February 26, 2024
A message from Bob Tarlau
(co-founder of the News Geezers)
The News Geezers began in 2010 - when shortly after entering retirement, I realized while I might not miss my final full time workplace (KTTV Fox 11 where I was a Special Projects Producer), but I would miss the folks I worked with there - and so many of the professionals I encountered along the way since 1965.
Gathering three friends from my early years at KTLA - Joel Tator, the late Michael Conley and Jack Terry - the four of us decided our early enjoyable dinners and lunches should be expanded.
The late Gerry Ruben was next, bringing us to five. The mailing list grew from there and is now closing in on 500.
The News Geezers is totally informal with no dues, no office, and no officers. Credit for the News Geezers' name goes to the late, great Bob Long. Sure the name has had its detractors - mainly women who resent being called Geezers. Bob meant the name to be fun - reflecting the mood of our gatherings. We took a vote on this years ago - and about 95% of those participating that day voted for... News Geezers.
About two-thirds of us are retired. If you are working in the biz - or spent the bulk of your professional life in Southern California - in print (newspapers and magazines), broadcast (radio and TV news), web or public relations - we welcome you! Photojournalists are - of course - included as are the technical people who transformed our news output into print or onto the airwaves. You can see who is involved by going to the "Roster & RSVPs" tab on this website.
For many years, we had lunches quarterly. We reduced that to three times in 2023... and two in 2024.
We saluted L.A.'s TV weather journalists... past and present... during our final 2023 lunch, on Sat Oct 14.
That program was the final full-scale News Geezers lunch and program. We've had a 13-year-run... but I've decided to scale our get togethers back.
I am proudly 80 now... and continue to recover from cancer treatments. The time and effort by all of us involved in producing the programs is considerable... and it is truly time to cut back.
Joel and I plan to have annual low-key News Geezers reunions. No program... other than to catch up with one another.
That's going back to the way the group started in 2010.
And we'll still do it at Victorios. The first one in 2024 is on Sat Mar 9 and the second will be Sat Sep 14. Hope you'll join us.
So that's our story. I never thought the News Geezers would grow as fast or as big as we have. I thank each of you for making this work. As Joel often says: "You know, these lunches just get better every time!"
I am a past chairman (and continue on the board) of the 8 Ball Emergency Fund for Journalists (www.8BallJournalists.org) (formerly the 8 Ball Welfare Foundation), which has helped journalists in temporary financial need for more than 60 years.
If you have questions or comments on the Geezers... or know of someone who would enjoying being a member of our group... kindly write to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thanks for reading this!