Connecticut Paper Loses Two Top Editors to Buyouts

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By: Joe Strupp

The Day in New London, Conn. will lose its executive editor and editorial page editor, along with 16 other employees, who took buyouts this week, the paper reported Tuesday.

The Day, which is among a handful of daily papers that operate essentially as non-profits, disclosed that Executive Editor Lance C. Johnson and Editorial Page Editor Morgan McGinley were among 18 employees who took the buyout package offered in January. The paper reported that those included workers in the advertising, circulation, production and administrative departments.

“The flood of journalism awards that come to The Day every year are testimony to the quality of leadership provided by these two outstanding newspapermen,” Gary Farrugia, editor and publisher, said in Tuesday’s paper. “Lance and Morgan have distinguished both themselves and this newspaper through decades of overseeing The Day’s newsroom and its Opinion pages.”

In addition to Johnson and McGinley, Farrugia said that longtime Deputy Editorial Page Editor Greg Stone would retire. Other veteran writers and editors in the newsroom taking early retirement include Deputy Managing Editor Kyn Tolson, columnist Steven Slosberg and staff writer and columnist Bethe Dufresne.

Paul Choiniere, a former Norwich bureau chief and a staff writer currently covering development issues, was promoted to succeed McGinley as editorial page editor. Ann Baldelli, a longtime Day staff writer and editor, was promoted to associate editor of the editorial page.

The buyouts were offered to employees 50 years of age or older with at least 20 years of service at the paper. A total of 32 employees were eligible out of about 400 full- and part-time employees.

The offer was part of an overall series of cost-cutting moves by The Day, the paper reported. The company had announced in January that it would establish a new interactive media division with community-based Web sites, events-related databases and community forums.

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