What a glorious 'It's a Wonderful Life' sort of day I have had.
Leaving the newsroom on my own terms: Wonderful. Leaving with doors open and the possibility of collaborating in the future: Priceless.
At newspapers, when someone leaves they send a parting note to the whole newsroom. It's just tradition. Some are poetic, some funny, some are bitter, some stained with tears.
I wrote mine this afternoon. I am leaving the newsroom for a job in journalism education. Before I pick up the new gig, as a Web managing editor at the Reynolds Center based at ASU, I am taking a week off, a week with no bosses. A week in which I hope to have many Perfect Moments.
Before I head off for that break, let me share my final thoughts in the newsroom and my parting message to those I leave behind.
Wow. I thought this note would be easier to write.
After 4½ years, 5 jobs, 6 bosses, 7 desks, countless colleagues and friends, I am warmed by how big and strong my Arizona Republic/azcentral family has become.
I thank each of you for the part you played in my time here. We have done some great work. We have worked long hours. We have kept each other buoyed during tough times and have enjoyed the fun and creative times together.
As I cleaned out my desk, I enjoyed these artifacts:
- the ever-popular ‘Newsroom Reorganization 2005’
- a well-thumbed 2007 Information Center job ‘catalogue’
- the short-lived best seller, Monday Concept Survey Oct. 2006
- a prescient July 24, 2005, business section with a CP headline “Bubble trouble?”
- a Ward Bushee (former editor) fold-up paper doll .. downloadable
- copies of the bane of my existence for several months … Pump Watch & its sexy cousin Energy Watch
- and several souvenir copies of December 2006’s “Whatever Happened to… “ year-end feature.
All of these items are on auction and the proceeds will be shared among this year’s Pulliams (super special interns).
As I said to many of you around cake a few minutes ago, this has not been an easy decision to leave, but I am drawn to an opportunity that is very exciting. I have enjoyed my time here and am grateful for all the opportunities that came my way and those that I went out and grabbed.
I urge everyone here to speak up, share ideas, stick your neck out and make your time here an adventure. Last night someone asked me what skills they would need to work online. No. 1 is the skill to speak up and let those desires be known. And beyond that, you’re a journalist. You’ve already got all the skills necessary. The tools, you can learn.
Now personally, I am thrilled that I am able to make this move to a new and exciting venture without leaving town. As Jill Cassidy says (and I keep quoting), Starbucks is right in the middle between 200 E Van Buren and the Cronkite Building. Let’s have coffee.
And, I want you to promise that I’ll never be the subject of a “Whatever Happened to…?” feature. You’ll know where I am.