Tim Yagle, Copy Editor Extraordinaire!

In October 2019, Tim Yagle traveled from the West Coast to spend several days as an Expert in Residence, working with students at The Michigan Daily, as part of the Lipinski Journalism Initiative funded by John and Holly Madigan. He wrote of the experience, and his history with The Daily:

"I was born and raised in Ann Arbor, 2.5 miles from campus and the Big House. I always knew I wanted to go to Michigan. I joined the Daily my sophomore year because I wanted to learn how to become a better, more concise writer and to help keep the campus informed about events and issues important to them so they could make better, more informed decisions for their lives.

The added bonus during my first two years at the Daily was working with superior editors who also were great people, including co-editors in chief Ann Marie Lipinski and Jim Tobin my first year in 1977. I graduated in 1980 with a degree in Political Science. But I've always wanted to give back to the Daily, because after my graduation, I was a news, sports and features reporter for a few daily papers for 13 years before joining the copy desk 26 years ago at one paper here in the Bay Area.

My chance to do something for the Daily came when Neil Chase told me about this opportunity. My time at the Daily in October focused on helping the copy desk, at its request, restructure itself so that it could be more efficient and productive. . 

Working with editor in chief Maya Goldman, and copy chiefs Emily and Silas was a distinct pleasure and privilege for me for two reasons: They are smart students because they are Michigan students, and they showed the care about helping the Daily succeed in its mission as much as the classes of the previous nearly 130  years. They know they have a legacy of excellence to uphold, and they are doing it with intelligence, aplomb, commitment and zeal

While the newsroom looks a little different than it did when I was there, the spirit and the energy remain the same.

Part of what impressed me most working with Maya, Emily and Silas was their passion for what they do, the focus on each story we worked on and their open communication with their copy editors sitting across the table. They also were open to changing their process to make it more efficient and productive.

My role for two nights and one morning was to simply to ask questions on what they want to do and why, and offer suggestions so the editors can make smart decisions to improve their coverage of the campus community specifically and Ann Arbor in general. What worked for my class might not work for their class, and it is up to each class to determine what works best for them."