The rumors were true that new editor Russ Stanton made getting rid of John Montorio his first big move. Montorio, the managing editor for features, told his editors this morning and just sent this email:
From: Montorio, John
Sent: Monday, February 18, 2008 12:16 PM
These last seven years have been among the most rewarding of my life. Together, we have renewed and reshaped The Times' Features report into one worthy of a great newspaper and its readers. Today, page for page, our entertainment, cultural and life-style journalism stands up to that at any American newspaper. I'd hoped we'd be working together to extend that excellence into this new era. However, Russ has decided to take the Features department in a different direction, with a new leader, and I will officially leave The Times at the end of this month. I wish it were possible to personally thank each and every one of you individually, because our collective success truly is the sum of your individual contributions. You are as talented and devoted a staff as exists anywhere and our collaboration will remain one of my life's great pleasures. I don't know who your next editor will be. I do know that if they take half the pride in their association with you that I have, they will be fortunate beyond measure.
Montorio came from the New York Times in the early months of the John Carroll era, and brought in a team of editors loyal to him. But he won't be missed by a great many on the features floor who found him arrogant and aloof.