The Texas Tribune on Thursday named Sewell Chan, a prime editor at The Los Angeles Occasions, as its new editor in chief.
Mr. Chan, 43, is the editorial web page editor at The Los Angeles Occasions, overseeing its editorial board and opinion part. He’ll transfer to Austin, the place The Tribune is predicated, in September and begin Oct. 18.
“The choice was actually one concerning the potential and alternative in working at a really completely different sort of establishment in a really completely different state and, sure, the prospect to steer a company, which I feel can be actually thrilling,” Mr. Chan mentioned in an interview.
4 months in the past, two of The Tribune’s leaders — the editorial director, Stacy-Marie Ishmael, and the chief product officer, Millie Tran — resigned after a 12 months on the job. Their choices to go away got here as a shock to The Tribune’s chief govt, Evan Smith.
Mr. Chan, a local of New York Metropolis, began his profession at The Washington Put up. In 2004, he joined The New York Occasions, the place he labored as a metro reporter, Washington correspondent, deputy opinion editor and worldwide information editor.
He joined The Los Angeles Occasions as a deputy managing editor in 2018 and have become the editorial web page editor final 12 months. On his watch, Robert Greene received a Pulitzer Prize for a sequence of editorials on the legal justice system. Mr. Chan was one of many inside candidates to develop into the newsroom chief of The Los Angeles Occasions after its govt editor, Norman Pearlstine, departed final 12 months. The job went to Kevin Merida in Could.
The Tribune, a nonprofit digital publication recognized for its rigorous protection of politics and policymaking within the Lone Star State, was began in 2009. Mr. Chan mentioned he was drawn to its civic mission and base of help “throughout political divides, geographical divides, throughout completely different racial and ethnic communities.” He added that The Tribune’s nonprofit construction was “a significant a part of the answer” for a information media trade struggling to search out sustainable streams of income.
“I’m down on chains and on newspapers owned by personal fairness or hedge funds, as a result of I feel that native funding, native dedication to those regional information manufacturers is so essential to the mission and in addition to gaining and regaining the belief of readers,” he mentioned.
Mr. Chan mentioned The Tribune would stay an essential publication into the 2022 midterm elections and 2024 presidential election.
“Each main pressure in America, from local weather to know-how to regulation to the way forward for voting rights and reproductive rights, all of it converges in Texas,” he mentioned.
Mr. Smith, who helped discovered The Tribune after 20 years at Texas Month-to-month, mentioned in an interview that Mr. Chan had “a rare sense of what the information is and must be.”
“He’s an awfully light and empathetic and collaborative individual, and after a 12 months and a half of stories that has had a horrible toll on all of us, I feel we will all profit from being in restoration mode, and I feel Sewell’s persona is ideally suited to that,” Mr. Smith mentioned.
Mr. Smith added that The Tribune had greater than 4 million distinctive guests to its website on common this 12 months, greater than double the viewers earlier than the pandemic.