Editor Hobart Rowland Talks About Putting Together 'Main Line Salaries' and Debut of 'Philly Happenings'

We love you, dear readers. Really, we do. And we’ll subject ourselves to just about any hardship to please you.

Our annual “Main Line Salaries” feature is a perfect example of what we’ll endure to keep you informed: grueling, often fruitless research, compounded by numerous rejections. Year after year, that’s what senior editor Tara Behan must endure as she tracks down the latest earnings information for an array of Main Liners, from small-business owners, truck drivers and CEOs to cops, bartenders and politicians.

Think about it: Would you want to tell us your salary? It takes a special brand of courage to cough up that sort of personal data—and pose for a photograph, to boot. Through sheer persistence, Behan found a few brave souls willing to do both. Two of them grace our May cover, along with Phillies ace and Newtown Square resident Roy Halladay (whose eight-figure salary is hardly a secret).

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Behan did convince some to talk numbers. The rest she uncovered via public record, corporate documents and other sources (published and unpublished). On that note, we’d like to give props to Lower Merion, which (as far as we can tell) has the most detailed, up-to-date breakdown of township salaries on the Main Line. In fact, thanks to all of our sources—anonymous or otherwise—for their candor.

ALSO IN THIS ISSUE: We planned on taking photos of Urban Outfitters founder Richard Hayne’s controversial Chester County farming enterprise—the subject of Terry Conway’s feature, “Gentleman Farmer (or General Nuisance).” MLT staff photographer Jared Castaldi had been invited to the property by its live-in managers. However, as he was setting up, his hosts made a last-minute call to the Hayne camp, which promptly terminated the shoot. (Can’t say we didn’t see that coming.)

Jon KrauseInstead, Conway’s piece opens with a striking “American Gothic”-style likeness of Hayne by Jon Krause. The Philadelphia-based artist has done some great work for MLT over the years, much of it on tight deadlines. His distinctive illustrations have appeared in Forbes, The Atlantic, New York Times Book Review and Time, among other publications.

In other news, we’re through pretending our readers hate Center City. Hence, the debut of Philly Happenings, our picks for great seasonal fun downtown. And as you make your way to the back of this month’s issue, you might notice a few changes in our restaurant listings. Aside from streamlining our informational icons, we’ve added short write-ups based on recent reviews. It should give you more to go on as you make your dining plans this spring and beyond.

And there are more improvements to come.

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Our Best of the Main Line & Western Suburbs Party is July 25!