The meaning of last week's shake-up at Douglas Manchester's U-T San Diego, in which honcho Mike Hodges departed to head an internet design and marketing outfit, leaving editor Jeff Light to become president and chief operating officer as well as to continue as editor, is still being parsed by local politicos and media types.
So far, no one has been announced to take over Light's editorial duties, which would appear to give him more than enough to do at the print-cum-website bought by Manchester back in 2011 from vulture investment company Platinum Equity of Beverly Hills.
The longer Light continues in his dual role, some speculate, the likelier the highly politicized operation may be ultimately unloaded or donated to a non-profit corporation being set up by Point Loma real estate mogul and yachtsman Malin Burnham.
Meanwhile, the peripatetic real estate mogul and Republican powerhouse Manchester has put out word in Austin, Texas, that he's looking for a new hand around his executive offices there to meet and greet the flocks of Texas VIPs he frequently plays host to.
According to a job notice in Austin’s Business Journal, the new executive assistant will project "a professional image for continual positive impact with staff, government officials, and high level visitors and callers."
In addition, the staffer will act "as [a] conduit of information and liaison between…general project staff, public relations groups, Papa Doug Manchester, Douglas Manchester, Bob Petrossian and project vendors."
Manchester has long been a fan of Texas and a backer of its Republican political causes, including the putative presidential plans of departing governor Rick Perry.
Among his other Texas-centric politicking, two years ago the publisher threw a fundraising lunch at the U-T's Headliners Club for the Texas Land Commission bid of George Prescott Bush, eldest son of ex-Florida governor and current presidential hopeful Jeb Bush.
“Salary will start at $5,000 month / $60,000 per year with full benefits and opportunity for growth," says the executive assistant advertisement by Manchester Texas Financial Group.
"Manchester Texas Financial Group, LLC (MTFG) manages all Texas-based holdings in commercial real estate and hotel development for Manchester Financial Group, its Parent Company," says the notice, which adds that, "the company's first local project in Austin is a luxury convention center hotel known as The Fairmont Austin."
The hotel finally broke ground after years of hype and delay late last year after it was announced that L.A.'s Colony Capital, run by distressed lending king Thomas Barrack, whose motto is "befriend the bewildered," had agreed to fund the deal. A subsequently recorded document showed that Manchester borrowed $295 million from Colony.
Other tasks for the assistant will include performing "the basic set-up and troubleshooting as necessary of any audio visual equipment, online meeting systems or other technology as needed for meetings" and "using Internet for information and research."
Besides having an "Associates Degree (A.S., A.A.S., etc.) in business or a related field of real estate development," the new employee is expected to be "intuitively supportive, knowing what is needed beforehand and acting to make it happen before being directed," and to have the "ability to maintain confidentiality of work items and sensitive conversations….
"A strong proficiency in the use of computer systems and software such as Microsoft Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint, Internet Explorer and others," is also sought.