After more than a decade, Bruce Allar is stepping down as editor-in-chief of Louisville Magazine effective Feb. 18 to take over the planning duties at the International Pizza Expo. Earlier today, the magazine posted a listing to fill the position that includes overseeing the six member editorial staff and several freelance writers.
“Anytime you lose a key person, somebody who has been here for 10 years and has done what I think is a stellar job, it is a big loss,” says Dan Crutcher, publisher of Louisville Magazine. “But having said that I do think we can find someone else who can do the job and once we do I think we’ll be back on track. We have a lot of experience on the editorial staff.”
Founded in 1950 by the Louisville Chamber of Commerce, the award-winning monthly magazine covers business and culture in the city with a circulation of about 25,000 readers. In 1993, the chamber of commerce sold the magazine to Crutcher and has been independent from the city ever since.
Born in Minneapolis, Allar moved to Louisville in the mid-1980s as a reporter for The Louisville Times, which was the city’s afternoon edition newspaper. After the Gannett Co. Inc. shut down the newspaper in 1986, he worked as a freelancer before becoming associate editor at Louisville Magazine.
Allar left that post in the mid-1990s to become editor of Pizza Today magazine, but returned as editor in 2000 where he wrote one of the more incisive editorial columns in local media.
Last summer, for instance, he blasted the $4.1 billion Ohio River Bridges Project in a piece that questioned the necessity of the behemoth public works project.
How much, I wonder, should we sacrifice in our quest for easier, faster and, one would assume, more automobile and truck traffic through our city? It’s not just the (gulp) $4.1 billion. Or the possibility that we may be forced to extract tolls from drivers on already existing bridges, as well as the new ones, to have a chance to pay for the work.
My question goes beyond the disruptions to commuters, residents and businesses in the path of construction — even beyond what all of this concrete and steel will do to the “livability” quotient of our small town, big city.
It’s even more basic: If we build it, will they come?