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Thursday, October 16, 2008

Post-Dispatch Loses Big Name Reporters Mannies and Lhotka, Three Others

Posted By on Thu, Oct 16, 2008 at 9:54 AM

More staff reductions this week at the local daily. Three veteran reporters, including the paper’s political writer, are taking an early retirement package. Two younger reporters are resigning to pursue other opportunities.


Taking early retirement:

Jo Mannies: Mannies, the paper’s chief political correspondent since 1990, primarily covers state politics from St. Louis. (In her 32 years at the Post she shattered a couple glass ceilings, becoming the second woman to cover sports and the first woman to cover City Hall.)

Bill Lhotka: Lhotka for nearly 35 years has covered cases at the St. Louis County Circuit Court. He is apparently one of the Post’s most productive writers, with 122 bylines so far this year, according to an internal memo, and was nearly killed on assignment in 1992 when a disgruntled husband on trial for divorce went on a shooting rampage in the courthouse. For a look at some the locally high-profile cases he's covered, check out these mugshots and other court photos when one searches Lhotka's name on Google.

Jerri Stroud: Stroud also spent more than 30 years at the Post, most recently writing the Pocketbook Perspective column in the business pages.

All three are leaving at the end of the month.

Reporter Angie Leventis, who covered southern Illinois, has resigned to move to Chicago. Business reporter Mary Jo Feldstein, who was writing a business-of-healthcare column, has resigned and will go to work for the St. Louis Area Business Health Coalition.

An internal memo says the newspaper will be reassigning some beats, with more changes to be announced in the coming weeks.

The moves clear the way for crime reporter Patrick M. O’Connell and Jeff. Co. bureau reporter Christine Byers to hang onto their posts. They were laid off on September 26.

Read other P-D-related blog items in Post-Dispatches.

- Kristen Hinman

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