Managing editor to leave Sun

September 16, 2008|By Hanah Cho | Hanah Cho,

Robert Blau, The Baltimore Sun's managing editor, the No. 2 position in the newsroom, announced yesterday he is leaving the paper Friday.

Blau, 49, said the decision was personal and one that he had been considering for the past several months.

"It just seems like a good time and good opportunity to take a step back and take stock," Blau said. "The fact of the matter is, I couldn't have liked a newspaper more than this one despite some of the challenges we all face. It has an enormously talented staff and a very engaged readership. From the first minute, it was a great fit."

Blau, who lives in Roland Park, said he has no immediate plans except to spend some time with his wife and two children.

"I will explore a variety of professional options, some of which have journalism at its heart and others that don't," he said.

Blau's departure comes amid changes at The Baltimore Sun and newspapers nationwide. The Baltimore Sun Media Group, which publishes The Baltimore Sun and community newspapers, eliminated about 100 jobs across the company in July to further cut costs in an industry grappling with eroding advertising revenue and circulation.

The Baltimore Sun also launched a redesign of its pages last month. Blau said he had planned to leave after the newsroom reorganization and redesign.

Blau, who began his journalism career at the Chicago Tribune as a movie reviewer, was responsible for much of the daily operations of the newsroom during his nearly four-year tenure.

"He's a superb journalist who is passionate about our mission, and a newsroom leader who has inspired legions of you in the pursuit of excellent storytelling and aggressive reporting," Editor Timothy A. Franklin said in a memo to the newsroom yesterday. "Through it all, he's also been a great colleague whose quick wit and self-deprecating humor have lightened the darkest of moments."

With Blau's departure, deputy managing editors Marcia Myers and Paul Moore will report to Franklin.

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