out in the same year. There is life after the newsroom.

Enjoyed your recent updates about Bob Paynter and Keith McKnight, too.

Seeing the photo of Charlene Nevada at Stuart's signing up North just brings a big smile to my face after all these years. Those old days were times filled with so much laughter and so much incredible talent. Such a shame what has happened to newspapers and investigative reporting.

More details on my shameless self-plugging at

Thanks for keeping all the gang united, no matter how far away we've all spread.

Roger Snell

"Down here" for Roger is Frankfurt, in Kentucky, the state where Stuart once lived and worked at the Lexington Herald.

Snell, 51, lives in Frankfort with wife Linda and daughters Rachel and Hannah and administers a marketing program called Kentucky Proud that helps farmers transition away from tobacco and find retail markets for alternative crops such as fruits, vegetables and more.

Snell won a number of awards throughout his 18-year newspaper career, including the Silver Gavel, the American Bar Association’s top national journalism award, in 1992 for his investigation of ethical abuses on the Ohio Supreme Court. The Ohio Academy of Trial Lawyers named Snell the Ohio Reporter of the Year in 1992 and 1993.

Click on the headline for a photo of Snell and another of the cover of his "Root for the Cubs" book.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Connie Bloom's art quilts schedule

QSDS Voice magazine publisher/editor Connie Bloom, former BJ staffer, will be displaying her fiber art, also known as art quilts, at the Cain Park festival July 10-11 in Cleveland Heights, Medina Art in the Park July 18, Akron Arts Expo July 24-25, Artapalooza Aug. 28 in Green's Boettler Park, Kent Art in the Park Sept. 11-12 and possibly at the Taste of Hudson Sept. 5-6, which is where I discovered her post-BJ life a year ago.

Click on the headline to see the BJ Alums article about Connie's QSDS magazine.

Elaine Schoenleb marks 100th birthday.

Friends and family members gathered at Sumner at Ridgewood Saturday to celebrate the 100th birthday of Elaine Schoenleb. She is the widow of the late Edwin Schoenleb, a former editor and writer for the Beacon Journal. He joined the Beacon Journal staff in 1942. He retired as news editor in 1972, when he was 65, but continued as the newspaper's travel writer until 1991, when he retired again.

[Thanks to Dave Boerner for this post.  This is news we would hate to miss.]

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Tom Moore goes to a book-signing

Stuart Warner signs book for Tom               Debbie Van Tassel with Amy and Dot Moore

Has anybody sat down and totaled up the number of those in the Beacon Journal family who have gone on to become an author?

There have been a bunch.

Latest to join those ranks is Stuart Warner who, after leaving the BJ, put in a few years up North along with a lot of the talent that made the BJ a top notch paper at one time.

[Blog note: Also see our April 14 article on Regna Brett’s first book “God Never Blinks: 50 Lessons for Life's Little Detours ” ]

Met Stuart Saturday night at a book signing party in Hudson for friends and former colleagues from both papers.

His book is called “Jock, a coach’s story”. It’s the story of Jock Sutherland one of the most successful
and respected coaches in Kentucky High school history.

But this was a chance to see some of the folks I always miss…the biggest drawback to leaving the BJ, whether to a new job or to retire.

Of course Stuart’s wife, Debbie Van Tassel was there, she’s still working at the PD. Their daughter Denise came in from New York for the party.

And that was a chance for my daughter Amy (a former BJ weekend copy kid) to renew an acquaintance from a few years ago—Amy was Denise’s first babysitter.

There were a lot of folks there that I didn’t know.

One guy I ran into that I haven’t seen in many years was Steve Love, former columnist and staffer for the BJ. He says he’s completed his master’s degree and will be teaching.

Jane Snow was there. I only got to say “hi” to her. Then Art Krummel and wife Char Nevada walked in---looking as if they’d just come in from a sunny beach…, which they had…just back from a Caribbean vacation.

Art is devoting his time to painting these days (no, not houses). He’s an accomplished artist and will be showing some of his work this summer at the Cuyahoga Valley Arts Festival.

There may have been a couple of other folks that I didn’t recognize right off.

That’s understandable since a lot of years have gone by.

Which reminds me that the other day of walking with an old-time BJ retiree at Chapel Hill Mall. He told me of running into a staffer and how the guy had aged and changed. He said he hardly recognized him.

I couldn’t resist: I said to him: “Well, have you looked in the mirror lately?”

I’m sure a lot more of the BJ family showed up during the evening. But I was getting past this old man’s bedtime, so wife Dorothy and Amy joined in the goodbyes and we headed home.
        Art Krummel and Charlene Nevada                                      Denise Warner and Amy Moore

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Paul McGough, press room retiree, dies

McGough was a press room retiree.
Paul Edward McGough, age 83, died peacefully at home on April 14 following an extended illness.

Paul was born in Akron, Ohio on Sept. 30, 1926 to Vernon and Kathryn McGough. He lived his life in Firestone Park, attended Garfield High School and was a member of St. Paul Catholic Church. He was
a World War II Veteran, serving in the U.S. Navy in the South Pacific. After the war, he attended Kent State University and married the love of his life, Dorothy Flechler, who preceded him in death in April, 2009. He was a devoted and loving husband, father and grandfather. He was a kind and generous man and well respected by all who knew him. He was very proud of all his children and grandchildren, who gave him great joy. Paul retired from the Akron Beacon Journal in 1988 after 35 years of service. He was a member of the Ancient Order of Hibernians and a member of the National Association of Clock and Watch Collectors, where he was a known as a man of integrity and a skilled tradesman.

Preceded in death by wife, Dorothy; son, Dale; daughter, Paula Ann; grandson, Daniel and sister, Gerri; he is survived by daughters, Donna (Jim) Falanga and Sandra Murray; sons, John, Wayne, Patrick (Patrice), Lee (Dawn), and Robert (Ruth) and daughter-in-law, Tanya. He will be deeply missed by his 17 grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren. He is also survived by sisters, Peggy (Dick) Piercy and Barbara (Bill) Round; sisters-in-law, Ruth Magoulick, Elaine Jackson, Mary Jacobs and Gertrude Flechler; and many nieces and nephews.

Calling hours will be Sunday, 2 to 5 p.m. at the Dunn-Quigley Funeral Home Akron Chapel (811 Grant St.). Mass of Christian Burial will be 10 a.m. Monday at St. Paul Catholic Church. Interment at Holy Cross Cemetery where the VFW Post 3383 will render military services. Memorial donations may be made to St. Paul Catholic Church, 1580 Brown St., Akron, OH 44301 or Akron-Canton Food Bank, 350 Opportunity Parkway, Akron, OH 44307.
[Beacon Journal, Akron, OH, Friday, April 16, 2010, page B5. col. 2 ]

Friday, April 16, 2010

Connie, controversy, censorship


The controversy over Connie Bloom’s review of renegade quilt artist legend Nancy Crow’s exhibit in Columbus in issue No. 1 of QSDS Voice is a major topic in issue No. 2 of the quarterly online magazine.

So much so that former Beacon Journal staffer Connie’s web site, which had 4,000 hits before the initial issue came out, is nearing a quarter-million visits three months later.

Letters to publisher/editor Connie Bloom's QSDS (as in Quilt Service Design Symposium) range from Connie’s critique being an “attack” to attagirls. The letters are from such far-flung places as South Carolina, Maryland, Toronto, Arizona, Wisconsin, Illinois, California and Cleveland.

Issue No. 2 also deals with censorship.

Deborah Fell’s “Enthesopathy” art quilt was displayed in 2002 at the United Nations Building in New York City. The exhibit’s theme was showing how pain affected people. Deborah was, well, Exhibit A. She was dealing with enthesopathy, an arthritic condition affecting the tendons and ligaments.

Carle Clinic in Urbana, Illinois purchased the art quilt and hung it in the Orthopedic Department lobby area for several years. Then one person complained that the work was pornographic. It was taken down.

After several years, the departments in the clinic and hospital moved and "Enthesopathy: Weaving a Web of Pain" hangs in
its new location.

Connie will be going on the QSDS Arts Tour of Mexico October 23-Nov. 2, 2010 in Mexico City and about a dozen other cities and villages.

The next QSDS symposium will be June 1-11 in the Ramada Plaza Hotel and Conference Center in Columbus.

Connie, once my co-worker in the BJ Features Department, took a Beacon buyout in 2008 and plunged full-time into fabric art, after a few years of notable dabbling. She has a working studio at 111 N. Main Street in Akron, Red Light Galleries (a former bordello), next door to Luigi’s. Call ahead at (330) 472-0161 if you want to meet Connie, who married Bob Shields in 2008 after 10 years of togetherness.

Click on the headline to judge for yourself whether “Enthesopathy” is pornography. You’ll also see other QSDS Voice photos, work by Connie and the Features Department faux beach party while the boss was away from two decades ago.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Filling the bill at the BJ retirees lunch

          Tom Moore and oldest daughter, Carol                    Cal Deshong and Carl Nelson

There were at least five at the monthly lunch of Beacon Journal retirees this afternoon at Papa Joe's in the Valley.

Tom's oldest daughter, Carol, attended the lunch with him. She was a copy kid on weekends about 40 years ago and fondly remembers filling the paste pots. She also worked about a year on the switchboard until the switchboard was phased out.

Tom provided these photos. If  the photos show all those attending
then Tom and daughter represented  the editorial side while Calvin Deshong, Carl Nelson and Al Hunsicker (at right) were the contingent from the printers' side.

Another PD Pulitzer finalist plus Regina's book

The Plain Dealer had another Pulitzer finalist in the commentary categroy this year.
This time it was Phillip Morris who was named “For his columns that close the distance between the
reader and the rough streets of the city, confronting hard realities without leaving people to feel hopeless.”

Check out his columns.
PD columnist Regina Brett, whose first book has just been published, was named a Pulitzer Prize finalist twice, in 2009 and 2008

Her book “God Never Blinks: 50 Lessons for Life's Little Detours ”. is an off-shoot of a column she wrote when she turned 50 about the 50 lessons life taught her.

Grand Central Publishing, a division of Hachette Book Group (formerly Time Warner) is the publisher. It is available in paperback for $17.59 (Barnes&Noble memcber $12,86), CD $19.96, mp3 $14.09 and Ebook $9.99.

The first sentence in the book:

“Everything can change in the blink of an eye. But don't worry; God never blinks.”                        

Visit Regina’s website to read a little self-bragging by this former BJ type.

You also can check her out on facebook or go to to read her columns.

Barberton Herald charges for online content

An anonymous comment notes that the Barberton Herald now charges for online content.

Here’s the information from the Herald’s website:

The Barberton Herald has launched a brand new Web site. This interactive site is easy to navigate and has many new features including videos, public forum, games, movies, world news and more. Switch your subscription from the traditional print edition to the online edition FREE for a limited time. You will receive e-mail alerts when the newest edition is available online and when breaking news has been posted.

There are many benefits to making the switch. There will be no more delivery delays because of the post office. The paper will be delivered online on Wednesdays instead of Thursdays. The paper can be read page by page with magnification. Readers can interact by posting comments on the stories, up coming events on a community calendar and views directly on the web site. There are also many opportunities for the community to become involved by uploading videos, audio and photographs of their own.

WARNING!!!  The online Herald pages will become inactive for non-subscribers on April 1, 2010. You must have an online subscription to read the online pages.
Subscribe now by clicking the subscribe button on the left menu.

You may make the switch from a printed edition to the online edition anytime. Simply use the link below to E-mail your information to the office and we will start the switch.

If you would like to read the Barberton Herald online and do not currently have a subscription, simply "click" the subscribe button on the left to make your selection.

Subscriptions To The Online Newspaper

12 Months (No Print Issues Mailed) - $15.00
Subscriptions To Print & Online Newspaper
12 Months (In 44203 Zip Code Only) - $28.00
12 Months (In State of Ohio) - $35.00
12 Months (Out of State of Ohio) - $45.00
12 Months (Out of U.S.) - $75.00
Subscriptions To The Printed Newspaper
12 Months (In 44203 Zip Code Only) - $18.00
12 Months (In State of Ohio) - $25.00
12 Months (Out of State of Ohio) - $35.00
12 Months (Out of U.S.) - $65.00       

Blog Question: Why was it necessary to leave an anonymous comment to provide this information?  This blog permits anonymous comments unless they are mean-spiritied.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

More newspapers charging for online access

In the mid-90s, at least 45 U.S. newspapers charged for online access, though almost all of them later hopped over the fence to the free side. Now, the paywall brigade is rising again—albeit slowly. On the eve of this year’s American Society of News Editors conference, where the question of charging for digital content will be center stage,  a list of the local and metro papers in the U.S. that have paywalls has expanded. There are  more than 20 that charge online readers up to $35 a month, in an attempt either to preserve their print circulation or to add a new stream of revenue. They range from major metros like Newsday to sub-20,000 circulation papers in small northeast towns that have charged online readers for years.

And this list is about to get longer. At least six other papers have announced they will put up some sort of online paywall in the coming months. How these papers do financially with their new paywalls will determine, in part, whether hundreds of other papers decide to take the same step.

See the list

Monday, April 12, 2010

Want to join the WVU Journalism faculty?

With all the buyouts and layoffs, perhaps some BJ alums might be interested in joining the West Virginia University School of Journalism faculty. The openings, according to WVU J-School Dean Maryanne Reed:

Endowed Professorship in Integrated Marketing Communications

The P.I. Reed School of Journalism, West Virginia University, seeks a dynamic and innovative educator to fill an endowed professorship in integrated marketing communications, beginning August 16, 2010 or January 1, 2011. The Harrison/Omnicom Endowed Professorship in Integrated Marketing Communications tenure-track or tenured faculty position at the Assistant or Associate Professor level. Candidates for this position must be able to teach graduate-level courses in advertising, public relations and integrated marketing communications and develop curricula for the School’s online IMC Master’s Degree program. Candidates must also demonstrate the ability to conduct scholarly research and publish in appropriate academic venues. Depending on the candidate’s expertise, possible courses to teach could include introduction to IMC, marketing research & analysis, audience insight, brand equity management, creative strategy & execution, direct marketing, PR concepts & strategy, emerging media & the market, and/or campaigns. Successful candidates must have at least 10 years of significant industry experience and a Ph.D. in a relevant discipline. Experience with designing and launching a doctoral program is desirable.

The review of applicants will begin April 1, 2010, and continue until the position is filled.

Send application letter, academic vita and the names of three references and their contact information to: Chair, Harrison/Omnicom Search Committee, P.I. Reed School of Journalism, P.O. Box 6010, West Virginia University, Morgantown, WV 26506-6010.


Teaching Assistant Professor - Journalism

The P.I. Reed School of Journalism at West Virginia University is seeking a full-time non-tenure track Teaching Assistant Professor with expertise in writing and reporting in the digital newsroom, beginning August 16, 2010. This faculty member will be responsible for revising, teaching and managing the School’s introductory writing and reporting courses, including Media Writing and Reporting for the Print Media. The faculty member will revise these courses to emphasize social media, new media, audience interactivity, media convergence and Web-based writing. In addition, the faculty member will meet regularly with other instructors of the same courses and help them transition to the new curriculum. Depending on the person’s area of expertise, the faculty member may teach other courses, but his or her primary responsibility will be to ensure the School’s core writing courses are keeping current with the evolving industry. The ideal candidate will be both grounded in the traditional ideals and practices of journalism while also having explored the new realms and challenges of the digital era. Significant professional experience and a Master’s degree in a relevant field are required.

The review of applicants will begin April 1, 2010, and continue until the position is filled.

Please send a letter of application, resume/curriculum vita and contact information for three references to Teaching Assistant Professor Search Committee Chair, P.I. Reed School of Journalism, West Virginia University, P.O. Box 6010, Morgantown, WV 26506-6010.


Assistant Professor in Advertising

The P. I. Reed School of Journalism at West Virginia University is seeking a tenure-track assistant professor in advertising who can teach multi-level courses in advertising and integrated marketing communications, develop innovative curriculum and conduct scholarly research that reflects and serves a changing industry. The position will begin August 2010.The ideal candidate will have a Ph.D. Degree, a background in college level teaching, and at least three years of professional experience. Candidates with a relevant Masters Degree and significant experience will also be considered. Experience in digital and interactive marketing communications is particularly desirable.

The review of applicants will begin April 1, 2010, and continue until the position is filled.

Please send a letter of application, curriculum vitae, and three reference letters to Advertising Search Committee, West Virginia University, P.I. Reed School of Journalism, 1511 University Avenue, P.O. Box 6010, Morgantown, WV 26506.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Catching up with . . . Keith McKnight

Keith McKnight, the deputy Metro editor who took an October 2008 buyout from the Beacon Journal, is on the wagon after 30 years with the BJ. That would be the D. Kay's French Waffles wagon. Keith and wife Kay (whose name is on the wagon) make the rounds of fairs and festivals, selling their concessions.

After Keith left the BJ, at the same time that a score of veterans with centuries of combined experience did, he joined his wife in the enterprise.

When they're not selling waffles, or continuing to live in Wadsworth on Leatherman Road, they have a Christmas tree farm in Southern Ohio to visit.

Keith and Kay wound up at the altar because . . . well, let him tell it:

"I was at the Willoughby News Herald," Keith recalls. "David McClain, a teacher at the University of Maine, wanted to be a reporter. So I hired him.

"David introduced me to Kay. We met first by telephone and then on a blind date. It progressed from there." To marriage and, after Keith's BJ departure, to the French waffles connection.

How did David know Kay? They are McClains, brother and sister, in fact. Kay lived in Niles, Ohio.

Keith has been on the receiving end of a lot of awards for his journalistic endeavors. Such as sharing the Worth Bingham Prize for investigative journalism in 1990 with Bob Paynter and Andy Zajac. Ex-BJ Ted Gup, chair of the Journalism Department and professor of journalism at Emerson College in Boston, won the same prize in 1980 with the Washington Post. Dave Hess won it in 1978 with the BJ. Woodward and Bernstein won it in 1972 for the Nixon/Watergate thing, along with a Pulitzer.

Keith and Bob Paynter also were involved in a BJ Pulitzer, in 1994 for "A Question of Color" series.

Thursday, April 08, 2010

'GOD WILLING' I am still alive

Click on the picture for a larger image

With BJ bloopers on here and Conrad Ott's passing in the news I just wanted to post this blooper from the Monday, June 20, 1988 page one.

I always liked Conrad Ott he was an easy guy to photograph and even came to my house to pick up a picture from my web site bringing some of his home made honey as a gift.


Sunday, April 04, 2010

~the BJ Alums blog guys

Ruth Kenny, 85, dies on vacation

She was employed in the Beacon Journal accounting department
in the 1970s and 1980s
Ruth I. Kenny, 85 years, of Akron died March 31, 2010, while on vacation in Ft Myers, Florida.

A life resident of the area, she retired from The Akron Beacon Journal after 25 years service. She
was a member of Reimer Road Baptist Church.

Preceded in death by her parents, Roddie and Franie Robinson Figg; husbands, George Bent and Robert Kenny; she is survived by son, Tom (Therses) Bent of Strongsville; daughters, Susan (Tim) Ujvari of Hudson, Carol Rentz of Hartville; step-children, Cathy (Rodger) Stamm and Tom (Cathie) Kenny; 12 grandchildren; 11 great-grandchildren and sister, Nellie Robertson.

Funeral services will be 11 a.m. Monday, April 5, 2010, at the Schlup-Pucak Funeral Chapel, 788 Kenmore Blvd. where friends may call 9:30 a.m. until time of service. Pastor Cary Wadle officiating. Burial at Rose Hill Burial Park.
[Beacon Journal, Akron, OH, Sunday, April 4, 2010, page B6, col.2]

Saturday, April 03, 2010

A letter from Dick McLinden

Here’s a letter from Copy Desk retiree Dick McLinden who still lives in North Canton:

My apologies for not responding sooner.. It took almost a week to get over the shock of learning that somebody actually cared about whatever happened to McLinden!

As I told you, I'm a total computer illiterate as of now. Everybody and his brother seems to be bound to the computer these days, and I guess I never did run with the herd.

But it hasn't been easy. When I get the urge to compute, I go out to lunch or something. Boy, am I well fed!

When I'm not eating I'm taking pills or going to the doctor -- or the bathroom. Marcus Welby would be proud. Seems I'm keeping his colleagues in business. Let's see ... a second knee replacement, triple heart bypass, carpal tunnel surgery, cataract surgery, the heart failure before Christmas, a pacemaker and defibrillator, and maybe a couple of distemper shots from a passing veterinarian sometime when I wasn't looking.

They tell me that Aetna is considering a whole new category for me -- way too risky.

Anyway, you asked about the old, golden days in the Sunday Department. And that's just what they were. I only had to worry about the Beacon Magazine when Kenny Cole was off sick or something. My guess is that they just wanted to keep Lary Bloom and Bierman from getting us into a lawsuit.

The News and Views section was fun. I was pretty much responsible for it after Lloyd Stoyer left, and that was far and away my best time at the Beacon. I got to write Biogaphy in Brief for several years as well as edit copy. That's why I went there. But Ben Maidenburg's departure changed that in a hurry. No more handling his weekly column. No more picking the Sunday features I thought most appropriate.

So that was that. Shippy and I got the axe from that department within a few months of each other. Mostly filling space like Art Cullison, Donn Gaynor and some other rejects who didn't fit in well with the new grand design. Not that it was all sackcloth and ashes. I liked the people on the copy desk for the most part. With an exception or two, of course.

But no JSK and no Maidenburg took away the feeling that I was helping contribute to the best paper in Ohio. So retirement couldn't come too soon. I have a hunch some of the rest of you felt that way, too.

There it is. My BJ career in a cracked nutshell. Do with it as you will. Sorry aoout the lack of a photo. An old one of Tyrone Power will do nicely.

Keep up your great work.

Thursday, April 01, 2010

There were these two chicks in a hot tub and . . .

I thought that would get your attention, particularly the guys.

Maybe you remember a photo of Pam McCarthy, Cathy Strong and Cathy's daughter, Penelope,  purloined from Facebook and posted on the BJ Alums blog Feb. 6, 2010. It showed the trio in snowy, chilling Salem, Massachusetts in January.

I had asked for a report from Pam, like Cathy a former Beacon Journal State Desk reporter in the 1970s, on the reunion. You may notice that this is April. You kind of missed the deadline by a bit, Pam.

But she had good reasons: "It's been one thing after another -- taking care of my mom two days a week, a trip to Florida, (a family medical diagnosis), a business trip to Arbonne's National Training Conference in Vegas, and working on my new business" as independent consultant, district manager for Arbonne International.

As for the reunion, let the two "chicks," Pam and Cathy, tell it:

When two former Akron Beacon Journal reporters get together after a gap of nearly 35 years, the atmosphere is vociferous laughter .... non-stop. Cathy Strong and Pam McCarthy worked on the State Desk in the 1970s, at one time working every morning together with Doug Oplinger and the late Ray Redmond. During those early years, they were inseparable and got involved in each other’s personal lives, as well as morning journalism debates.

They lost touch, however, when Cathy moved to New Zealand to be a journalist for three decades, and Pam worked in public relations before becoming an award-winning journalism educator at North Canton Hoover High School. During that time Pam had daughter Beth and twins Kate and Michael, while Cathy had three daughters: Rebecca, Penelope and Amanda.

The power of the internet, especially the BJ Alums blog, brought them back together. Currently Cathy is teaching convergence journalism at Zayed University in Dubai, in the Middle East; while Pam is retired from teaching and building her own business with Arbonne International.

When Cathy made a trip to Salem, Massachusetts, to visit her daughter Penelope in January, Pam jumped on a plane for a two-day reunion.

Salem was cold, freezing, and opposite to what Cathy is used to in her new home in the Middle East desert, but the wine, hot tub and dynamic dialogue warmed the atmosphere.

A lot happens in 30+ years, so there was plenty to catch up on.

“Pam was always so insightful and a wonderful wordsmith. She used to be such a caring person, so it is understandable that she was so successful at teaching,” said Cathy. “I was so amazed that she looks exactly the same – smooth skin, twinkly eyes, warm personality.”

Pam confessed she was a little nervous about whether the two would have much in common once they rehashed the past, but was delighted to find that, while Cathy looked different (she’s blonde now!) and sounded different (Kiwi accent), she’s the same fun-loving, intelligent and articulate woman who emigrated to New Zealand years ago.

And while they did reminisce about their Beacon Journal years, they spent most of their time talking about where their lives had taken them. They discussed their careers, the joys of raising their children, and the hotly contested election of a new Senator to replace the legendary Ted Kennedy. (They were in disagreement on that issue.)

Oh, and they went to a “hot yoga” class, which nearly did Pam in, despite her regular workouts at the North Canton YMCA. (Who does yoga for an hour in a 95-degree room?) Cathy and her beautiful daughter Penelope did and handled the workout with ease. Cathy has since found a yoga class in Dubai.

Pictures to share with other BJ retirees were difficult to select. All showed the two laughing, which they did the entire reunion. When Cathy next visits the U.S., she has an invitation to Pam’s house in North Canton. Pam says Cathy needs to go see the new convergence journalism building at Kent State University, where Cathy was the first student to receive a Master’s Degree in Journalism. And there will be a grand reunion, to which anyone who wants to see Cathy will be invited. Stay tuned.

Oh, yeah, the two "chicks" in a hot tub? Click on the headline and you'll see that and more.