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Editor's resignation is talk of the town

Lately, the buzz in Original Carrollwood has been about its community newsletter instead of what's in it.

Its former editor, Dawn Hudson, recently resigned from The Caroler after 13 months, saying she wanted to devote more time to her family and other business ventures.

In the March issue of the newsletter Hudson told readers she was leaving "to lighten the load of responsibilities on my plate, to be at home just a little bit more with my family and precious 5-year-old son Andrew, to put my feet up an extra hour a week."

Then why would the company co-owned by Hudson submit a bid to the Carrollwood Civic Association seeking to fill the same job from which she resigned?

Initially, Hudson denied submitting the bid. Then, she declined to elaborate on why her company, Hudson Marketing, was interested in the job.

Betsey Hapner, president of the Carrollwood Civic Association, said Hudson resigned in February over a salary dispute. Hapner said board members rejected Hudson's request for a minimum 33-percent increase.

"She has made several requests that we reconsider our refusal to grant the significant increase," Hapner said. "But our budget does not provide for that large an increase, and it's far above the raises people are getting in the current economic environment."

Hudson, who is also the administrator for the Carrollwood Area Business Association, co-owns Hudson Marketing Group with Maria Hochwarth-Alverez, who worked with Hudson on The Caroler as art director.

The two women incorporated Hudson Marketing in Nov. 5, 2002, according to the Division of Corporations. While Hudson edited The Caroler, Hudson Marketing handled its printing.

"She did a good job," Hapner said. "There's no question about that. Nobody has got any problem with the job she did. As far as we're concerned, she went over and above."

This was the first time a non-resident has edited Original Carrollwood's newsletter and that may have caused some of the friction.

Hudson, who lives in Lutz, often attended meetings and community events that were not required as part of her job.

Unlike her predecessors, Hudson often edited the content of articles submitted by the homeowners, board members and various committee members without consulting them, Hapner said, adding that Hudson solicited articles from people outside the neighborhood as well.

"We suggested that instead of getting the large increase that she do less work and she didn't want to do that either," Hapner said.

_ Tim Grant can be reached at 269-5311 or at