The latest SoCal reporter to join the Buzzfeed News team is Salvador Hernández. He had been a reporter at the Orange County Register for nine years, most recently on the crime beat. He's now a breaking news reporter in Buzzfeed's Los Angeles office on Beverly Boulevard. Buzzfeed also recently hired former LA Times reporter Adolfo Flores after last year adding LAT staffers Jessica Garrison and Ken Bensinger.
OC Weekly editor (and KCRW contributor, like me) Gustavo Arellano says this trend is good for Buzzfeed — "Latino coverage editor Adrian Carrasquillo is wooing an entire generation of wab talent away from the dailies" — but a bad sign for the Register. The struggling OC daily also recently lost editor Theresa Cisneros. Arellano analyzes:
[Hernandez's] great coverage will be missed. The loss of Cisneros, however, is far more telling of the Reg's institutional woes. Not only is Cisneros a native OCer, but her family's been in SanTana since before World War II. Not only had Cisneros been with the paper since 1999, it's the only journalism job she's ever had. Cisneros mentored dozens of reporters over the years, and moved up the ranks from a news assistant to her last position as "team leader," the weak-ass Register title for what should more accurately be described as associate editor, a position she had been promoted to in August.
And, still, she left, leaving on her own accord "to focus on my family and community," according to a Facebook post.
Cisneros was an important part of the Reg, not just for her abilities but also her respected status in OC's Latino community, as she consistently argued for more and better coverage in her paper's pages. Yet Register leadership always stymied her efforts, first by ending the popular OC Latino Link blog she and longtime editor Ron Gonzales used to edit, then by ending the Santa Ana Register's weekly edition, a paper that Cisneros enlivened with community columnists and great cultural coverage of the city.