This week's issue includes an article on PD Editor Debra Adams Simmons and the mixed reviews she's received in the newsroom since taking over for Susan Goldberg.
On Jan. 18, The Plain Dealer staff met their new managing editor: Thom Fladung, who had been editor of the St. Paul Pioneer-Press in Minnesota. The appointment surprised a newsroom that had expected to see its metro editor, Chris Quinn, sail into the managing editor's slot. According to newsroom scuttlebutt, the Quinn promotion was already ordained.
By appointing Fladung, however, Adams Simmons shows her muscle. She and Fladung worked together at the Detroit Free Press, and he preceded her as managing editor at the Akron Beacon Journal.
Fladung held that position from 2000 to 2002; Adams Simmons arrived in 2003.
Typically, a newspaper's managing editor is the most hands-on leader in terms of the paper's day-to-day operations.
When interviewing Adams Simmons, this reporter asked about rumors that the managing editor had already been chosen. "There are several candidates and that choice will be made by me, in due time," she said firmly.
Obviously, she meant what she said. — Afi-Odelia E. Scruggs