OLD Media Moves

Reuters losing another DC reporter

June 29, 2012

Posted by Chris Roush


Jim Vicini, who covers the Supreme Court for Reuters, announced his departure from the Washington bureau on Friday.

He is the latest to leave the organization rather than deal with a Performance Improvement Plan. Earlier this month, Talking Biz News reported that longtime economics reporter Glenn Somerville left under similar circumstances.

Vicini has a reputation in Washington as someone who can parse complex decisions quickly — he was the first reporter to get Bush v. Gore right and he was quick and accurate, per usual, with Thursday’s health care ruling — the one that CNN and Fox got wrong.

Here is his email to the staff:

After nearly 35 ½ years at Reuters, I have decidedly mixed emotions in letting everyone know that today is my last day.

It has been an honor and privilege to have made so many wonderful friends and to have worked with so many consummate professionals over the years.

I had the opportunity to report  on the healthcare and so many other  landmark Supreme Court rulings, the Justice Department, the 9/11 investigation,  major trials, spies, terrorists,  scandals, nine AGs and  four FBI directors during the past 28 years.

I would be remiss not to mention that it all began in commodities —  as a young reporter in his second job out of college doing a brief stint in New York, then covering  the Chicago commodities markets, working on the commodities editing desk and finally reporting countless USDA crop reports after moving to the Washington bureau more than 30 years ago.

Our new bureau chief, Marilyn Thompson, recently remarked about the need for a ‘happy culture.’ I totally agree with her and remember in years past the atmosphere of fun, exhilaration and joy in the Washington bureau while producing hard-hitting, market-moving wire service journalism that beat the pants off the competition.

Over the years, I have jokingly referred to colleagues about ‘Vicini’s rules.’ I want to share a few in no particular order:

The more paper in a government press packet handed out at a news conference, the less the news.

The more times you get an email about an event, the less likely there will be news.

Write fewer internal emails; write more stories.

With Debbie Charles when we worked on the beat together. If there’s a difficult decision with a colleague such as who gets the byline or who works on a weekend, flip a coin.

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