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Arts editor Scott Heller leaving Globe

Globe arts editor and Phoenix alum Scott Heller will be leaving the paper for the New York Times at the end of this month. The memo sent last week by Globe editor Marty Baron and features editor Doug Most follows; Baron tells me they'll be naming Heller's replacement "in the next few weeks."

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To all:

We are sad to report that we will be losing one of our most creative
editors. Once again, the New York Times is dipping into our deep pool of
talent.

Scott Heller will be leaving us at the end of February to join the New York
Times as assistant arts editor, overseeing theater and books.

It's no wonder that the Times has turned to someone like Scott. As our Arts
Editor for nine years, he has been relentless in assuring that the Globe is
a must-read, drawing upon the full power of our staff's sophisticated
knowledge, its writing elegance, and its astonishing capacity for
imaginative work. Scott has never settled for "good enough." When he joined
the Globe, he set the bar high. Restless and demanding by nature, he is
driven to constantly set the bar higher.

Scott's accomplishents at the Globe are vast and impressive. He leaves
behind a staff of critics and arts reporters who are second to none in this
country. He hired many  into our newsroom. He helped many others flourish.
This was a period when arts criticism at the Globe garnered a Pulitzer one
year, and in another year was recognized as a Pulitzer finalist.

Scott has been a fierce advocate for expanded coverage of the arts. Early
in his tenure, we expanded Arts coverage into two sections on Sunday --
Arts and Movies -- with Scott guiding that major initiative in every
detail. At Scott's insistence, the Globe showed special vigor over the
years in covering cultural institutions just like other powerful entities
in town. There is a news agenda in the world of culture, and almost always
the Globe was instrumental in setting it.

We were fortunate to have Scott's leadership coincide with a decade of
breathtaking new activity on the local arts scene. Matching the ambition of
the region's major cultural institutions was a journalistic ambition here
at the Globe. That ambition ensured that our readers would not only know
what to see and what to skip but would also understand the larger meaning
behind the great currents in music, art, theater, dance, movies, and
television. And when it came to big events, the Globe excelled: The special
section Scott's team produced on the opening of the Institute of
Contemporary Art stands as a model for how to marry coverage in print and
online.

In taking a position in New York, Scott will be moving closer to his
family, a goal of his for some time. We'll find a date to give him a proper
newsroom sendoff. Meantime, we can take pride in both Scott's new
assignment and in the knowledge that he has left our arts coverage strong
and vibrant.

Marty Baron and Doug Most

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