Asher named McClatchy Washington bureau chief

Romenesko Memos
Jim Asher has been the bureau’s investigations editor. A memo about his bureau chief appointment mentions other changes: Mark Seibel becomes chief of correspondents; Roy Gutman takes a new editing role focusing on connections with McClatchy newsrooms and the creation of an intra-company story exchange; and Gina Falcone-Rupp now leads the bureau’s digital news efforts. || Earlier: John Walcott resigns as McClatchy Washington bureau chief.


From: Gyllenhaal, Anders
Sent: Tuesday, February 15, 2011 2:39 PM
To: Wash Buro Everyone; mctinfo
Subject: Bureau leadership announcement/staff meeting at 3 p.m.

I’m pleased to announce that Jim Asher, the bureau’s investigations editor who has worked in a succession of editing and reporting roles at newspapers from the Philadelphia Inquirer to the Baltimore Sun, will become bureau chief as part of a reorganization of our operations.

Three new editing roles will be established as well: Mark Seibel, a veteran of foreign news, will become chief of correspondents, running our international bureaus and looking at ways of enhancing our foreign news operation; Roy Gutman will take a new editing role focusing on connections with McClatchy newsrooms and the creation of an intra-company story exchange. Gina Falcone-Rupp, who has worked in online news for 15 years, will lead the bureau’s digital news efforts.

Let’s plan to gather at 3 p.m. around the news desk for a short meeting on these plans.

Over the past two months, the bureau has been working on new approaches for coordinating with our newsrooms, placing new emphasis on enterprise, sharpening daily routines and revising our beat structure. Along with overseeing the daily operations of the bureau, Jim will lead our work putting these ideas into place in the coming months. He brings extensive experience and leadership abilities to this role, as well as a warm touch and a wry sense of humor. His style is a perfect fit for this bureau and its high performance staff as we look at how to position ourselves for the future.

Mark’s years of experience in world news, and deep knowledge of our business, make him well suited for the double duties of running our foreign bureaus and devising ways of expanding and rethinking approaches to providing global news. At a time with so many important stories developing around the world, we will look for ways of augmenting our foreign bureaus with partnerships, foundation funding and other innovations.

Roy’s editing role will be one in a number of steps to align the bureau with McClatchy newsrooms. He will lead the development of the story exchange that shares news stories and enterprise from McClatchy papers that are of broader interest. He’ll also work on developing sharing protocols within the company. Roy will work closely with McClatchy newsrooms to host ongoing discussions about coverage, story ideas and how to be certain we’re serving our newsrooms. In addition, Roy will work with a group of bureau reporters.

Gina brings a wide assortment of online news experience to overseeing our Washington digital strategy. She has worked in digital news since 1995, in roles in national, international news, sports, opinion and as executive editor and vice president of the McClatchy Interactive newsrooms. In addition to directing McClatchydc.com, Gina will lead a review of our online approaches with a focus on working closely with McClatchy websites and developing the bureau’s role in the Aurora project, the redesign for McClatchy news sites.

We are lucky to have such a strong editing lineup in the bureau. Jim will begin his new role immediately, while the other changes will start March 7. Please join me in congratulating our fellow staffers as they begin these new assignments.

–Anders

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