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IN DALLAS: 4528 McKINNEY AVE. RICHARDSON: 508 LOCKWOOD FARMERS BRANCH SHOPPING CTR. SW CORNER, VALLEY VIEW IN WACO: 25TH & COLUMBUS IN AUSTIN: 1514 LAVACA 6103 BURNET RD. 1 HALF PRJCE REcoRDs MAGAZINES February. I will make a further financial report to the readers in due time. I wish to say a few words to the hundreds and hundreds of people who have extended themselves in the last year to help the Observer expand. There are many calls for help from really good causes, and the better and more generous citizens are always the ones who get hit by most of them, but oddly, because these very people must choose among the causes, they are sometimes the least appreciated. I know no one owes the Observer the personal decision to put us first among the good causes. To those of you who chose to include the Observer among your causes this year, a simple thank you from all of us. The Observer is a community enterprise that could not have existed all these years except as an expression of a large and general good faith among thousands of Texas progressives. The workers at the Observer, from 1954 into 1978, have always given far more than they could be paid for, but they are repaid also by sharing in the doing of the neglected humanist work of the culture. Into the Observer offices this year, Hightower and Walsh have attracted many more editorial and production volunteers than there have ever been at one time before. To these good people, working for nothing or next to nothing because they wish to participate in high-minded journalism, I would suggest the readers dispatch a silent thought of reciprocal thanks. As the new year begins, uncertainly for the Observer, I also wish to say a few words about the members of the business staff: Cliff Olofson, Alice Embree, Ricky Cruz and, until he had to leave after several years of conscientious service, Joe Espinosa Jr. They also have a share in the doing of the neglected humanist work of the culture, even though the frequently routine nature of their tasks can at times make if difficult to see or remember the fact. Their efforts, too, have been invaluable in bringing us through the year. So, now, in sum, it really is true that the Observer may be standing on a new threshold of range and influence. The next month or two will decide. Surely if we make it as an institution to the higher plateau, the state and in some measure the country will be better in the future. If we do not, we will have to cut back. Your help in the coming weeks is crucial. If you’re in Houston, Fort Worth or another area where we will be having an event, please come. The long-term success of the publication depends on more subscribers, and you can help there too. Perhaps somebody’s been reading your copy of the paperyou could encourage them to subscribe; or maybe you know a library that should be receiving the Observertake out a subscription for it. Lawyers might order the magazine for their offices. Or perhaps you’d like to start off a friend’s new year with the Observer’s blend of populism, politics and reverence for human beings. Whether or no, hang on with us. We’ll keep you posted. R.D Staff notes Much shifting of bodies here at the Observer. Lots of backing and filling in our staff box. First of all, with this issue, Linda Rocawich takes over as associate editor, replacing Laura . Richardson, who is striking out to make a go of it as a freelance. “L.R.” belongs to Linda now; Laura continues with us as a contributor, and will write for the Observer as her workload permits. Linda is a Floridian by birth and a 1970 graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. She is an incorporator and director of Associates for Youth Development, a Tucson-based group of researchers and consultants specializing in delinquency prevention. .'”icki Vaughan and Teresa Acosta join Colin Hunter as assistant editors. All three hold baccalaureate degrees from the University of Texas. Vicki is from Port Arthur and a former staff reporter for The Hays County Citizen in San Marcos. Teresa, a McGregor native, took a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University last May. The turnover in our production “department” puts us in mind of the upkeep for a farmer’s axethe head is replaced, then the handle, then the head again. Somehow, the tool always looks the same, and it gets the chores done. And so with the Observer: the good facelifting work begun by Ray Reece last winter was continued and expanded upon superbly by Lois Rankin through the spring and summer, with ad hoc help from Colin Hunter. Colin inherited the layout job in mid-November and put his own stamp on the magazine with a hand from Kathy Tally, a UT journalism intern. Our luck seems to be holding up. With Colin itching to write and copyedit for us, we had to find yet another designer and production chief. We needn’t have worried. Two talented women are now responsible for getting us to the printerone comes froin our own ranks, and one is an old friend of the Observer. Susan Reid and Susan Lee share the title of production manager. Beth Epstein, an animated film-maker new to Austin, backs them up. J.H., L.W. OBSERVER PARTIES COME BRING YOUR FRIENDS SEE AD, PAGE 24 La Fonda de la Noche Southwestern Cuisine Liberal FoodConservative Prices 2405 Nueces 474-7562 Bob and Sara Roebuck Anchor National Financial Services 1524 E. Anderson Lane, Austin bonds stocks insurance mutual funds optional retirement program THE TEXAS OBSERVER