LETTERS TO THE EDITOR



TIMES-STANDARD FIRED FOUR
Editor:
A page 7 article, "Times-Standard chain buys Tri-City," in your June edition contained an interesting summary of William Dean Singleton's 1998 actions in Humboldt County. The article appears to be accurate, although I have no specific knowledge of activities involving Singleton or the newspaper since last Dec. 1.

I do have specific knowledge of the activities of last fall, a roughly six-week period starting Nov. 1 in which the top four managers of the Times-Standard including myself were terminated. Other than ex-Publisher Stephan Sosinski's and my ousters, there was no mention in your article that the advertising director and circulation manager also were gone before Christmas.

I maintain that my dismissal as managing editor and head of the news department was calculated prior to any publication of an editorial cartoon regarding the Tip-Top Club or, for that matter, any mid-November reporting of the topless bar issue in Eureka. My dismissal was intended as part of a plan, ostensibly by an executive or executives of MediaNews Group, Garden State Newspapers Inc. or an affiliated organization representing the ownership, to replace the top management team at the Times-Standard.

What I don't understand is why the new publisher, Mark Richmond, and MediaNews continue seven months later to allow the Tip-Top editorial cartoon as the sole reason for my termination, when it was not.

And why did The North Coast Journal, KVIQ Channel 6 News and Editor & Publisher magazine not report the other terminations? I would have appreciated being contacted by any of these media organizations for my side of the story. In my 33 years as a professional newspaper journalist including 23 as a top editor I always insisted that reporters attempt to contact all sides to promote fairness. I'm sure The Journal insists on this basic journalistic standard, too, and that last month's error of not contacting me was an exception.

On an upbeat note, thanks, Journal, for giving the excellent editorial cartoonist, Hugh "Igor" Dalton, a new home to display his work. Hugh has twice been awarded in the state newspaper contest including just last July and I'm glad that North Coast readers again have the opportunity to marvel at his wit and artistic creativity.

Rex Wilson, Eureka

Managing Editor, 1989-1997, Times-Standard




STRUGGLE FOR ENROLLMENT
Editor:
I was excited to see the June article on the Pacific Dunes School ("Square Peg, Round Hole").

I was also delighted to note that many of the Pacific Dunes School scholars went through elementary school at Gateway Community School. Gateway and the Pacific Dunes have many common educational philosophies. Sadly, we also share the Pacific Dunes' struggle for enrollment. I think more parents, students and educators need to realize what terrific opportunities for alternative education exist in Humboldt County. Any interested parents should call Gateway Community School at 822-4721 for information.

Lynn Szabo, Blue Lake


Write to The Journal: ncjour@northcoast.com


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