Chicago Tribune closing DC bureau

Whether it be wholesale closure like the Rocky Mountain News or the piecemeal shutdowns of bureaus it isn’t hard to tell the news business is in real trouble. This can be seen as word comes that the Chicago Tribune is going to be closing its Washington DC bureau and farm the work out. This is according to an email received by Fishbowl DC (

Today we made the difficult decision to cease broadcast operations at our Washington News Bureau effective next month. The broadcast news staff was informed earlier today. As consumers find more and more places from which to get their national news, the need for the company to maintain its own dedicated broadcasting presence in Washington has diminished considerably. Going forward, we expect to rely on existing internal resources and our news-sharing arrangement with CNN to service our television stations when covering Washington-based news.

Cissy Baker, who ran the broadcast side of the bureau since its inception and has been instrumental in its success over the years, will be leaving the company. We thank her for her dedication and her innumerable contributions to the company.

Publishing operations at the bureau will continue as usual. Veteran journalist Kerry Luft has been promoted to bureau chief and will be moving to Washington from Chicago.

Many of you already know Kerry-he joined the Chicago Tribune full-time in 1986, after working there as an intern and part-time while in college. He has served in a variety of reporting and editing positions and most recently has been associate managing editor for foreign and national news. He also has served as national editor, foreign editor, sports editor for enterprise and deputy metropolitan editor for suburban and political coverage. From 1994 to 1996 he was a foreign correspondent based in Brazil.

I know you’ll give Kerry your full support in the weeks ahead.

And the march carries on.