Star Tribune columnist Nick Coleman's byline disappeared from the paper's pages last month without a note to readers, but his end date at the Star Tribune has finally been set after he decided to take a buyout. Coleman said his newsroom goodbyes Friday, but will officially leave the paper's roster March 13 after more than 3,500 columns and 26 years of writing in the Twin Cities.
Coleman talked to City Pages this afternoon about some of the details of his departure and what's in store for his future post-Strib.
Coleman says he will be considered a Strib employee until March 13 as he uses up accrued vacation time.
"It's not easy, not fun, and not my idea," he says. "This was the best thing for me and my family."
MinnPost's David Brauer posted a piece citing anonymous newsroom sources this morning where he said Coleman signed an agreement with the paper's Opinion/Exchange section to do freelance columns.
Coleman quickly refuted those reports and told CP he did not sign any agreements for future work with the paper. His offer was similar to that given to former columnist Katherine Kersten and the option is still on the table for the future.
Coleman said he never received a phone call from Brauer prior to his publishing of the piece earlier today.
So what's next for the well-known metro voice?
"I'm thinking of getting my chauffeur's license so I can drive limos or maybe raiding chicken coops," he joked. "All you have to do is ride your bike down the street to know where they're at."
In all seriousness, Coleman says he is now working on putting together a new career that will likely involve "some combination of teaching, writing, and journalism."
Coleman taught an opinion writing course at the University of Minnesota in the fall, but he says he doesn't have any definite plans to continue teaching there in the future. He says his buyout includes a non-compete agreement, but he was unable to disclose the details.