Chicago Newspaper Guild protests Sun-Times chief’s Columbus Day honor

Sun-Times Media chief Michael Ferro (right) was the grand marshal of today’s Columbus Day Parade in Chicago,ferro to the dismay of the Chicago Newspaper Guild. “We don’t believe he was worthy of this honored position at this great event,” says the Guild’s executive director. I’ve invited the Sun-Times to respond.

* Sun-Times: Critics fail to taint Columbus’ proud legacy (

From the union’s release:

Press release
Poor Parade Grand Marshal Choice
CHICAGO– What does Christopher Columbus have in common with the man who said he wanted to eliminate all the photographers from the first day he took over the company that owns Chicago Sun-Times?

Both were featured in a parade today, Oct. 14. The Joint Civic Committee of Italian Americans selected Michael Ferro, Jr. as Columbus Day Parade’s grand marshal./CONTINUES

“We don’t believe he was worthy of this honored position at this great event,” said Chicago Newspaper Guild Executive Director Craig Rosenbaum.

Guild members work for Sun-Times Media, including many of the photographers who made media history after they were fired en masse May 30. Ferro is the chairman of Wrapports, the company that owns Sun-Times Media.

Ferro told Chicago Magazine that the photographers worked for Chicago Sun-Times and its other 38 newspapers one and a half years too long, according to the article in Chicago Magazine article, which is entitled “Michael Ferro isn’t worried.” According to the article, Ferro also admitted that he didn’t know anything about running a newspaper when he took over Sun-Times Media.

What does he know about Columbus Day Parade and its significance to the Chicago area? His own media company no longer has photojournalists on staff to document the parade he is leading. From Chicago Newspaper Guild’s view, Ferro has crippled his company’s ability to cover the news in a meaningful way when the photographers were fired and replaced with reporters and camera phones.