Posts Tagged ‘Larry Ingrassia’
Julie Bloom has been named the culture editor of the International New York Times. She began freelancing for the Times in 2006, and joined the culture desk a year later as a web producer. Bloom was most recently online culture web editor.
I knew it was going to be quite the scene at Michael’s today when a little birdie told me that there was going to be a lunch for Liz Smith celebrating the grand dame of gossip’s upcoming birthday at Table One. Suffice to say I wasn’t disappointed. None other than Shirley MacLaine stopped by to say hello to Liz (more on why later), and I got to chat with the legendary actress about her guest-starring stint on Downton Abbey. While the entire restaurant swiveled in our general direction, I jumped up from my seat to ask about her experience on PBS’ smash hit and she couldn’t have been more gracious.
“I loved doing the show,” she told me. “Everyone was so welcoming and great about everything. I was amazed that no matter what the weather — because it rained a lot when we were shooting — they all went on as if the sun was shining. They were wonderfully professional.” Her character, Martha Levinson, appeared in only two episodes but left quite an impact on viewers — particularly when Martha sparred with Violet, the Dowager Countess played by the legendary Maggie Smith. “That was one of my favorite days on the set,” Ms. MacLaine told me of the scene where she and Ms. Smith sat for hours in a church pew waiting for the ill-fated wedding of Lady Edith to begin. “We spent eight hours talking about life, and we never ran out of things to say.” I bet. Before she dashed out the door — she only stayed long enough to say her hellos — I asked whether she’d be returning to the series and she said, “Yes. We start shooting soon. I’m looking forward to it.” So are we.
Now, back to Liz’s lunch (described as a “southern confab”), which Hearst’s Deb Shriver put together with scribe Julia Reed and ‘Mayor’ Joe Armstrong. Deb was putting the finishing touches on the table, which included a bouquet of yellow roses arranged in Joe’s Texas bronzed boot and a specially designed menu (fried chicken, collard greens and corn bread) featuring a photo of Liz at a year old. Liz and Joe have a long friendship that dates back to 1968 when Joe first arrived in New York and met the fellow Texan. They forged an unbreakable bond. “I didn’t know one person when I came here and found out she was raised a block from where my mama grew up in Fort Worth. She was the only person I met who I thought didn’t talk with an accent.” The two have been great pals ever since.
Southern belle Deb, who has written two fabulous books on New Orleans including the gorgeous Stealing Magnolias: Tales from a New Orleans Courtyard, surprised Liz with one of the most unusual birthday cakes ever served at Michael’s or anywhere else for that matter, and had a Brooklyn baker recreate the Steel Magnolias armadillo red velvet cake. Ms. MacLaine, as you might recall, was one of the stars of the 1989 film, and she arrived with the film’s screenwriter Robert Harling to jazz up the festivities. They departed before Michael’s staff paraded through the dining room with the life-size armadillo on a platter, raising more than a few eyebrows. Clearly thrilled by the gesture, Liz was served the head of the baked beast while the rest of the guests dug into the ‘carcass.’ Mmm… yummy.
Now that the buyouts are over, the New York Times has announced some changes to its masthead. According to the Times, the changes sought (the paper wanted 30 staffers to accept the offer) were “accomplished primarily through” the buyouts and therefore “layoffs were kept to a minimum.” That means that yes, there were some layoffs at the paper, but we’re just not sure who they were. Yet.
A brief roundup of the masthead changes:
- As expected, Larry Ingrassia is now an assistant managing editor for new initiatives
- Jason Stallman, most recently deputy sports editor, has been promoted to sports editor
- Janet Elder is now an assistant managing editor, “with responsibility for overseeing newsroom resources, including the budget, as well as dealing with compensation and staff development.”
- Ian Fisher is now an assistant managing editor for content operations
- Rick Berke will remain an assistant managing editor, but will now shift his focus to video
- Glenn Kramon, another assistant managing editor, will join the business department to oversee technology coverage
- A new culture editor will be named soon
With the deadline for accepting the buyout package offered by the New York Times looming, the paper’s top editors are bracing for what Daily Intelligencer describes as “a three-year plan to downsize the company as it migrates to a new business model.” That plan involves realignments as well as staff and budget cuts.
According to rumors, Jill Abramson is “begging and pleading” with editors to accept the buyout so that they don’t have to make too many cuts. Those feeling the heat the most include John Geddes, Rick Berke, Gerry Marzorati, Jim Roberts and Susan Edgerly.
The New York Times has named Dean Murphy the new editor of Business Day. He has been with the Times since 2000; most recently serving as deputy editor of Business Day. Prior to that Murphy was the Times’ national editor from 2005 to 2010.
The full note from Abramson is below.
David Gillen has been tapped by the New York Times to replace Tim O’Brien – who left for The Huffington Post – as its new Sunday Business Editor. Gillen came to the Times from Bloomberg News in 2007. He’s been Deputy Business Editor for the paper since last year.
Larry Ingrassia, Business Editor for the Times, had this to say about Gillen’s promotion:
As reporters who have worked with Dave on the finance team will attest – and other reporters in Bizday will soon have the pleasure of learning – he has a magical touch with copy, even when things are flying fast and furious.