Closing chapter: VQR's Genoways resigns, Waldo celebrates

After serving for nine years as the editor of Virginia Quarterly Review, Ted Genoways has stepped down to "concentrate on his own writing," according to a midnight UVA press release. Recently appointed deputy editor Donovan Webster will serve as interim editor until a national search for a new editor is launched in July.

"Ted has been an outstanding editor," said Thomas Skalak, UVA vice president for research, who took over operation of the magazine following an internal investigation in 2010. "Under his direction, VQR built a devoted following and an unparalleled record of recognition."

"I look back on my nine years as editor with pride, but I also hope that the new staff will not feel in any way encumbered by that legacy," said Genoways. "VQR is theirs to steward and re-imagine now, and I hope they will be able to build on and exceed past successes."

Judging from the UVA press release, Genoways single-handedly transformed VQR from an obscure college literary magazine to one that could compete with the likes of National Geographic and the New Yorker.

"Under Ted Genoways, Virginia Quarterly Review has become one of the most widely-admired magazines in the country,” said Sid Holt, chief executive of the American Society of Magazine Editors. "From 2005 to 2011, VQR received 25 National Magazine Award nominations in categories ranging from fiction to multimedia."

However, in a recent post on his local news blog, former VQR web editor Waldo Jaquith offers a candid assessment of his time at the VQR that calls into question the official UVA take-away on Genoways' tenure.

In August 2010, VQR and Genoways also became the most widely talked about magazine for a different reason: the tragic suicide of it managing editor, Kevin Morrissey, who shot himself down by the Coal Tower property off Water Street after years of struggling with depression and weeks of tension with his boss, which were recently revealed in a Hook story about a series of emails between Morrissey and UVA officials.

Morrissey was an integral part of VQR's success between 2005 and 2011, editing and reading manuscripts in Genoways' absence, and managing a staff of three. Weeks before his death, Morrissey appears to have had enough.

"Sorry to be blunt about this," writes Morrissey in an email to UVA human resources manager Angelee Godbold just days before his death, "but I'm feeling little optimism that the situation will improve." Godbold acknowledges that the situation with Genoways has been "very painful" for Morrissey and his staff for "a long time," and calls it "one of the most awkward workplace scenarios in which I've been involved for awhile."

As Jaquith recalls, Genoways' "increasingly erratic and nasty behavior towards his employees" not only culminated in Morrissey's suicide, but prompted the entire staff to quit.  As Jaquith points out, a UVA investigation launched by incoming UVA president Teresa Sullivan "found that Genoways lacked the capacity to supervise employees, demanded that his inappropriate financial practices be ended, and called for an investigation– which apparently has not happened– into his use of university funds to publish his own book of poetry."

The tragedy also led recently to the establishment of the Respect@UVA program, a comprehensive workplace initiative designed to promote "kindness, dignity and respect."

While UVA officials heap praise on Genoways and the VQR's many awards, Jaquith offers a different perspective, from someone on the ground in the VQR office. After Genoways took over, Jaquith says the "publication's focus gradually narrowed, being written for an audience of Genoways' fellow National Magazine Award judges, until every issue was dedicated to wars and various types of misery. Circulation shrank accordingly."

Indeed, under Genoways, while the number of awards may have gone up, the number of subscribers to the VQR went down. Last year, print circulation was listed as 7,000 on the VQR website. However, Skalak told the Hook last April that circulation was 5,000. Today, it's listed as 3,000 on the website, including newsstand and single-copy sales. With only 1,200 of those paid subscribers, Jaquith points out that's two days of unique visitors to his own locally-focused news blog.

"With Genoways leaving, I wish them [newly hired VQR employees] the very best of luck in their efforts to return the magazine to a viable state," writes Jaquith.

Towards Genoways, though, Jaquith has less empathy.

"When [Genoways], through his lawyer, repeatedly and unsubtly implied that the audit of VQR’s finances would reveal that Kevin was stealing from the magazine, and his suicide was because he thought he was about to be caught," says Jaquith. "That was a disgusting, shameful lie, as of course the audit demonstrated. If there is an afterlife, Genoways will be punished accordingly."

Meanwhile, his former workmates appear to have landed on their feet. While Jaquith works for the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, former associate editor Molly Minturn is now the managing editor of UVA's Arts & Sciences Magazine, and former circulation manager Sheila McMillen settled with the university under undisclosed terms and was given early retirement. As for intern/donor-turned-employee Alana Levinson-LaBrosse, she now teaches English and public speaking at the American University of Iraq under the name Marie LaBrosse.

VQR contributor Elliott Woods, who has strongly defended Genoways, declined to comment on the editor's resignation or Jaquith's comments. Skalak, Jon Parrish Peede, and another VQR contributor who has publicly defended Genoways, Tom Bissell, did not respond to requests for comment.

"Unlike Genoways, I’m from Charlottesville, and I intend to die in Charlottesville," writes Jaquith. "Lying might buy some short-term benefit, but the truth always comes out eventually. When it became clear that he was lying, he decided to skip town. But I’m not going anywhere. On June 1, when Genoways is gone, I’ll crack open a split of champagne and mark the conclusion of an unpleasant chapter in my life."

–this story was updated on 4/6/2012 at 12:53pm; original headline: "VQR editor Ted Genoways resigns"

This story is a part of the Turmoil at the VQR special.
Read more on: Ted Genowaysvqr

57 comments

Genoways down. Starsia should be next. How's that investigation coming along Terry?

At long last. Genoways did the right thing. Right for him, right for the magazine, right for U Va. Now I can start contributing to U Va's alumni fund again.

The right thing? You might want to hang on to your checkbook. It's right for him--that's for sure. He has a multi-year contract. Think he's going to just walk away from that without a very persuasive severance package? Wonder how much that's costing Virginia taxpayers? On top of VQR's still ridiculously bloated budget.

"Compete with "The New Yorker"? Puhleez!!
While I understand provincial pride and the desire of UVA boosters to be the Sorbonne of the west, let's not get carried away here...
Once you get more than 500 miles away from Charlottesville it gets hard to explain to people where exactly Charlottesville is much less what it is.

Is UVA going to inform us on how must it cost the taxpayers to get rid of him?

The Starsia comments are misplaced. Yes, he had a bad seed under his nose that they didn't sniff out in time, but go look at his track record for years of dedicated service to the community, with the Special Olympics, with the graduation rates, etc. He's a good man marred by a terrible kid.

Pretty sure VQR already had a devoted following before Genoways was hired. He did raise its visibility. But perhaps that's not all that great an accomplishment when you have an $800,000 endowment (accumulated through the efforts of the previous editor and his staff) to burn through.

All 3,000* subscribers say it competes with National Geographic and the New Yorker ( in their Households ). *the Hook mentioned how many subscribers they have, I don't remember.

Sam--according to the story in The Chronicles of Higher Education today--
http://chronicle.com/article/Editor-of-Virginia-Quarterly/131423/
there are 1,771 subscriptions.

@DTB -- Starsia turned a blind eye to his players. Now UVA is turning a blind eye to Starsia's lack of supervision and oversight of HIS players which, by the way, continues to this day. He said he's not changing a thing about the way he coaches!

"Not sniff out in time"? He didn't even try. He doesn't want to know what goes on with HIS team. Ignorance for him is bliss!

I don't care what his track record is. HIS misguided approach to coaching HIS team cost a young woman HER life. That is too high a price to pay for Wins. The blood is on HIS hands.

I hope that Genoways--in his future writing career--uses a nom de plume. Anyone with any shred of ethics should run the other way when they see his name on a book, byline or elsewhere. Good writers are like musicians: there are tons of them out there to enjoy under the radar. Keep this creep under the radar and put him back to struggling artist status.

And Toni H., you beat me to it! The constant refrain from those close to UVa or those with some financial interest in it is humorous but hackneyed. This business of UVa's status around the country is a poor-man's desire to be linked to the accomplisments of its founder. Call it living in the past, if you will. Jefferson was a great man in many ways, but the world has changed since the late 18th Century, and now "The University" is reduced to boasting about a 3k-circulation pub, grad rates of student athletes, diversity departments, magnificent new buildings, and its first gal president.

Small town, small people.

R.I.P.: Button Gwinnett

"Concentrate on his own writing"? That's like saying he's "leaving to spend more time with his family"

The link I posted if for subscribers. This link will work for everyone for five days
http://chronicle.com/article/Editor-of-Virginia-Quarterly/131423/?key=QD...

Thanks Chocolate: that Chron. of Higher Ed. article says Genoways put his house on the market "earlier this year." So "earlier this year" would be the time around which an enterprising reporter might start sniffing--if he wanted to find out when and why and by whom the decision on Genoways' departure was made. Mr. Genoways is suddenly leaving an editor in chief position paying way over $100,000 under the contract he wrote for himself which still has years to run, for no job with no pay. Well, as I said earlier, its the right thing to do and we should give him credit for that, even if it comes a little late.

Try reading the press release before you comment. It doesn't state, or even imply that VQR competes with National Geo or the New Yorker. the direct quote from the release is:

"This year the magazine was again honored by the National Magazine Award judges with three more nominations, including its seventh for general excellence, its ninth for fiction and its first for photography, a category in which it is competing against magazines like National Geographic and Vogue."

I assume that the remarks relating to those national magazines in the article were due to either ignorance on the writer's part or a lame attempt at sarcasm.

As far as the taxpayers footing the bill for Mr Genoways exit goes . . . I doubt it cost them much, since UVA only gets about 5 - 6 % of its budget from the state.

Other than that, good riddance to Mr Genoways.

People, you need to go check the awards that VQR has won, 2011 National Magazine Awards, for example:

VQR wins fiction award, edging out the Atlantic and the New Yorker
http://www.magazine.org/asme/about_asme/asme_press_releases/nma-2011-win...

Also multi-media package, edging out National Geographic and Fast Company

@Betty, " ...don't care what his track record is. HIS misguided approach to coaching HIS team cost a young woman HER life." That man had nothing to do with her death. He is a coach, not a keeper. The faculty is not responsible for the behavior of adult students who insist upon living on their own. If students want to be taken care of, the first thing they should do is move into a dormitory. That woman obviously was engaging in a very sick relationship and her family, knowing this, should have sought help for her, not Starsia. Even if they did, she did not have to accept it and she obviously didn't.

That ought to teach that character not to take on Waldo.

Dave McNair,

Respectfully, Nat Geo and The New Yorker do not exist to compete for "National Magazine Awards", whatever they are.

So to say that because VQR won one of these things it therefore competes with these journals is a logical fallacy. The comments regarding provincial insularity do apply here.

It's nice that VQR won some awards. That does not put them on a par with the journals you mentioned by any stretch of the imagination.

meanwhile,

National Magazine Awards: "generally considered the highest award in the magazine industry; in the magazine world, they are roughly equivalent to the Pulitzer Prizes.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Magazine_Awards

Not sure why you're intent on belittling VQR's accomplishments...the little mag went up against some of the best magazines in the country in the NMA's...and won. Does that mean the VQR is a better magazine than the New Yorker? No. But give credit where credit is due.

some of y'all are wondering "how much this will cost the taxpayers".Not much at all.The University is a state university only nominally.Think of it as a very large private school.Those coaches' salaries aren't costing you concerned taxpayers (LOL),either.

C'ville Eye - that was a very low blow considering you appear to be blaming not the person who killed her but her family and herself. When laws were not available for her to obtain a restraining order and UVA (and other colleges and universities) are notorious for pushing female victims under the carpet like dust. Appears you too blame the victim there, not the criminal. Now, I am also not one that believes one should implement items out there to raise children because parents are not living up to their responsiblities BUT I do believe the same sort of resources and policies should be implemented to protect victims from abuse and crime.

And truly the coach should have gone further over the incident where the two players got into an argument and one was left with a battered face. I also find it insane that if you serve in the US Military and get a speeding ticket on leave, your commander knows before you return to Base. UVA should have that type of authority over their students, after all, it is their image at stake.

I find it appauling that UVA continued to keep Genoways on staff when it appears he wasn't doing his job - or performing his duties but pushing the work onto others. He was paid the "big bucks" not them to do the duties assigned. It just states volumes about UVA and how it does handle these issues. There is a history there.

The cycles need to be broken.

Perhaps the money spent to send Genoways away isn't coming from the taxpayers, but it comes from somewhere--and wherever it originates, the payment is, I suspect, substantial, given the amount of time left on TG's contract. Does it come from the endowment? Tuition and fees? If he worked in the athletic department some deep-pocketed booster could cover it (and claim a tax deduction), but I doubt VQR has any such donor, now that Levinson-Labrosse is far, far away. So it most likely comes out of the kitty that pays salaries--and raises for most other UVA employees are a faint memory. UVA's priorities are as screwy as ever.

Why is it so hard to see the obvious. The issue for UVA is cultural. People who act or those who don't act are responding to the culture. Whether the Lacrosse coach or the editor of the VQR should go isn't as much about these two individuals, it is about a culture that has been around for a very long time.

I've taught at the Ed school and at Darden. Too many faculty are legends in their own minds. Too many people have had too much of the UVA Kool Aid. Out of control behavior has been part of the UVA fabric for almost as long as the school has existed. Read the history, remember Easters, roam around the Corner or the Frat/Sor area and see the same kind of over the top parties that have been around for as long as there have been students at UVA. The whole Jefferson and the UVA mystique has been overplayed. Walk down the streets of Washington, DC and ask non-virginians about Jefferson or UVA and you will likely get a blank stare. Charlottesville is still the old South. It lives in its past and holds on to traditions that the rest of the world find purile, silly or just plain old offensive.

When Katie Couric is touted as one of your best known alumni, one wonders just what UVA values? Katie's time has come and gone. She should retire gracefully from TV and head off into the sunset.

If the UVA culture doesn't change, there will be more blood on the institutional hands. And that blood will be as hard to wash off as was Lady Macbeth's.

I can much agree with Urban Farmer above but there isnt that much Old South about UVa these days (compared to the 1960s/70s when i was first here.its more Big State U, with pretentions).As to Genoways-lets be fair-- he did SOME editorial good- at immense price.He wasn't worth with his price, probably but big man Casteen- the master (beaver) Builder thought so. And this was all handled in typical UVA way-UVA does NO wrong & we will take care of things out of the media spotlight.look at Sullivan's snow job report.

oh and UVa does cost the tax payer. About 8% of costs are pure state supplied. add in various employee costs, security and non-profit write offs and tax exemptions.Uva give great value but it does entail considerable public expenditure still.

Urban Farmer et al are wrong. I've lived in 6 states and have been in the midwest for the last 5 years. UVA has a tremendous reputation. When I tell people where I'm from and where I went to school (UVA), many people comment about what a great school it is, a beautiful place to live, and how Monticello is one of the coolest places they've ever visited. I recently met a woman form MN who after visiting UVA and Monticello was inspired to follow her dream of attending graduate school. If you think CVL is the "old south", you've never been there or you're just ignorant. Why do so many people who could live anywhere in the world choose to live in CVL?

Does this mean that The Hook's obsession with Genoways will finally come to an end? I can only hope.

By the way, interesting to see McNair finally acknowledging VQR's worth and reputation. I guess Charlottesvillians should be content that year-upon-year of prestigious national magazine award nominations and wins merits a one-off comment, at least, since they seemingly did not rise to the level of an actual article (which, you know, might have raised subscriptions to the magazine, if not our local pride in it). But credit where credit is due, right?

26 world,

Perhaps you missed this? I've always acknowledged the magazine's worth and reputation.

http://www.readthehook.com/79364/hotseat-all-jazzed-genoways-keeps-vqr-s...

@Cville Native " UVA should have that type of authority over their students, after all, it is their image at stake." Well it doesn't and it is not the military. No, I was not blaming the victim or her family or his family or their friends, all of whom had more contact with Miss Love than Mr. Starsia did.

@ 26 World: Perhaps I missed something, but I don't recall seeing McNair rank on VQR itself anywhere. In any case, best of luck to the replacement staff when it comes along and has to try and re-make the magazine with the residual ill will and decimated funds Genoways leaves behind him. Well, he *did* say he hoped the new folks would not "feel in anyway encumbered by that legacy." Oh, you mean the endowment, Ted? True dat.

Hey Dave,

I'm sorry if I sound belittling; that is not my intent.

Rather I wish to point out that winning these awards is not the competition that the New Yorker, Atlantic, Nat Geo, et. al. have chosen. They are in a competition for readers and, by that score, VQR is not even on the board.

"Why do so many people who could live anywhere in the world choose to live in CVL?"
I guess you could make the same argument about Lynchburg or Danville...

@Toni H., absolutely you could say the same thing about those communities. Although that's irrelevant to the discussion because the criticism levied above was against CVL, not Danville, Lynchburg, Denver, etc.

UVA's rugs are so lumpy from all the stuff that has been swept under them, I almost tripped the last time I was at Carrs Hill.

Thought Terry was going to get the broom out and clean things up, especially for women, but it hasn't happened.

The male-dominated BOV made sure Terry had a huge supply of the Kool-Aid on hand upon arrival, and she's been drinking it ever since. So sad for her. She's a puppet in the afterglow of King John's reign.

This account from Waldo should not be missed--
http://cvillenews.com/2012/04/04/genoways-resigns/

Ted Genoways left a legacy, alright, just not the one he imagines.

Chocolate, thank you for the link. From all that's been said by others, including the late deceased, and from the look of his face, I concluded a while back that Genoways was a predator towards those beneath him and a sycophant to those above. Such people are often judged up or down based on whether you were one of those whose neck his boot was on.
My comment about the other towns was simply that you could say that 40000 people choosing to live in any jerkwater town could be used as proof of what a fine place it was.
Mark Twain it was, I think, who said something to the effect that the Earth revolves around its axis and the axis is right in the middle of every American small town. Works for me as a humorous jape at provincial pride.

Without attempting to respond to any of the comments above, it is amazing to me how thin skinned most UVA grads and faux Charlottesvillians are. It's a town and a state university. The are dozens of college towns from Hanover, NH to San Diego, CA that are much nicer than Charlottesville. I've attended and taught at many institutions of higher education in this country, the Carribean, Europe and Canada. Again, there are dozens of institutions that are much better than UVA on all sorts of measures.

College kids are college kids, they are not miniature adults. A student in Psych 101 knows that the male brain, especially the part of it that controls implusive behavior, isn't fully developed until the typical male reaches about age twenty-five. The culture at UVA, soaked in booze, stroked in the classroom and stressed in the locker rooms, fuels the bad behavior that continues to be the currency of the State University at Charlottesville. And none of this is new; it has gone on for a very long time. Can Madame Sullivan fix it? The jury is out on that one. Keep reading the Hook! You couldn't make this stuff up!

@UF well said.

Genoways left town? Too bad for him; the Darden School is hiring and he appears to be just their style.

A personal thank you is also in order for Mr. Genoways. Curiosity got the better of me, so I read some of his poetry, which promptly cured my insomnia. Thanks, Ted.

@McNair No, I do remember seeing that back in 2006, when you were slightly more willing, it seems, to acknowledge Genoways' contributions to VQR and its push away from a smaller, more traditional lit mag to something much more ambitious. I must have missed your follow-up piece this year, however, that focused only on celebrating the magazine for its (truly remarkable) accomplishments since then, including the most recent nominations. Even the piece above waters down any accolades with talk of dwindling subscriptions, and then weirdly comparing those subscription numbers with the number of visitors to a local, much more regularly updated news site.

I won't continue to question your stance on the magazine itself, but I will re-up on my relief that your blog-detta against Genoways will hopefully now come to a close. It was beginning to resemble some tv drama that had been renewed for far too many seasons.

@Cville Eye you stated: "That woman obviously was engaging in a very sick relationship and her family, knowing this, should have sought help for her, not Starsia."

And why shouldn't Universities and Colleges have police blotters reported to them? You must pay your taxes in order to keep your vehicle on the road. You pay to go to college and you should conduct yourself in a curtain way. You sign a contract to be in the military, you are to behave in a curtain way. Your criminal record is of issue, just as if you go out and apply for a job. So, why shouldn't colleges and universities keep tabs on their students? Prevent them from registering if they do not return an overdue library book but let them register if they threaten a police officer in another area or rape someone elsewhere? I don't see the difference - at all.

@Urban Farmer - I do agree with you in a sarcastic sort of way. The sad thing is there are truly bright people who pay their dues to attend UVA who do not fit that cube you presented. As I stated, things have to change or it will continue to go on as it does.

@26 world, and others, too, I suppose:

In the interests of full disclosure, my wife is one of the principals in this sordid affair and I am an employee of the university. What interests me here, though, is what it means "to acknowledge Genoways' contributions to VQR and its push away from a smaller, more traditional lit mag to something much more ambitious."

This is more important, I think, than going back and forth on the question of whether Dave McNair is sufficiently respectful of VQR.

For instance, I'm happy to acknowledge how cool Genoways's vision seemed to be, at least when I began to take notice, ca. 2006. The magazine included journalism in addition to fiction and poetry, seemed to value design, and was interested in comics. This is certainly different from the more traditional lit journal I was weaned on, but is it more ambitious? If a journal like the Iowa Review, say, strives to publish only the very best writing, then that strikes me as already being really ambitious. But there's a comparatively small audience for new, sometimes challenging literature, which suggests that as ambitious as the Iowa Review might be, that ambition does not necessarily stretch to having a huge audience.

Genoways's vision struck me as being fundamentally different. Journalism, design, comics: these are the sorts of things more easily aimed at a broader audience. They potentially would make VQR more accessible and, therefore, more widely read. It was as if he were reinventing VQR as a slightly fancier, more intellectual Atlantic. And I believe I read somewhere how Genoways wanted the magazine to be a part of the cultural conversation, which makes sense. Why else write about current events if you don't want that writing to impact the social and political conversation?

In that respect, then, Genoways's ambitions for the magazine became completely tied up with this issue of subscription numbers. If he was spending thousands of dollars to send reporters to Iraq (and he was), then presumably he felt it important for people to read those stories. Except that they didn't read those stories. Old subscribers quit and new subscribers never materialized.

All of this is to say that yes, we can acknowledge Genoways's "contributions" and his "push away" from the traditional model while still wondering whether that's a good thing—even according to the very standards he seems to have set for himself. If he wanted to be a part of the conversation, to have people read his magazine, then didn't he fail spectacularly?

You might respond: "But he won all those awards! Obviously, someone was reading him. Someone valued what he did." And I suppose that's true. But what's always missing from this is any real discussion of the actual content of VQR. I mean, I've literally never heard a conversation where people talked about the actual writing, where they remarked on a particular story or poem, where they showed any engagement whatsoever with the magazine. And this includes subscribers. Instead, people talked about the vision and about the changes and, later, about the scandal.

Some of this Genoways could control and some he couldn't. But I still would challenge those who want to defend VQR to actually point to good writing or stories we haven't seen elsewhere. Make your case.

I don't mean to suggest that there is no good writing, only that it's not good enough to a) point to the awards; and b) say that subscription numbers don't matter. They do matter—according to the magazine's own vision for itself.

@cville native

Actually, I think we agree with each other.By no means am I suggesting that everyone at UVA is a bad. I have a background in higher education and a background in lacrosse. The intersection of the UVA good old boy, the intense lacrosse player and the sociopathic behavior of some is that to which I refer. People become their environments. The environment in many corners of the University is toxic. The difference between the VQR and lacrosse is locus. They are both products of the same environment.

The difference between UVA and the Titanic is that the Titanic had a good band!
.
I'm done, need to feed the chickens, slop the pigs, milk the cows and plant corn. The hard part is doing it in the backyard of a house in Belmont. Not responding further.

Urban farmer and Betty have it spot on. The band on the Titanic comment was funny as it was tragic.

People not only become their environments they reconstruct those environments on a minute by minute, day by day basis. UVA is the way it is because administrators, faculty, staff, students all recreate it everyday rather than reforming it by acting against the toxic culture, its just easier to go along to get along. fear and lack of free speech are the watch words of cultural maintenance and bullying.

I often wonder what would the University culture be like if the state law required that 60% of the BOV be composed of students, parents, staff and faculty who were not appointed by the Gov as a payoff for political contributions. And if the President were not beholden to political interests by huge salaries, houses, jets, free maid and cook service, etc.Who would the President serve if she was appointed by the Facutly, Staff, and students and could be let go by them as well? Maybe when the state abandonded funding for public higher education/UVA, the President would organize a protest in Richmond rather than worrying about losing the perks. maybe adminstrators would see things through the lens of poor and middle class families, staff, and faculty.

McNair's articles are about the toxic nature of the plantation qua corporation UVA has become. Cville has a thin liberal veneer, Jefferson and UVA represent the ideology of white superiority and racism/sexism (read the Notes on Virginia) and the Genoways story reflects how the white male superiority complex works pathologically through the the culture of organizational power and bullying. Bureacracies and adminsitrator action (inaction) can be lethal but we don't have laws to protect the vulnerable. Not everyone at UVA is culpable but I'll bet the top 50% on the pay scale keep the system running the way it always has, turn a blind eye, and only talk about the positive veneer. The bottom line for me is that McNair took an example of organizational bullying sanctioned by the University Administration and exposed it. The story should not end with Genoways leaving, it should end with Sullivan cleans house and other bullys are rooted out. All indications are that the new anti-bullying reporting sytem is a sham, symbolic bureaucratic sleight of hand trick. The Faculty Senate is currently conducting a survey of collegialty and culture and leadership at UVA, let's see what the anonymous results tell us. UVA selects its leaders for the wrong reasons, compliance and control money raising, and carpet sweeping.

The University is becoming a corporatized plantation and I hope McNair stays on that story. No student voice, no staff voice (or union), no faculty voice-No workplace democracy . I hope McNair stays on that angle. The hype about living in Charlottesville and the reputation of Monticello and the University ignore the legacy of slavery and racism. Chrlottesville City suffers from the same institutional culture pathology as the University. The City Council pretends to be liberal while they kow tow to the Chamber of Commerce and waste their time on symbolic issues rather than dealing with classicism and racism and poverty. No minority representation on Council?

People approach me and say oh UVA the home of neoliberalism and neconservatism (Tina Fey as the model graduate because she has done so well for herself financially-where are the examples of graduates who serve the public?) The Student body not supporting the living wage campaign, what's up with that? The Culture of White privelge, booz and sexual assault, what's up with that? The statues of white men oprressing native american's, where's the monument to the legacy of slavery and raciual reconciliation?

I hope McNair stays focused on the oppresive nature of the 5 billion dollar plantation/corporation the University has become. The new movie on bullying at public schools needs to include higher education and the adults who keep the sytem of bullying going. Keep it up Dave-this is what journalism is all about!

I am also a home towner and a graduate of UVa. I have also been a loyal follower of the Hook. However, Dave McNair's vicious, biased, obsessiveness with Ted Genoways was unprecedented. Dave took it upon himself to try Mr. Genoways in his court of law. Is it because of his personal, close connection with the Jacquith family? Is there not enough news in Charlottesville? What happened to ethics in journalism and presenting equal perspectives? Dave, what will you find to write about now? What person will you torture next? Do you even know Ted Genoways or Don Starsia? If you did, you'd find them to be great men. Hopefully, you'll relocate soon. I think there's opening for your kind of journalism elsewhere. I think you need a new profession.

@ Mary: Ted Genoways might be a swell guy at backyard barbecues and greatly loved by his dog, but that has no bearing on his workplace behavior, which was egregious by any known standard. That's the issue here, and if you read the VQR email narrative published in The Hook a few months (?) ago, you know there's little disputing that fact. I applaud Dave McNair for relentlessly hammering away at a story that the University did everything it could to paper over. Genoways drove the bus off the road with catastrophic results, and he deserves to be pulled out from behind the wheel, permanently. After all, without the "vicious, biased, obsessiveness" of a couple of journalists, Richard Nixon would have been sitting pretty for a whole lot longer than he was.

Word Factory, I agree with you. UVa sweeps things under the rug, continually. David McNair, an excellent reporter, has followed the VQR under rungs, through sham audits, to very telling emails. This long story has been told with veracity by McNair and I know a lot of us are grateful. Genoways should have been gone long ago, but the University turned a blind eye. McNair did not and good for him.

With a budget of nearly $1,000,000 and just about a thousand subscribers (so that each subscription costs UVA roughly a mind-boggling $1000 for a $32 subscription!) and not much chance those numbers will improve, I think we're seeing an effort by UVA to get Genoways to move on (his own decision, hah!), and in another year we'll see VQR closed down--it is not financially sustainable--not even with an eager all-new staff. Sorry Staige. Sorry Charlotte. But the magazine you worked so hard on is headed down the tubes, regardless of how Tom Skalak may huff and puff and insist otherwise. Ted Genoways reeled him in with delusional talk about how great VQR could be. Wonder how he feels now about being left with a moribund magazine. Spin works for only so long.

@Mary, you are so full of yourself your eyeballs are brown. I can not find where Dave McNair mentioned Starsia.

@Mary - I have followed this story closely and am unaware of any factual errors in Mr. NcNair's reporting . Have you found any ? I appreciate the Hook's coverage which I found far more informative and in depth, but not biased, than other media . All towns should be so lucky to have such a fine example of journalism as is the Hook.

@Cville Native, your quote of my comment has nothing to do with your response of "And why shouldn't Universities and Colleges have police blotters reported to them?" Are you saying that police were aware of the couple's beating each other. Did he or she report it? If neither, then how could it have ended up on the police blotter?
" Prevent them from registering if they do not return an overdue library book but let them register if they threaten a police officer in another area or rape someone elsewhere?" Are you suggesting that people that have police reports should not be allowed to attend college even if it is part of their rehabilitation program? BTW, I did not read that anyone was raped in this affair. If it happened, I'm sure Huguely would have been enrolled by taking online courses while in jail. UVA could not be accused of sweeping that under the rug.

@Mary -- Dave didn't mention Starsia. I did as another example of what the UVA blind eye let happen. Same issue. Ignore the problems and hope they'll go away.

When you stick your head in the sand, what's up in the air?

Is it because of his personal, close connection with the Jacquith family?

You completely made that up. To my knowledge, I've only met Dave McNair twice, ever (one of those times in passing, on the Downtown Mall). Nobody who is related to me has ever uttered his name in my presence and, as best as I know, none of them are acquainted with him or have ever met him. You should be ashamed of yourself.

@Mary - It's a bit extreme to be so irritated by Dave McNair's reporting that you hope he leaves town. If it's that upsetting to you just don't read it. I found the Hook's reporting on the VQR story to be extremely warranted as there was no other outlet in Charlottesville that chose to follow the story. In a town so influenced by The University I am grateful for reporters like McNair who aren't beholden to UVa. Thank you for the coverage.

@Brendan: Part of my point is exactly what you've said -- that we don't hear conversations about the content of VQR. But perhaps if local publications like the Hook actually delved into the reasons for the magazine's accolades, we might begin to hear some of those conversations -- they don't begin until someone starts them. I think it's tough to compare VQR to either the Iowa Review or the Atlantic. The former is, yes, a traditional lit magazine, but a fairly conservative one at best. It publishes good work, for the most part, but does its job holding up the poetic and literary establishment very well. The Atlantic Monthly is published, well, monthly. It can be in more regular communication with its readers, respond with more frequency and timeliness to topics and has certainly had a longer amount of time to establish itself as a mainstay. VQR has tradition behind it, but has only a little more than 5 years in its current incarnation.

I was in no way trying to say that Genoways is solely responsible for the magazine's rebirth, but yes, he did have something to do with it. My frustration that led to commenting had more to do with the fact that local media like The Hook is in a position to also be supportive of local efforts that receive national attention, not just to be the megaphone for sensationalist stories that also achieve national notice. I'd grown weary of how any small detail having to do with Genoways (or even VQR in general) sparked a complete rehash of the controversy, always making sure that readers never doubted McNair's contempt for Genoways. It started to feel personal, rather than newsworthy.

People are perfectly entitled to expect more from Genoways or VQR or UVA than they've offered in this context, just as I expect more from The Hook than sensationalism. At the height of state legislative controversies this session, for example, The Hook ran zero stories related to what was happening at the General Assembly (even despite the good journalistic fortune that our local rep is the House Minority Leader). But of course, around 8-10 of the top stories on this site at that point were all about the Huguely trial. I'm starting to view The Hook with the same skepticism and exasperation as I do Nancy Grace and CourtTV. I don't expect a lot from a local magazine, but I expect more than that.