Former Essence magazine editor Angela Burt-Murray, who was point person for the Huffington Post's new project targeting African Americans, has left the project, Derek J. Murphy, chief operating officer of the venture, told Journal-isms on Thursday.

"I'm currently managing staff recruiting and site development with our partnership team. Angela Burt Murray is no longer part of these efforts or this partnership," Murphy said via e-mail.

Before the GlobalBlack project, Murphy was Huffington Post's senior vice president, business development, joining the organization in 2009 from CNN, where he headed strategic partnerships for the CNN Interactive Group, forging alliances with companies that included Google, CareerBuilder and LG Electronics.

Burt-Murray left Essence magazine in November after editing it for five years and surfaced at the Huffington Post project in January. She did not respond to a request for comment and Murphy did not explain Burt-Murray's departure.

The GlobalBlack concept was developed with Sheila Johnson, co-founder of Black Entertainment Television. It has its detractors.

Columnist Ruben Navarrette of the Washington Post Writers Group wrote last week:

"There's the hitch. Shouldn't this be the goal of every media company in the country? If you want to cover the United States, then you should cover it in all its color and complexity. Otherwise, your product — newspaper, magazine, website, radio or television network, etc. — will soon become outdated and irrelevant.

"Besides, the 'black community' is an inseparable part of the American community. . . ."

Ernest Dunbar, a writer and editor for the old Look magazine and one of the first black reporters at any mainstream national publication, died Thursday after a long illness, his son, Dean Dunbar, said on Friday.

Ernest Dunbar was 83 and lived in Manhattan.

He was president of Black Perspectives, a New York group of black journalists, which in the late 1960s predated the National Association of Black Journalists. In addition to his work at Look, a coffee-table sized magazine that emphasized photographs as did its competitor, Life, Dunbar authored books that included "The Black Expatriates: A Study of American Negroes in Exile," a 1968 book for which he is listed as editor.

Some of his Look pieces evoke the era: "Inside Negro Africa: Crisis in the Congo: The Rude Awakening" (1959); "The Audacious World of Adam Powell" (1962); "Yugoslavia: Karl Marx in a Mercedes" (1968) and "Black on White TV" (1971), which featured photographs of Dunbar with half his face painted white, posed behind a television screen.

According to the family obituary, "A native of Philadelphia, he received a B.A. in Journalism from Temple University in 1954, where he also served as editor of the university newspaper. He did graduate work in journalism at Northwestern University, and was later awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Journalism from Temple in 1971. He joined Look Magazine as a reporter in 1954, was promoted to Assistant Editor in 1958, and was Senior Editor from 1959 until Look ceased publication in 1971. He was the first black reporter hired by Look and one of the first black journalists at any national publication. He wrote articles for Look covering a wide range of assignments that included prominent news developments and personalities on the American scene as well as abroad including articles on Martin Luther King, Malcolm X, Indira Gandhi, and the Jackson 5.

"Mr. Dunbar served as an advisor to [New York] Gov. Averell Harriman on a 9-nation African factfinding tour for presidential candidate John F. Kennedy in 1960. He was also the moderator of a show called 'The World at 10' when Channel 13 first went on the air in 1962. From 1971 until 1975 he was a freelance writer, contributing articles to magazines such as Redbook, Saturday Review, Reader's Digest, and the New York Times Magazine.

"From 1975 until 1990 he was the Chief Editor of Publications for the Exxon Corporation, where he managed the publication of 'The Lamp', their shareholder quarterly magazine, as well as the Exxon Corporation Annual Report."

He also won several awards. A memorial service is to be announced at a later date.

2 Black Journalists Among Cuts at Charlotte Observer

Two of five newsroom employees laid off at the Charlotte (N.C.) Observer this week were black journalists Phillip Hoffman, a videographer, and Jerome Johnson, a graphic designer, the two confirmed for Journal-isms on Friday.

Johnson, 49, is a 22-year veteran of the paper who had worked in sales, pre-press and magazine design at the paper, he said. Asked what he'd like to do next, he said, "I really don't know at this point" but that he might go back to school.

Hoffman, 45, had been at the Observer for seven years. "I kind of look at this as an opportunity, a way of getting my own thing going," he said. "I shoot video. I'm working on my editing reel." However, he said he realized that "I'm still a father of three with a mortgage."

The Observer reported Monday that it was laying off 20 employees as "part of an effort to cut costs as the shaky economy continues to plague advertisers and revenues remain short of the company's goals. . . The Observer is also implementing weeklong furloughs for salaried employees beginning this quarter."

Last year, Vanity Fair published its annual Hollywood issue, and its cover featured an all-white bevy of starlets. 

This year, Rashida Jones and Anthony Mackie, both African Americans, join the other men and women on the cover. Mackie starred in "The Hurt Locker," which won last year's Academy Award for best picture. Jones is the daughter of Quincy Jones and Peggy Lipton and stars in NBC-TV's "Parks and Recreation."

"For this year's Hollywood cover, we put together a group of some of the busiest actors working in Hollywood. The fact that those who fit the bill turned out to be a diverse cast of men and women pleases us tremendously," spokeswoman Beth Kseniak told Journal-isms."

"When alumna Jacki Wells Cisneros and her husband, Gilbert Cisneros, won the Mega Millions lottery in 2010, they vowed to give back to their church and alma maters," the University of Southern California's Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism announced this week. "They have followed through with that pledge by establishing the $1 million Wells Cisneros Scholarship at USC Annenberg, which will be given to promising students who have been admitted to one of the School's undergraduate programs." Richard Horgan added for FishbowlLA: "Other beneficiaries include the California Chicano News Media Association, George Washington University (the Alma Mater of Gilbert Cisneros) and the Hispanic Scholarship Fund." Jacki Wells Cisneros works on the overnight assignment desk at KNBC-TV in Los Angeles.

"The second-half circulation numbers for 2010 were better for a few players, but most magazines saw their readership continue to slide on newsstands," Amy Wicks of Women's Wear Daily wrote Friday, previewing figures from the Audit Bureau of Circulations to be released on Monday. An Essence magazine spokeswoman confirmed a newsstand decline of 8.1 percent for the second half of 2010.

ImpreMedia announced Thursday that Erica Gonzalez will become executive editor and Carmen Villavicencio managing editor of El Diario-La Prensa in New York. Gonzalez joined El Diario in 2006 as opinion page editor; Villavicencio has been news editor.

New York-area McDonald's restaurants honored "Black Media Legends" at the Waldorf-Astoria hotel on Tuesday. They included WCBS-TV sports anchor Otis Livingston, WNBC-TV meteorologist Janice Huff, WABC-TV anchor Sade Baderinwa and veteran NY1 anchor Lewis Dodley, Jerry Barmash reported for FishbowlNY. Others were Audrey J. Bernard of the New York Beacon; Fred "Bugsy" Buggs of WRKS FM; Imhotep Gary Byrd of WBLS/WLIB; Brian Custer of SNY-TV; Tim Daughtry of Fox TV; Funkmaster Flex of WQHT-FM; Ed Gordon of BET; Scott Pierce of WWOR-TV; James Shipley, WNBC-TV; Craig Treadway, WPIX-TV; Charles Williams, WCBS-TV; Malachy Williams, WNYW/WWOR-TV; and Kelly Wright, Fox News.

"Less than two years into a reported $3 million, multi-year deal, shock jock Don Imus and Fox Business Network appear to be going their separate ways," Paul Bedard reported Wednesday for U.S. News & World Report. Radio Ink followed up: "Commenting on the U.S. News story on his program this morning, Imus said he wasn't amused by the comments by the Fox business boss. He called the boss at the network and indicated he didn't get a straight answer."

Marcus Chan, who became the business and technology editor of the San Francisco Chronicle a year ago, has been in charge of an interesting experiment," Talking Biz News reported on Wednesday, publishing a Q&A with Chan. "The Chronicle announced in March that it would launch an expanded business news section with the help of Bloomberg News called Business Report."

Two more cases of people conjuring black men as their victimizers: In New York, Brooklyn nun Mary Turcotte, member of what the New York Daily News termed a fringe Christian sect, "confessed to an unholy lie: telling cops she was sexually attacked and left unconscious in a snowbank, sources said Monday," Alison Gendar and James Fanelli reported Tuesday in the Daily News. In Minnesota, "A Duluth man who police believe shot himself with a long gun falsely reported to a 911 operator that a black male was among the people he claimed shot him," Mark Stodghill wrote Thursday in the Duluth News Tribune. “People assume that if you implicate a black person the story is more legitimate, again, because of the racial stereotypes we see every day about blacks and crime,” Claudie Washington, president of the Duluth chapter of the NAACP, said in the story.

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Journal-isms is published on the site of the Maynard Institute for Journalism Education (mije.org). Reprinted on The Root by permission.