New Editor Takes Over at Tribune

New Editor Takes Over at Tribune

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- Nancy Conway, executive editor for a San Francisco Bay-area newspaper group, will replace James E. Shelledy as editor of The Salt Lake Tribune, the paper announced Monday.

Conway, 60, starts June 2. She takes over the newspaper after two of its reporters admitted they collaborated on a retracted National Enquirer story about the Elizabeth Smart abduction.

Reporters Michael Vigh and Kevin Cantera were fired for lying about their involvement with the tabloid, and Shelledy resigned Thursday after coming under criticism for his handling of the scandal.

"I think that's an inspired choice for the Tribune and for Utah," Shelledy said about Conway.

Conway, who was in the Tribune newsroom Monday, promised to confront the newspaper's recent problems head-on. "We need to do some healing in the newsroom. The key is really to focus on the product."

She vowed to aggressively cover the community and maintain the newspaper's independent voice.

"I expect excellence. I aspire to excellence, and expect the same of others," she said.

Before becoming a journalist, Conway worked as a medical technician and an English teacher. She has a bachelor's degree in English from the University of Massachusetts, and grew up near Boston.

Conway is executive editor of Alameda Newspaper Group, a five-paper group led by the Oakland Tribune. Alameda is an outlet of MediaNews Group Inc. of Denver, which also owns The Salt Lake Tribune.

Conway has been ANG's executive editor for eight years, overseeing The Oakland Tribune, Alameda Times-Star, The Daily Review, The Argus, and the Tri-Valley Herald.

She moved to California after working a year as a metro editor at The Denver Post.

Salt Lake Tribune publisher Dean Singleton, who also is vice chairman and chief executive officer of MediaNews, said Conway will bring "fresh air" to the newsroom and use a team approach to lead the state's largest newspaper.

"Jay was more of a one-man leader. She's more of a team player," Singleton said.

Shelledy first punished and then fired Vigh and Cantera for aiding the tabloid in a story about Elizabeth Smart's family. The reporters were paid $10,000 each for their work with the Enquirer.

The Enquirer retracted the story, headlined "Utah Cops: Secret Diary Exposes Family Sex Ring," and claimed it got most of its information from Vigh and Cantera.

(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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