Layoffs continued at The Tennessean on Monday as two more newsroom employees were laid off and another gave notice.
Senior editor Deb Fisher, sports reporter John Glennon both lost their jobs. Additionally, Sumner County editor Mike Towle was laid off. Towle’s Gallatin News Examiner was named one of the best small papers in the state by the Tennessee Press Association last week and received top honors in investigative, lifestyles, features and design categories.
Calls to the paper were referred to Bob Faricy, The Tennessean’s vice president for market development, who confirmed the newsroom cuts as well as 10 more in advertising and three in marketing.
“As we’ve shared with our employees, today we made some personnel and other moves to align our resources to current local market conditions and toward our longer term strategic needs," according to a statement from Tennessean President and Publisher Laura Hollingsworth. "While some positions were eliminated, we also welcomed all impacted employees to pursue other positions we continue to recruit and hire for."
When asked about frozen positions or what this meant for the paper going forward, Faricy said that "the nature of the entire workforce is very fluid."
Like many media companies, Gannett has been under significant financial pressure. Just two weeks ago, the company posted second quarter earnings and revenue figures that were lower than a year ago.
Monday’s layoffs brought the newsroom layoff total to three after courts reporter Bobby Allyn’s job was eliminated last Thursday. Additionally, noted food writer Jennifer Justus and photographer Dipti Vaidya have given their notice. These departures come within months of a spate of other departures in the paper’s business and news departments. Towle is counted as a Gannett Tennessee employee.
Not included in this round of layoffs is Gannett’s Nashville design studio, which is responsible for the production of The Tennessean and other Gannett papers throughout the southeast. One source, who did not wish to be identified, said that the studio — which is on the corporate payroll — gave small raises to its staff this year, but has open positions in management and is being led by a director in Des Moines, Iowa.
Other Gannett properties in Middle Tennessee laid off staff last week as well. The Leaf-Chronicle in Clarksville lost three employees, while the Daily News Journal in Murfreesboro, which recently laid off six newsroom staffers in a recent restructuring, eliminated one job.
As of noon, the independent Gannett Blog had tallied 244 job cuts around the company, including 29 in Phoenix, 23 in Cincinnati and 19 in Indianapolis.