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28 Apr

WSJ Magazine Editor Kristina O’Neill Steps Down

Kristina O’Neill, the editor in chief of WSJ, the Wall Street Journal’s magazine insert, revealed Thursday morning that she’s going to depart this summer. She didn’t reveal her future plans.

O’Neill joined the magazine in 2012, overseeing its relaunch as a culture and fashion title available to Journal subscribers. She was the third editor of the magazine, which launched in 2008 as a part of Rupert Murdoch’s effort to rework the Journal right into a national general-interest publication — and compete directly with The Recent York Times. O’Neill introduced a latest logo (within the Journal’s austere Escrow font), and set about recruiting bold-faced names to moonlight as columnists (Karl Lagerfeld, Dwyane Wade, Marina Abramovic were rendered in trademark Journal stipple hedcuts).

More recently, O’Neill and Style news editor Sarah Ball oversaw the addition of a totally staffed style news desk created to cover breaking industry news.

“The great thing about long-lead magazine making is that we form of have time,” O’Neill told WWD during an interview last fall marking her decade on the title, which appears in print nine times a yr. “We work far upfront and all the things may be very beautifully, thoughtfully curated. But we were sort of missing that nimbleness. The goal was to create a desk that would react more quickly to things and canopy things within the here and now.”

She also took over the choice and planning for the magazine’s annual Innovator Awards, which included multiple cover runs and a star-studded event in Manhattan. Last yr’s awards honored Brazilian singer Anitta, Saint Laurent creative director Anthony Vaccarello, architect Jeanne Gang, artist Jenny Holzer, product designer Jony Ive, actors and producers Margot Robbie and Maya Rudolph and World Central Kitchen and its founder José Andrés.

It’s unclear why O’Neill is leaving. The news was conveyed to WSJ staffers in a Thursday morning email from WSJ editor in chief Emma Tucker.

“From unmatched editorial to attracting latest advertisers and revenue growth via partnerships with powerhouse brands, Kristina had a direct hand within the Journal’s digital expansion and latest audience engagement, broadening our lens on the intersection of fashion, lifestyle and business,” wrote Tucker.

In the identical email, Robert Thomson, chief executive officer of WSJ parent News Corp., lauded O’Neill’s transformation of “the magazine into a worldwide aesthetics icon and her profound influence will proceed to resonate inside the WSJ and much beyond.”

A representative for the WSJ didn’t reply to a questions on O’Neill’s possible successor or whether there might be additional staff departures.

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