Geez, it's been nothing but memos today. One more: the LAT Business section shuffles editors and brings back Anne Reifenberg, who had been running West magazine since the exit of editor Rick Wartzman. New Business Editor Davan Maharaj makes his LA Observed memo-authoring debut below. The term "suee" is Times talk, I believe, for the pot-luck lunch and snack feeds in the Business section of the newsroom.
Sent: Friday, March 09, 2007 3:34 PM
Subject: Staff Changes Business News -- Julie Makinen, John Corrigan, Anne Reifenberg, Chris Gaither
To: The Staff
From: Davan Maharj, Business Editor
The Business section is filling some long-standing vacancies as we seek to launch new features and improve our presence on the Web. Please welcome these folks as they begin their feeding at the Business suee trough:
-- JULIE MAKINEN, Deputy Business Editor When Julie Makinen entered the human biology program at Stanford University, she planned to pursue a career in medicine. Julie graduated four years later. But unable to stomach the sight of blood, she returned to her original calling and the newspaper career she had started as a delivery girl for the Cleveland Plain Dealer.
Julie came to The Times' Foreign section in 2001 from the Washington Post, where she worked as a copy editor, reporter and editor in the metro and foreign sections. At The Times, she was a member of the Foreign copy desk before becoming an assistant foreign editor. Julie helped oversee Asia coverage and edited Barbara Demick's 2005 project on the North Korean city of Chongjin, which won awards from the Asia Society and the Overseas Press Club.
In 2004, she took a leave from the paper to work with the Institute for War and Peace Reporting, training journalists in Afghanistan. Since January, 2006, Julie has been deputy weekend editor. Julie, who expects to join the Business staff shortly, succeeds Davan Maharaj.
She holds a bachelor's degree in human biology from Stanford and a master's in East Asian studies/Japanese from UCLA. Julie has a yellow Labrador, Larry, and two cats. Her culinary skills also are important to her new colleagues in Business. Among her prized possessions is one very overused Cuisinart ice cream maker. Coming soon to the Biz suee table: her Mexican chocolate ice cream.
-- JOHN CORRIGAN, Senior Editor, News
John Corrigan -- an avid backpacker, licensed private pilot and lead guitarist for the band Blue Cube -- gets another title: senior editor, news.
John, the section's senior markets editor, came to Business in 2001. With a bachelor's degree in fine and communication arts from Loyola Marymount University, he had hoped to become a screenwriter and documentary filmmaker. Unable to crack the documentary business, John got hooked on reporting stories for the Daily Sundial, the student paper at Cal State Northridge, where he earned a second bachelor's degree.
Journalism won out, and John went on to work at publications including the Los Angeles Business Journal, the Los Angeles Daily News and the Orange County Register.
During his tenure in the Business section, John has piled up an impressive body of work: He was project editor for the 2003 series "The Wal-Mart Effect," which won the Pulitzer Prize for national reporting, and the 2006 series "Retirement at Risk." He has overseen coverage of several major stories, including the Enron scandal, the labor strife at West Coast ports, the California supermarket strike and abuses by mortgage lender Ameriquest.
With his new responsibilities, John will help launch the daily report and work to add to his list of achievements by pursuing signature projects.
-- ANNE REIFENBERG, Enterprise Editor
Anne Reifenberg, formerly executive editor of West magazine, returns to the Business section Monday as enterprise editor, a title that comes with a variety of duties, chief among them shepherding A1 stories and major projects and operating as an in-house writing coach. She also will work on the physical redesign of the section in its evolution as the print counterpart to the website.
Anne brings many years of experience to her new job. Her first newspaper, the Hosford Horseman in her hometown of Portland, Ore., was printed on a hand-cranked mimeograph machine; her job was to turn the handle. She worked for four dailies before coming to The Times, and all but one of them is still publishing.
Anne covered presidential campaigns before cellphones and wars before laptops. When she was an OPEC reporter, oil was $18 a barrel. She met George Bush, when he was the Undecider, and Mikhail Gorbachev when there was a Soviet Union.
She joined The Times in 2003 after nearly a decade at the Wall Street Journal. In a previous posting, at the Dallas Morning News, Anne was the lead writer on a series about violence against women that won the Pulitzer Prize for international reporting for 1993. Anne's position was created out of a vacancy that dates to last year.
Suee providers should know that she likes chocolate more than any other food item and she prefers to receive rather than to give.
-- CHRIS GAITHER, Technology Editor
Chris Gaither was sold on the power of the press after his story in Wesleyan University's student newspaper about a local officer who was threatening students led to the lawman's suspension.
Chris, who joined The Times as a staff writer in February 2004, succeeds Aaron Curtiss, who held the technology editor job for five years before moving to the paper's innovation team.
In his time on the tech beat, Chris covered the business of Internet media and advertising from the San Francisco Bureau. He chronicled the growing power of new media giants such as Yahoo, Google and Microsoft's MSN, and the interactive efforts of TV networks and other traditional media companies.
Chris joined The Times from the Boston Globe, where he covered Silicon Valley and California news as the paper's West Coast correspondent. He has covered technology for the New York Times and Wired.com and spent a summer covering sewage spills and murders as a Metro intern for the Miami Herald. He started in journalism covering city government and social service for the Meriden (Conn.) Record-Journal before earning a master's degree in journalism from UC Berkeley.
He lives in San Francisco, where he surfs not just online but in the water. He and his wife, Caitlin, have a Labrador-Bassett hound mix, Basil, who has his own social networking site; you can ask him for its URL.