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ProJo yet to report on its own layoffs

While the Providence Journal routinely reports on layoffs at other companies, it has yet to report on its own forthcoming axing of 30 news employees, which is due to take effect October 10.

These economic layoffs are thought to be the first in the paper's lengthy history. As a result, the ProJo's "In Her Shoes" women's initiative is said to be on hold, and there is talk -- unconfirmed at this point -- that the paper may close its remaining bureaus in Rhode Island.

Three full-time reporters are being let go:

-- Cranston reporter David Scharfenberg (who happens to be the son of the late Kirk Scharfenberg, a much-respected editor at the Boston Globe).

-- Brandie Jefferson, who is currently detailed to

-- East Bay reporter Meaghan Wims (who happens to have once been an intern here at the Phoenix).

The ProJo was going to cut another reporter, but her job was saved when bigfoot baseball writer Sean McAdam decided to decamp for the Boston Herald.

At least two management employees are losing their jobs: section editors Karen Maguire of the North edition and Jean Plunkett of the West Bay.

Twenty-five part-time news employees are also being laid off, including such individuals as Linda Henderson, the ProJo's librarian, and Laura Meade Kirk, who has been with the Journal for more than 20 years.

I placed calls to each of the people mentioned in this post who are being laid off; they either declined comment or didn't return a telephone message.

  • Tom said:

    If indeed Meaghan Wims is one of those to be let go, then it is a sad day for the East Bay.

    Like many Newporters, I first became familiar with Ms. Wims' byline in the Newport Daily News. Her departure from that paper has left an undeniable void, and her departure from the Projo will likely follow suit.

    From Seekonk to Middletown, Ms. Wims has proven herself to be a consummate professional with a solid grasp of the issues and an attuned ear to the ground.

    But more than that, she has been a steadfast and trusted reporter of the news. When I see her byline, I know that I'm going to get an accurate take on the day's events.  And for a paper struggling to stay atop the news, hers will be one that is sorely missed.

    October 1, 2008 11:20 AM
  • Speaking of the Projo | Providence Daily Dose said:

    Pingback from  Speaking of the Projo | Providence Daily Dose

    October 6, 2008 8:49
  • Speaking of the Projo said:

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    October 8, 2008 3:04

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