New kid in town

“Welcome to Chico!”

If I had a dollar for every time I’ve heard that since I got here Saturday, I wouldn’t have to work this month. (Oops, forgot about taxes; make that $2.)

I couldn’t have received a warmer welcome to my new home. At the mall, downtown, at the Cammies, Chicoans have been unanimously gracious. I am excited to be here, and I’m glad you’re happy to have me.

Monday marked my first day on the job, and the third away from my last job. The News & Review printed my particulars last week (“CN&R hires new editor,” Newslines, March 30), but to recap quickly, I spent almost 17 years at The Press-Enterprise in Riverside—my first and only employer after graduating from Stanford. Not that I only had one job; I worked throughout the newsroom, on every floor of the three-story building.

How did I end up here? Plain good fortune.

My fiancée, Amy Dolinar, is a native Chicoan. She is completing her medical residency in pediatrics and chose her hometown as the place to hang up her shingle this fall. Her family is here: dad Bill, stepmom Donna, sister Liz, grandma Jo. I would have been coming here regardless of whether I got a job; the fact that I got a great one, at a paper beloved by her family and me, is incredible.

I don’t like to move around much—13 of my past 17 years, I’ve lived in the same apartment. I also don’t like change for change’s sake. You won’t find the News & Review suddenly turned upside down and backwards (or printed upside down and backwards). You’ll see subtle changes that may add up over time, with the aim of making the paper even stronger.

I have a lot to learn about my new hometown, and I look forward to meeting more of my new neighbors. Please feel free to drop me a line telling me what you like about Chico and CN&R—and what concerns you. Or just say hello.

I don’t think I’ll ever tire of hearing, “Welcome to Chico!”