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Mike Connelly: Two new editors on The Buffalo News masthead

Mike Connelly

Last week, two new editors showed up on The Buffalo News masthead: Margaret Kenny Giancola, deputy managing editor, and Denise Jewell Gee, assistant managing editor.

The masthead is the space at the top of The News’ editorial page that lists the newspaper executives. It is a sacred place for newspapers. The New York Times, which names 17 editors on its page A2 masthead, even refers to its senior newsroom leaders as “the masthead.”

The News has long taken a minimalist approach: the publisher, editor, managing editor, editorial page editor and the paper’s chairman, Omaha billionaire Warren E. Buffett. We take great pride in Buffett’s four-decade ownership of The News.

Being on the masthead means that Kenny and Gee have responsibilities for what you read that go beyond the staffs they lead.

The best way to describe Kenny’s job: She is in charge of publishing. That ranges from minute-by-minute story play to deciding what goes on Page One of the newspaper; from re-engineering how the newsroom produces the newspaper to rethinking our digital publications. As we grow into a collection of print and digital businesses, Kenny is in charge of turning the news and information our reporters generate into great print and digital experiences.

Gee is responsible for the news: all of our local news and business coverage, the Albany and Washington bureaus and PolitiFact New York. At her disposal: the largest reporting staff in New York State outside the New York City metro area.

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Kenny and Gee are Western New York natives and City of Buffalo residents.

Books for Kids: 23 years, 2.8 million books

For 23 years, Books for Kids has had a simple goal: Ensure that every child has at least one book to call her or his own. Started by SUNY Buffalo State professors Betty Capella and Geraldine Boyd – and thanks to the generosity of Western New Yorkers – Books for Kids has distributed nearly 2.8 million books.

This year, Books for Kids seeks donations of 50,000 new books and $15,000 cash. Books should be suitable for infants to 14-year-olds. The cash helps buy Braille, multicultural and large-print books.

Through April 30, donate books at Wegmans, any Buffalo and Erie County library, The Buffalo News and any Dipson Theatre, Mattress Firm or Raymour & Flanigan store.

The News has been a partner in Books for Kids from the start. Reading changes lives. Give a book, and help change a life.

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