Eleanor Randolph passes the torch

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Eleanor Randolph. ()
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Eleanor Randolph, a long-standing member of The New York Times Editorial Board, is stepping down from her full-time role at the paper, Capital has learned. And City Hall is getting a new editorial writer as a result.

Randolph, a veteran newswoman who joined the editorial board in 1998, has most recently been focusing on Albany and City Hall, serving primarily as the paper of record's editorial writer covering the administration of Mayor Michael Bloomberg. 

Randolph is relinquishing her staff position in order to concentrate on her forthcoming Bloomberg biography, which is to be published by Simon & Schuster. She'll continue to pen editorials on Albany (as well as occasionally opining on matters related to New Jersey, the media and other miscellaneous topics) in a part-time capacity, and her schedule at the Times will be reduced from five days a week to two.

"I'm basically old enough to retire," said Randolph, who is 70, when we reached her for comment Monday afternoon. "But I'll still be working."

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Lawrence Downes, meanwhile, who's been on the editorial board since 2004 and at the Times since 1993, will cover the administration of Bill de Blasio once the mayor elect takes office. Downes had covered the mayoral campaign, making it a "natural hand-off," said Randolph.

Randolph, who is married to the prominent British foreign correspondent and investigative journalist Peter Pringle, has been working for newspapers since 1968, including stints at The Washington Post and The Los Angeles Times. Her writing also has appeared in Vogue, Esquire and other magazines.