Orange County Register adds staff while other papers downsize

The Las Vegas Review-Journal announced Thursday afternoon that it’s eliminated several newsroom management positions, including managing editor and city editor. Just as that news came down I received a memo that said the Orange County Register is adding 23 positions.

Here’s the memo that Register publisher Aaron Kushner sent after a recent all-hands meeting:

Dear Colleagues,

Thank you for taking the time to attend our associate Town Hall. [Freedom President] Eric [Spitz] and I are very excited about the future of the Register, and we hope you left the meeting with a clearer understanding of our priorities and the specific actions we are taking to create more value for our subscribers and our community.

As discussed, our executive team is actively evaluating every opportunity to increase the resources we can devote to adding value for our subscribers. Thank you for your patience as we consolidate IT under Mike Hunsche so we have a unified team, and as we realign our advertising operations under Mike Burns to similar effect. …

We already have 23 new positions approved for hiring in our Content group, in addition to a significantly expanded internship program. Ken Brusic is leading our recruiting efforts with our strong deputy editors and team leaders. We are the Orange County Register and are looking for talent with our level of skill, commitment and teamwork. If you have friends and colleagues who you believe can help us grow please share the opportunity with them.

We have a number of areas we have not yet finished evaluating for growth but among those already approved for hiring are the business section, investigative team, auto, restaurant and movie criticism, sports, copy editing, graphics, data reporting and Sacramento reporting.

Finally, we talked about some of the new content initiatives we have approved for launch including adding a weekly magazine in addition to our monthly Coast and creating a full daily business section to cover the Orange County community. I can’t wait to see them take form as vibrant parts of the Register.

Thank you again for the inspiring and engaging work you do every day. We look forward to growing the Orange County Register together!

–Best, Aaron