News Media

New Skipper Takes The Helm

It is not only politics that makes strange bedfellows.

Newspapering makes strange “bedpersons” in the case of the local daily in Boise where a 35-year-old “veteran” of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune has just been appointed as publisher.

Mi-Ai Parish takes the helm after Mike Petrak jumped ship over the weekend. If the McClatchey group can get news in the paper as fast as they switch publishers there is hope for the local daily which has had more publishers and owners in the past year than it did in the previous 10.

In an episode straight out of Garrison Keillor’s Prairie Home Companion, Boise has a couple of midwerst ladies at the top of the local publishing game who were once crosstown competitors in Minnesota’s Twin Cities. They have apparently followed the advice of Horace Greeley–“go west young lady. Go west.”

Vicki Gowler is Executive editor at the Statesman and only a few months ago she was competing head-to-head with her new young boss. Gowler was an editor at the St. Paul Pioneer-Press and Parish held a similar post at the Star-Tribune.

Gosh! Newspaper brass are joining their TV cousins as being the highest paid most attractive migrant workers in town. We give Parish a month before she gets courted by Dr. Bob at BSU and invited to join hospital, charity group boards, the Airid Club, etc.

Insiders at the local paper are encouraged that Parish has a background in news. She has not worked in advertising, circulation, or finance. All we want is decent news coverage anyway, so who cares?

Comments & Discussion

Comments are closed for this post.

  1. I hope Mi-Ai hasn’t unpacked her bags. Perhaps the Statesman should include a nice room at the Rodeway Inn – just across the street – as part of the compensation package for publishers. (It can be difficult to get good help when everybody knows up-front that it’s just a temporary job.)

  2. Such a disappointment this has been.
    Paper only good for potty training puppy!

  3. The daily rag cares so little about local stuff anyway why should we care who they import to run it?

    I spend far less time with the rag than I ever have and it is really nothing more than a ton of ads I don’t read and “paragraph” newsclips from other papers.

    You get more local news out of the Kuna Melba newpaper.

  4. Ohhhh if only Brandi would have gotten elected none of this would have happen….

  5. “Mi-Ai Parish takes the helm after Mike Petrak jumped ship over the weekend”

    From what I understand, Mike was pushed overboard. He didn’t jump. He appears to have been popular among the rank and file, but he seemed unable to raise the quality of journalism during his tenure.

    Maybe this is a good thing.

  6. What is a news paper??

  7. Two years, tops.

    Newsroom not seeing this as positive.

    Gowler sticking around? don’t bet on it.

    And how did ktvb’s website break the news before the paper did? Seems a bit… pathetic.

  8. Could someone tell me what happened to any mention of what appeared to be a major bike race on Hill Road Sunday? I could find no mention of it in the Saturday, Sunday or Monday Statesman. Even for those of us who don’t ride bikes, it would be nice to know what is going on. Isn’t that the kind of thing a local newspaper would cover? Very odd in my opinion.

  9. And I thought that the former Statesman was bad….I honestly thought it could not be worse. I was wrong. The current rag is not worth bothering with. (making Mr. Yuk face).

  10. Mi-Ai’s husband is a Pulitzer prize winning reporter. Will he be coming to the Statesman also? Or will they have a long distance marriage? If the latter, doesn’t bode well for Mi-Ai staying long term .

  11. Boise is just a stop-over for any publisher. They are just passing through. When you are a transient you don’t care about the city (or the locals) regardless of if you are a publisher or a home-less person. I was not aware that the Statesman had a NEWS room – from what we see in the paper it should be called a “story re-print center” as most items are written elsewhere.

    It is amazing that the paper as sooo many editors and so little news. Just shows they do more editing than reporting.

  12. Mike has it right!! Although the City officials think Boise is big enough to compete with Disneyland and other tourist towns, reality is that it doesn’t have the resources to do so. It can’t even support direct flights to most other big cities. Hard as it tries the Statesman can’t bring in the revenue that most large corporations want. And news is much newer and faster to get off the net or tv. All we really need is a local shopping news . Sad because they seemed have more honest reporting of late!!

  13. As a 35-year old, I have to say that this is just awful news! It used to be the case that people would say, “Oh, you’re still only 35– you have plenty of time to make your career and amass your fortune, you’re still young, after all!” But now it’s just going to be, “You’re 35– why aren’t you at the top of a successful career, in a highly-paid position of power and influence, ruling over a staff many of which are your parents’ age? What is the matter with you?” Mi-Ai is that student you hated in school because she always aced the tests and blew the curve. Well, she’s still at it– only now it’s the Life Curve she’s ruined! Thanks a lot, Mi-Ai! This town used to be a safe haven for under and mid-achievers! I was able to keep up the pretense of having achieved an acceptable level of adulthood until you came along!

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