"It's time to pursue other opportunities," Grow quips. "Many a VP has left our company in pursuit of other opportunities, and now it's moving down the ranks."
Grow was one of the few opinion scribes in town who left his desk for reasons other than getting another Mr. Pibb. He also jokes that he came cheap: "You could do this, too, if you lower your expectations and have low salary demands."
Modesty aside, Grow clearly placed high demands on his own work. He was the rare marquee name around town who wasn't above sweating it out at jam-packed community meetings in church basements. That humility apparently carried over in the newsroom.
"He's the guy who always makes sure he isn't 'getting in your way' when he does a column on your beat," testifies reporter Rochelle Olson. "He's also 'suggested' many stories to me that ended up on A1. So on a professional level, he's a prince, but he's the same on a personal level."
As for the future, Grow remains uncertain. "My kids—I have two grown children—will be laughing at me, because I was always on their ass to get a job with great benefits," he says. "One thing I won't do: I don't think I'll be freelancing. This has got to be the most glutted freelance market in the country." —G.R. Anderson Jr.