James Gill leaves TP to join The Advocate

James Gill, who has been lampooning Louisiana politicians for more than a quarter of a century, will join The Advocate this week.

Gill’s column will appear on The Advocate’s opinion pages on Thursday and Sunday, beginning this week.

He had been appearing in The Times-Picayune.

“We’re looking forward to having James appear in our newspaper,” said Peter Kovacs, the Advocate’s editor.

“I was privileged to be James’ editor at The Times-Picayune, and the best part of the job was being the first person in Louisiana to read his column.”

“Louisiana has always been fertile ground for a newspaperman, but these are particularly exciting times,” Gill said. “Few other places have the benefit of competing dailies.”

Gill, a native of England, emigrated to the United States in 1977 and arrived in New Orleans two years later.

He joined The Times-Picayune and worked as an editorial writer and editor.

But he found his greatest success when he began writing a regular column in 1985.

For a generation, he authored columns skewering prominent figures, quoting semi-literate memos from a New Orleans school superintendent, referring to hurricane recovery czar Ed Blakely as Dr. Flakely and carrying on a friendly feud with Jefferson Parish Sheriff Harry Lee.

Gill is the author of three books, including “The Lords of Misrule,” which chronicled the bitter dispute over segregated Carnival krewes in 1991 and 1992.

Today’s announcement marks the second time in a week that prominent journalists from The Times-Picayune signed on with The Advocate.

Last week, two Pulitzer prize-winning editors and two reporters left The Times-Picayune to join The Advocate’s growing New Orleans bureau only days after the newspaper was purchased by businessman John Georges.