Less than a week after Ken Kurson resigned as editor in chief of the Observer, the publication has laid off four staffers. They were notified today, individually, by Tom D’Agostino, Observer Media’s controller and vice president of operations, reports WWD’s Kara Bloomgarden-Smoke.
Those let go from an already small staff include Dana Schwartz, who is best known as the writer of an open letter to Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner, who was then owner of the paper (it’s now owned by his family), after Trump tweeted an image of Hillary Clinton that had anti-Semitic overtones. Closing line: “Well, here I am, and here we are. Both Jewish, both members of the media. And you might choose silence, but I’ve said my piece.” She had been a culture writer there.
Vinnie Mancuso, who had been deputy arts and entertainment editor, and Cole Garner Hill, who had been managing editor and music editor, also tweeted that they were no longer with the Observer.
The publication’s response to an inquiry by Bloomgarden-Smoke, about whether this decision foreshadowed the end of the paper, was as follows: “Like any other publication, the recent departure of its editor provides an opportunity to consider additional changes to ensure Observer’s continued growth and future success.”
In the meantime, Merin Curotto will be interim managing editor. Most recently, she had been executive editor of the Observer Contributor Network.