Five elaborate prom shoots, 150 issues, 325 high school journalists and gazillions of fond memories later, it has come time for one editor to say goodbye.
Gretchen Letterman, who with Kelley Benham French founded the Times' weekly newspaper and website for Tampa Bay area high schools in 2009, is leaving the helm of tb-two* to go take care of someone in a generation different from the high school students who have been her life for the past five years: her 93-year-old mother.
"It might be cliched to say my high school staff has kept me young, but it's the truth. How else would I be so able to check Urban Dictionary without turning beet red?'' Letterman said.
"I'm so proud of the young journalists I've had the privilege to work with, especially my student editors who have gone on to study at wonderful places and land wonderful jobs. Journalism is evolving, but its future is safe with this bunch."
Letterman is retiring after a 31-year career at the Times to spend more time with her mom in Indiana.
Taking over for her is Jodi Pushkin, who also succeeded Letterman as Newspaper in Education manager in 2009. Pushkin, who will continue to oversee the NIE department, taught journalism at H.B. Plant High and currently teaches online classes at St. Leo University.
"I am looking forward to working with the tb-two* editors and staff," Pushkin said. "I have even downloaded the Urban Dictionary app in preparation for this exciting new role."