Frank Rich leaves NY Times after more than 30 years there - moves to New York Magazine

New York editor Adam Moss called it a great day for the magazine:

“One of the many things I have always admired about Frank is his creative restlessness,” said Moss. “He refuses to coast, even while still at the height of his creative powers. He left the drama-critic job to reinvent himself as a political analyst, and he was superb at both. This is his next chapter. Frank will be working in a variety of innovative formats here. His legion of readers knows him for his insight and wit. But they don't know what a superb editorial mind he has. He has been a counselor to me throughout our careers. I first worked with him at Esquire; he was a brilliant contributor to The New York Times Magazine during my time there, and we collaborated on the remaking of the Times’ culture coverage. At New York, he will be shaping a new kind of magazine section around the subject of his monthly essay. He will also be offering his insights weekly online, in a feature designed especially to showcase his talents as an original observer of American culture.”

Frank Rich, who over the years has become one of the leading liberal opinion writers in the country with his essays in the Sunday New York Times Week in Review section, is leaving the newspaper that has been his home for more than 30 years to now write and edit for New York Magazine.

In a press release issued earlier Tuesday, Rich said:

“There is no greater newspaper than the Times,” said Rich. “I leave the paper with deep affection for both the institution and my many brilliant colleagues, and with much gratitude for the opportunity the paper gave me to serve in two dream jobs in journalism. I’ve spent much of the past year talking to friends inside and outside the Times about what might be most exciting for me next. It was impossible to top the idea of reuniting with my friend Adam Moss, who has played a crucial role in my writing life since the late eighties and who, as editor of the Times Magazine, was instrumental in my transition from arts criticism to broader essay writing. The role Adam has created for me at his revitalized New York Magazine will allow me to write with more reflection, variety, and space than is possible within the confines of a weekly newspaper column — and, for that matter, will allow me to stretch the definition of a magazine column.”

In case you haven't noticed, New York Magazine has been revitalized in recent years under Adam Moss, and is definitely one of the best weekly magazines for politics and culture in the country.  Just this week the paper has a couple of outstanding reads, one on an anguished Bernie Madoff talking candidly with the magazine in the wake of the suicide of his son, and an enlightening profile of political strategist Karl Rove as well.

Long time fans of Rich remember that it was his theater criticism that made him a national star, though always one of the most hated men on Broadway.  He was the paper's chief theater critic from 1980-1993.  In 1994 he moved on up to becoming an op-ed columnist, and in the late 90's became a senior writer for the New York Times Magazine.  He'll begin his new gig with New York in June.

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