Behind the Scene
by Randy Limbird
Editor & Publisher, El Paso Scene
I first met Bob Moore back in 1986, when we were both interviewing for job vacancies at the El Paso Times. When I read the other day about his resignation as editor of the Times, it brought back many memories.
Back then, the El Paso Times was the most dysfunctional workplace I ever encountered. The person who held the title of editor was no longer in charge; her actual job was editorial page editor. A husband and wife served as co-managing editors, but those titles didn’t mean much. The wife ran the operation, while husband occasionally tried to act like a boss but was pretty ineffective. The city editor seemed perpetually distracted and prone to assigning oddball stories.
There were two openings for assistant city editor. One would oversee the New Mexico staff (the former jobholder quit to join a monastery — really). The other opening was for a night-shift editor.
I got the New Mexico job. Bob Moore got the night desk. As the night editor, he had to handle the late-breaking news and last-minute decisions. He had an old-fashioned hard-news sensibility and always kept his emotions in check, providing a stable presence no matter the chaos around him. Within the first year, most of the upper management problems were fixed and for several years, the Times got better and better. Bob had a lot to do with that.
I left the Times in 1993 and started the El Paso Scene. Bob rose to managing editor at the Times, then later worked as executive editor of the Fort Collins newspaper for several years before returning to the El Paso Times as the top editor. He increasingly took on the role of a community leader along the way.
Unfortunately, Bob’s growing career was stymied by shrinking newspaper resources. Daily newspapers all over have suffered drastic declines in readership and advertising, and as a result have had to decimate their newsroom staffs. The El Paso Times circulation has dropped by about half since Bob and I came here 31 years ago, and the newsroom today is a shadow of what it was.
Apparently the corporate powers-that-be ordered Bob to make one more round of cuts and he decided enough was enough. A front page story announced Bob’s resignation effective Oct. 5.
My hope is that Bob’s passion for journalism hasn’t been extinguished by the economic woes of the newspaper industry, and that he will find some opportunity to put it to continuing use in El Paso.
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We’ve displayed numerous paintings and photographs of Mount Cristo Rey on our cover over the years, but this is the first one that depicts the annual fall pilgrimage. This year’s pilrimage will be Sunday, Oct. 29.
I noticed Mark Yerrington’s “Pilgrims Mt. Cristo Rey” at a past Celebration of Our Mountains art exhibit at Ardovino’s Desert Crossing. We finally connected with each other and I asked if we could feature his works on the cover. For information about Mark, contact him at 309-7237 or email email@example.com.
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El Paso Scene’s own Hike Up Cristo Rey is also coming up this month. Join us at 8 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 14, for our 16th annual “Hike Through Time.” We’ll talk about some history and geography as we walk the 2.5 miles up to the monument. Details are on Page 5. A small donation ($3 adults, $1 children) is requested to benefit the Mt. Cristo Rey Restoration Committee.
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