Sacramento coverage takes another hit

The Roundup picks up that reporter Jordan Rau is leaving the L.A. Times Sacramento bureau, apparently not as part of today's layoffs. Presuming that Rau won't be replaced, the Sacto bureau — which already lost Dan Morain and Virginia Ellis recently — will be at its lowest point for reporter staffing in decades. The bureau is also smarting from the loss of longtime office administrator Patti Williams. A Times survivor writes:

The Sacramento Bureau is already hurting with the loss of decades upon decades of institutional knowledge because of the departures of Virginia Ellis, Nancy Vogel, Dan Morain, Jenifer Warren and now Jordan Rau. But the loss of Patti Williams represents something less public but every bit as profoundly deep. In her role as office manager, Patti of course made life so much easier. But she will be missed most for the intangibles she brought to our busy little world. She was the heart and soul of our operation, offering a warm smile, a hug when needed, an ear for the distressed or ill-tempered. Her departure effects the Times' daily product as much as those whose names appear atop stories.

Other confirmed departures from the Times today include photographer Lori Shepler and photo editor Tracy Silveria, health writer Mary Engel, copy editor Karen Chadjerian and video journalist John Vande Wege. Shepler emails, "It's official. I got laid off so you can post it on your site. Life goes on and i'm looking forward to new opportunities and LESS stress!!!" Their farewell emails to the newsroom are after the jump.

Add to the list: Deputy Arts Editor Craig Fisher, who previously edited on the foreign desk. He confirmed that he was laid off, also reported by Laura Stegman.

Lori Shepler, photographer:

Hi everyone, Well I will keep it short and sweet. After an amazing 25 yr career at the this wonderful paper it is time for me to start a new chapter in my book. I couldn't have asked for a more rewarding and fulfilling time with so many wonderfully talented and special people. You all are such amazing group of journalists but most importantly, great human beings and friends. Thanks for all the unforgettable memories and I wish everyone the best,


Mary Engel, staff writer in Health and former editorial writer:

How grand it has been to tell stories for a living, to drop into people's worlds and to describe them with passion and compassion—to have had for so many years a job that allowed me, as the late, great Molly Ivins once said, to do good and have fun.

Don't let the other junk cause you to forget that that's what you do and what you have.

I'm going to be traveling through New Zealand for the next month in a vintage VW camper van, hoping that it will jolt loose an epiphany about what's next.

Tracy Silveria, photo editor:

i was chopped! got to the last round and found a pink slip in the basket.

i have always found great pride in being a journalist, seeing life through a photographer’s lens, in seeking to tell stories visually, and in advocating for photographers. thanks to the business dept, a great bunch of writers, for teaching me abt cpi, dead cat bounces, and lots of other economic stuff that made my head hurt! thanks too to my ole pals in OC, it was great back then...

American journalism will survive, maybe we will deliver our work differently, but as long as we strive to tell the truth, we will continue to make a difference in our society and be a vital component of democracy, because even though the greedy bean counters have tried to crush our spirit, that is what journalists do.

Ten years at the Times, 24 years in the industry, lots of memories. Thanks to those who are a part of the positive ones, you will be missed.

John Vande Wege, video journalist

Subject: There's no -30- for video

And Bob Carey said it the best when he left. It's always been about the adventures--the people you would have never met and the places you would have never visited--that this job has afforded me. To the amazing writers that allowed me to reinterpret their words into video, thank you. To the amazing photojournalists who willingly gave me their images and sound so I could tell a story, thank you.

This place has always been equal parts frustration and delight. Luckily, all the maddening aspects will fade away and I'll cling to the
happy memories of my 11 years here. Good luck to all.

Karen Chaderjian, Sports copy editor:

I've worked in and outside this paper since January of 1985, and I'm still learning from you all.

To all the folks in sports, a special thank you. As much as everyone knows the deadlines you face, few understand the seamless way the desk, writers and designers work together to pull that off.

Best to you,


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