Richmond Times-Dispatch names Brandon Dingess design editor

This week, the Times-Dispatch of Richmond, Va., has promoted designer Brandon Dingess.


Brandon tells us:

The new title is design editor and it was announced and effective this week.

A 2004 graduate of Marshall University, Brandon spent two years as editor of the student paper there, the Parthenon, before becoming a page designer and copy editor for the Herald Bulletin of Anderson, Ind. He moved to the Charleston (W.Va.) Daily Mail in 2005 and then to the Times-Dispatch in 2007.

Brandon was folded into Media General’s hub system in 2010 but then moved back to the Richmond paper after the company sold many of its papers last year.

Philip Maramba, managing editor of the Daily Mail tells us:

The Daily Mail was lucky enough to employ his services from 2005 to 2007 as a copy editor and designer before he headed to Virginia. I can’t say enough good things about his talent, news sense and creativity. I appreciated his eye enough to add “Red Brandon” to the DM color palette years ago.


He continues to be a valued resource and adviser to me even now. I’m glad to see his day come; Richmond done good.

Find Brandon’s portfolio here and his Twitter feed here.

Birthdays for Thursday, April 17

Here’s wishing the happiest of birthdays to four excellent visual journalists…


Jacqui Banaszynski is a professor of journalism at the University of Missouri. A 1974 graduate of Marquette University, Jacqui worked as a reporter for the Janesville (Wis.) Gazette, the Duluth (Minn.) News-Tribune, the Eugene (Ore.) Register-Guard and the Minneapolis Star-Tribune before becoming projects editor for the St. Paul Pioneer Press in 1984. She won a Pulitzer Prize for feature writing in 1988. In 1994, she became senior editor for enterprise at the Portland Oregonian and then spent eight years as an assistant managing editor for the Seattle Times. She moved to the University of Missouri in 2000, where she teaches writing, reporting and editing. Find her official bio here and her Twitter feed here.


David Farré is director of digital operations for, the web site for the Harrisburg, Pa., Patriot-News. A 1997 graduate of Rutgers, David spent eight years as online editor for the Columbia (Mo.) Daily Tribune and teaching electronic photojournalism as an adjunct at the University of Missouri. He moved to the Free Press of Burlington, Vt. in 2009 as a digital developer, was promoted to director of digital content in 2010 and started work in Harrisburg two years ago yesterday. Find his web site here and his Twitter feed here. David turns 40 today.


Chris Grimm is lead features designer for the Journal Star of Peoria, Ill. A 1996 graduate of Illinois State University in Bloomington-Normal, Chris spent a year as a sportswriter for the La Salle News-Tribune and then three as a sports copy editor for the Bloomington Pantagraph before moving to Peoria in 2005. In addition, he teaches design and copy editing at Bradley University, there in Peoria. Find his portfolio here and his Twitter feed here. Chris turns 41 today.


Jordan Overturf is digital coordinator for the Eagle of Bryan/College Station, Texas. A 2007 graduate of the University of Houston, Jordan served as a sports writer for the student paper there, the Daily Cougar, and also wrote for Avid Golfer and Golf Houston magazines. He joined the Temple (Texas) Daily Telegram in 2008 as lifestyles and entertainment editor and designer. He took time off for a mission trip to Zambia in 2012 and then moved to the Eagle last summer. Find his web site here and his Twitter feed here.

Jordan, David, Chris and Jacqui share a birthday with actors Jennifer Anne Garner, Patricia Rooney Mara, Shaun Mark “Sean” Bean, Olivia Osuna (better known as Olivia Hussey), Lela Rochon Staples and William Franklin Beedle Jr. (better known as William Holden); musicians Elizabeth Clark “Liz” Phair, Jan Hammer, Michael Sembello and Donald “Don” Kirshner; singer-turned-model-turned-housewife Victoria Caroline Adams Beckham (better known, perhaps, as Posh of the Spice Girls); wrassler Roderick George Toombs (better known as Rowdy Roddy Piper); sports greats Norman Julius “Boomer” Esiason (football), Kevin Porter (basketball) and Marquis Deon Grissom (baseball); novelist Thornton Niven Wilder; zillionaire John Pierpont Morgan and TV journalist Harry Reasoner.

In addition, today is Ellis Island Family History Day, Ford Mustang Day, High Five Day, Bat Appreciation Day, Blah! Blah! Blah! Day and National Haiku Poetry Day. Seriously.

Best wishes, all! Have a wonderful birthday!

Birth announcement: The Los Angeles Register

In case you haven’t heard the news: The owners of my paper, the Orange County Register, launched a new paper this morning in Los Angeles.

My colleague, Register graphics editor Jeff Goertzen, stayed to the end last night. He tells us:

If newspapers are a dying industry, someone forgot to tell Eric Spitz and Aaron Kushner, co-owners of Freedom Publications, Inc. Because last night, they just launched their fourth newspaper in Southern California.


And this one was huge…the Los Angeles Register, a four-section, 60-page daily that will take a spot in the kiosks right next to the Los Angeles Times.


Last night’s launch was a nail biter. At midnight, the Dodgers went into extra innings and the presses at the Orange County Register building were on hold until we could get a final score to post in the paper.


We were a small group of about 40 employees and invited guests, huddled around the control panel of the presses, checking our mobile devices for updates on the game.

At 12:15 the game ended and by 12:34 the presses began rolling out 30,000 copies of Los Angeles’ newest daily newspaper. ​


Posing with fresh copies last night: OC Register editor Rob Curley, LA Register editor Ron Sylvester and co-owner Eric Spitz.


One of the coolest things about today’s debut edition: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar wrote a column for our metro front about the quintessential movie about Los Angeles.


That, by the way, was my one little contribution to today’s effort: I cut the background out of the little photo of Kareem.

Plus, today is Kareem’s 67th birthday. How nice that our new paper shares a birthday with him.

Reaction today via Facebook and Twitter has been fabulous. My favorite: This one by John T. Garcia of the Ventura County Star:


Ha! Thanks much, John!

Today’s Focus page — which was previously a feature in the OC Register but has been exported to the Long Beach Register, the Riverside Press-Enterprise and, now, the LA Register — was created by our ace graphic artist Scott Brown:


The actual anniversary of that turret explosion is Saturday. But a) We don’t have a Focus page on Saturdays, and b) We wanted something with a local angle for today’s papers. And the battleship Iowa is now a floating museum in San Pedro, in Los Angeles County.

But tomorrow’s page will be one of mine. And it, too, will have a local angle.

  • Find the Los Angeles Register‘s web site here.
  • Find the Facebook page here.
  • Find the Twitter feed here.

A cover montage made of crowdsourced photos

A couple of weeks ago, James A. Molnar of the Toledo Free Press Star shared his annual Opening Day baseball covers.

Now, he shares his crowdsourced 419 Day cover. Click for a larger look:

041314 A17, 18-19 STAR.indd

The local area code in Toledo is 419, James tells us, so April 19 has now become a local holiday of sorts. He writes:

Toledo City Council officially recognized the celebratory day two years ago “to showcase Toledo, Ohio, foster civic pride, and to create an epicenter for an annual citywide celebration…”

When I was informed the story was going to be our Star cover, I wanted to do an area photo grid. We reached out to our Instagram followers and asked them to use #TFP419 and we would select our favorites to put on the cover.

The response was overwhelming. We had more than 140 photos to choose from 48 hours later.

Here’s the print version of the story…

041314 A17, 18-19 STAR.indd

…and here’s a closeup of the key to the contributions for the cover montage.


Go here to find the online version of the story.

A 2009 graduate of Marquette in Milwaukee, Wis., James served as a reporter, designer and then visual content editor for the student paper there, the Marquette Tribune.


He spent a couple of months as a designer and editor for the Daily of Chatauqua, N.Y. and then seven months as an apprentice optician at Eyeglass World in Toledo before catching on at the Free Press in 2010. He also covers movies for the Free Press. Find his personal blog here, his portfolio here and his Twitter feed here.