LA Observed Notes: Pulitzers, job moves and much more

david-farenthold-cspan.jpgDavid Fahrenthold in grab from CSPAN.

My occasional roundup on media, politics and place from our sources and the media. For more join 24,310 followers @LAObserved on Twitter.

Pulitzer for Fahrenthold: Washington Post reporter David Fahrenthold was recognized Monday for his excellent year-plus of reporting on the Trump campaign with the Pulitzer Prize in national reporting. The prize cites his stories "casting doubt on Donald Trump’s assertions of generosity toward charities." The New York Times won three 2017 Pulitzers, the staff for coverage of Vladimir Putin's power flexing, C.J. Chivers for feature writing and Daniel Berehulak for breaking news photography. Wall Street Journal columnist Peggy Noonan won in the commentary category. The staff of the East Bay Times in Oakland won the breaking news category for "relentless coverage of the Ghost Ship fire, which killed 36 people at a warehouse party, and for reporting after the tragedy that exposed the city’s failure to take actions that might have prevented it." LA Times photographer Katie Falkenberg was a finalist in feature photography for her Zika images from Brazil. BuzzFeed News was cited for the first time, placing investigative reporter Chris Hamby as a finalist for international reporting. All winners and finalists.

Eric Lichtblau to CNN: The New York Times justice department reporter is leaving after 16 years to be Washington editor of the new CNN investigations team. At CNN he will reunite with his former Los Angeles Times colleagues, Matt Lait and Scott Glover, also recent jumpers to the TV-web side. At the NYT Lichtblau won a Pulitzer with another ex-LAT reporter, James RIsen, for stories on the secret N.S.A. eavesdropping program approved by President George W. Bush.
Also heading to CNN: Saba Hamedy of Mashable, another former LA Times reporter, will be a breaking news reporter for CNN Politics.
And: A Washington Post profile of CNN Money's Brian Stelter, "training for this moment his entire life."

maggie-haberman-cnngrab.jpgTrump's go-to NYT reporter: When Donald Trump wants to get a story in the failing New York Times, he goes again and again to Maggie Haberman. The White House correspondent covered Trump for the New York tabloids and won't take any guff from him. She even turned down the scoop about his run for president. Dylan Byers, CNN Money's media reporter in LA, profiles the Haberman-Trump relationship.

In the Troncosphere: Tronc chief Michael Ferro and his one-time ally, LA billionaire Patrick Soon-Shiong, are now clearly locked in a battle for control in which the ultimate prize (for Dr. Soon-Shiong) is ownership of the Los Angeles Times. They are fighting at the lawyer and SEC-filing level over whether the Times is even available to buy, but PS-S says Ferro himself raised the subject in December. Meanwhile, Politico deep-dives into questions about the funding and organization of Soon-Shiong's cancer-fighting empire. Some links:
How Washington’s favorite cancer fighter helps himself Politico
Tronc's Latest Fusillade Targeting Soon-Shiong Gets to Core Question Ken Doctor/The Street
Tronc to billionaire Soon-Shiong: 'L.A. Times is not for sale' LAT

Looking back: Frank Sotomayor, a longtime editor at the Los Angeles Times who was an editor on the paper's Pulitzer-winning 1983 series on the Latino community in Southern California, dissects the project in a long web piece. Al Martinez, the late LA Observed columnist, was a member of the 16-person team. Others included current LAT reporter Louis Sahagun and editor Nancy Rivera Brooks, and longtime New York Times photographer Monica Almeida. Link and team photo

Media divide: The mainstream and conservative media are living in different worlds. So are those who read them, say reporters Matt Pearce and Michael Finnegan at the LA Times. On the opinion side, the Times explained why the paper produced what became a six-part series of editorials about Donald Trump.

Why now?... the answer is simple. Even though we’re only 11 weeks into the Trump presidency, there is good reason to believe that rather than grow into the job, he’ll remain the man he was on the campaign trail — impulsive, untruthful, narcissistic, ignorant of the limits on presidential power and woefully unprepared to wield it. Rather than wait until the public grew inured to the lies, the undermining of democratic institutions, the demagoguery and bluster, we decided to lay out our concerns at length and in detail.

octaviabutler-perret-huntington.jpgSci-fi at the Huntington: An exhibition based on the papers of the late Pasadena science fiction author Octavia E. Butler has opened at the Huntington Library. “She was a pioneer, a master storyteller who brought her voice—the voice of a woman of color—to science fiction,” says assistant curator Natalie Russell. Octavia E. Butler: Telling My Stories runs until August 8.

bob-miller-nhl-com.jpgBob Miller appreciation The longtime Kings broadcaster called his final games over the weekend and got an emotional sendoff at Staples Center, including a video tribute from Vin Scully. Here is Helene Elliott's piece in the LAT. On Monday, Miller visited with Larry Mantle on KPCC Airtalk. Later on Monday, the Kings fired general manager Dean Lombardi and coach Darryl Sutter after missing the playoffs again. Former stars Luc Robitaille and Rob Blake were named president and general manager, respectively.

Monday on KCRW: The LA Observed segment at 4:44 p.m. discussed recent LA Times stories disclosing a spike in payouts to settle claims against the Sheriff's department and a drop in prosecutions by the DA's public corruption unit.


Jimmy Kimmel's emotional remembrances of Don Rickles, the comedian and actor who died last week at age 90.

Media notes

mitra-kalita-cnn-640.jpgFormer co-managing editor S. Mitra Kalita says she made some lasting changes in her short time at the LA Times and especially likes that she hired a reporter to cover the (short-lived) Black Twitter beat...
The symbiosis between CNN and Donald Trump in the NYT Magazine. Also in the issue, a First Words column by Carina Chocano... KFI talk radio host Wendy Walsh formally complained to Fox that she was sexually harassed by Bill O’Reilly and denied an opportunity to become a contributor to Fox News because she rebuffed O’Reilly’s sexual advances. LAT... Tech journalist Walt Mossberg announced he will retire in June... Intersections South LA is soliciting memories of the 1992 riots... The OC Register and the Riverside Press-Enterprise introduced new websites on Monday... Carlos Garcia de Alba, Mexico's consul general in Los Angeles, was this week's guest on ABC 7's Eyewitness Newsmakers.... Bill Christine, the author and former LA Times horse racing writer, had a letter in the NYT regarding the cq... Former KPCC host and producer Linda Othenin-Girard is president of the Oaks Homeowners Association that is fighting the city's decision to close the Hollyridge Trailhead in Beachwood Canyon, in a bid to control Hollywood Sign traffic. Meanwhile, Daily Bulletin columnist David Allen came in town to climb Mt. Lee and get the rear view of the Hollywood sign... Herbert Hain, the retired bridge editor at the LA Times who also started the You Can Help column, died at age 95. LAT.

shining-city-cover.jpgBook notes: In Shining City, the new debut political thriller by Washington journalist Tom Rosenstiel, the character Henry Weingarten is a Berkeley Law graduate who covered labor and legal affairs for the Los Angeles Times for 20 years and now teaches law and journalism at UC Irvine. That's almost a dead ringer for the capsule bio of Henry Weinstein, Rosenstiel's real-life former colleague at the LA Times... Joan Didion's "South and West" is atop the nonfiction bestseller list for SoCal independent bookstores. "Lincoln in the Bardo" by George Saunders is the fiction bestseller. Lists... Former DWP head H. David Nahai is the co-author of a new guide to Commercial Real Estate Purchase and Sale Transactions in California.

And: LA Observed contributors with op-ed pieces in the Sacramento Bee's California Forum pages: Joel Bellman on free speech and Bill O'Reilly, Molly Selvin on concerns about women’s health as lawmakers curb legal access to abortion.

Politics notes

Antonio Villaraigosa, trailing in the early polls for the 2018 governor's race, is betting on Latino primary voters brought out by Trump, says Politico's California Playbook... The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is moving staffers to Orange County in hopes of flipping House seats in 2018, the LAT says... Maria Elena Durazo, the former LA county labor leader who is vice chair of the Democratic National Committee, told La Opinion she will run for the state senate seat of Kevin de Leon when the Pro Tem is termed out next year... Councilman Jose Huizar endorsed Jimmy Gomez in the 34th congressional district runoff, between Gomez and Robert Lee Ahn... Councilman Mitch O'Farrell [fixed: not Englander] endorsed challenger Joe Bray-Ali over incumbent councilman Gil Cedillo in the 1st district runoff... City Council candidate Karo Torossian's campaign is sending a mailer that photoshops the head of runoff rival Monica Rodriguez on another person's body. Low blow... Celeste Fremon reports at Witness LA that LA County Probation spends $400K a year on a youth diversion program that serves no kids... Mayor Eric Garcetti's office says he is out of the state on vacation until Sunday.


• The Location Managers Guild International handed out its awards, feting "La La Land" and "Hidden Figures" for outstanding locations in film. Winners

• Rick Caruso brags that rooms at his resort finally being built on the site of the affordable Miramar by the Sea beach hotel in Montecito will be "the most expensive hotel on the California coast.” Yeah well, it still will have freight trains and Amtraks passing through it and the busy 101 freeway right beside it. WSJ

• The former Hal's Bar on Abbot Kinney in Venice is turning into an Adidas store.

• The shuttered Proud Bird on Aviation Boulevard near LAX will reopen in May as something very different.

Selected tweets

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