Editorial - September 2006

OK, we get it-the only constant in life is change. But we would deeply appreciate it if change would not come beating down our door in large Poseidon-like waves.

And we would further appreciate it if change didn't involve good-byes to people we adore. We have a lovely team here of bright, talented people who care deeply about what they do.

We do not want to lose any of them-but their lives, their families and their dreams are calling.

It's not as bad as it looks. (OK, it is pretty bad.) But really, we do not have the plague in this office. We just have a conflagration of people having epiphanies-many of them have stuck here longer than they should because we genuinely enjoy working together.

In the last months and the coming ones, we say goodbye to these wonderful people:

Patti Minglin, my fellow associate publisher-or "ass. pub." as we say-and head of the sales department, has left to focus on her great kids, Hannah, Nate and Jack, as that spectacular husband of hers takes on another job opportunity. Patti seems a rare breed. Not only does she love selling, but she loves journalism. (Perhaps not as much as she loves the WGN weatherman Paul Conrad, but that borders more on obsession.) She believes the magazine's mission of top-notch journalism is the best business decision. She was a joy to work with, because she always had a smile, a laugh and a great story.

Carol Fumo, sales and promotions coordinator, is the mother of two dear girls and the most amazing physical trainer-her side business. Word is Carol could kill your muscle groups with a smile and barely a bead of sweat. Carol added a level of decency to our offices and was a delightful person to be around.

Lorien Menhennett, our associate editor, who at the ripe old age of 24, has actually been at this company for more than six years-she started as an intern. A beautiful writer, an amazing editor, a fascinating artist and a true old soul, it's been a pleasure sharing pizza, music and deadlines with her. Lorien's attention to detail is remarkable. This woman can spot a misplaced comma at seven paces. And as editor of Chicago Baby, she put out an award-winning edition.

Beverly Mendoza, our calendar editor, has finished her master's degree at Columbia College in creative writing and she is moving to Hawaii to write her novels. (This is so not fair. We are trying not to drool all over her desk and serenade her with Israel Kamakawiwo'ole songs in the secret hope that she will take us with her to start Kaui Parent.) Beverly is one talented woman. We asked her to sign many napkins that we plan to auction on eBay when her novels top the New York Times Best Seller list. We have further asked her to be gentle with Chicago Parent if she writes Calendar Girl, the memoir of one woman doing the job of three while contemplating a jump out a second story window.

Kathy Grayson. Who? Actually, Kathy never worked at Chicago Parent. But we love her as though she did. She worked down the hall for our sister publications, the weekly newspapers that our parent company produces. Kathy is, and was, a welcome visitor to our green bean bag chair in the corner. She leaves for a new life in Minnesota.

Kim Chen. Another non-Chicago Parent person who we adore and who up until very soon worked down the hall as well.

Nancy Drew. OK, I know it just seems as though we are getting silly now. But really, that's her name. And she was a writer for Chicago Parent, we are very proud to say. She and her husband Kevin Horan, a shooter extraordinaire, are moving to Whidbey Island off of Seattle. You will read about Nancy's novel next year and you will be blown away.

Finally, our wonderful, dear Cindy Richards is taking off one title. She is stepping down as full-time senior editor but will remain as our travel editor, writing, contributing and coordinating our expanded travel sections for Chicago Parent and Chicago Parent Going Places.

A gifted writer and editor, Cindy has given more than we can measure in her four years here. Her mark is on our three magazines.

And on a personal note, Cindy is not only a longtime colleague but my dearest friend. The type of friend few people are lucky enough to have-one who will walk through fire with you day-in and day-out. We've faced deadlines, heated discussions, as well as life's great ups and downs in our years here and at the Chicago Sun-Times. Yet, we've been able to fall into each other's arms and laugh about it all. I can think of no one else I would prefer working with side by side forever. But because I adore her, I want her to do more of what she adores-traveling with her great kids, Tess and Evan, and her handsome husband, Scott.

We could just lock the door and say, "Hell no, you can't go." OK, this is a very unChicago Parent-like plan, particularly since the lock on our door is broken.

Coming in August: Just who's putting out those magazines anyway? If you are a parent, an experienced editor, and want to join our team, please feel free to send me a note at

Kids Eat Chicago

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