Russ Parsons, columnist and former food editor at the LA Times, is among the many staffers taking generous buyout packages from the Tribune Company. The 26-year food writing veteran decided it was time to hang up the hat in light of continued changes in the print media world. In a Facebook post, Parsons writes:
I have had an extraordinarily wonderful 26-year run at the Times, in large part thanks to you all. ... But for everyone there comes a time when they should move on. I'm beyond excited to figure out what my next chapter will be.
We needed a huge staff because, typically, the Food section was 70 to 80 pages every week, and during the holiday season we would publish two sections a week and sometimes those would be hundred-page sections. [SCPR]
Parsons started his career as a sports and music writer before joining the Times as the deputy food editor under Ruth Reichl. During the section's halcyon days, advertising reached up to $1 million a week. Parsons, like many others who are taking buyouts, agreed to a full year's salary plus benefits. His last day at the publication is the day before Thanksgiving. Amy Scattergood rose to the position of food editor earlier this year after Parsons became a columnist.