Five days ago [see previous posts here and here] The E.W. Scripps Co. announced that its publisher at the Ventura County Star, Tim Gallagher, would be stepping down to start a media consulting business. Then, this morning, Scripps announced that it has put The Albuquerque Tribune up for sale, and will close it if no buyer materializes.
Both the Star and The Trib are owned by Scripps. From January 1987 to December 1994, Gallagher was editor of The Tribune. Gallagher became editor of the Star at the start of 1995 and was named as its publisher in 2004.*
News of The Tribune sale announcement via CNN:
The E. W. Scripps Company is seeking a buyer for The Albuquerque Tribune, an afternoon newspaper that's published Monday through Saturday, and intends to close the newspaper if a qualified buyer is not found.
The Tribune has a daily paid circulation of about 11,000 copies compared with The [Albuquerque] Journal's paid circulation of 106,000 daily and 145,000 Sunday [The Trib and Journal are in a JOA that would be nullified in the event of a sale]. Paid circulation of the afternoon Tribune, which stood at 42,000 in 1988, has been in persistent decline for more than two decades.
Gallagher said in a phone conversation yesterday that his departure from the Star was a personal decision about where he wanted to take his life and career. He said he knew of no plans to sell the Star.
*DISCLOSURE: Gallagher hired yours truly twice, once at The Trib and again at the Star.