If ever a state needed two newspapers, it is Rhode Island. Three or four would be better. For decades Providence had one of the premiere newspapers in the country, but regional offices have all been closed and the staff has been gutted — a sadly familiar story these days. In addition to the diminishing coverage, a hard right turn of the editorial board alienated many subscribers and circulation plummeted. Enter the Boston Globe who saw an opportunity. A few months ago they made their move* and set about poaching a few of our best journalists. According to NiemanLab:
Three Providence journalists with more than four decades’ combined experience reporting on Little Rhody news are now officially a remote part of the Globe’s newsroom, writing for residents of the state and not just Bostonians.
. . . The reporters are Amanda Milkovits, the Providence Journal’s longtime crime and safety reporter; Ed Fitzpatrick, a recent university spokesperson and former Providence Journal columnist (he and Milkovits started on the same day both at the Journal and now at the Globe); and Dan McGowan from WPRI 12, who spearheads a nearly 7,000-member Facebook group on Rhode Island politics and now the daily Rhode Map newsletter.
Milkovits (full disclosure: she is a personal friend) already made significant hay in July exposing the decades of sexual abuse perpetrated by a respected Bristol town father. And Dan McGowan is keeping tabs on troubles in Fane Tower land. So the Globe means business, to which I say welcome!
Globe editor Brian McGrory noted:
For the better part of forever, we weren’t focused on Rhode Island because the Journal was so strong. It didn’t leave a lot of room for us,” McGrory said. Now…well, things are different.
*The Globe set themselves up in the CIC offices in the new Wexford Building on Dyer Street.