The journalists who made the news in 2007 - Press Gazette

The journalists who made the news in 2007

The national editors

This year was as unsually uncertain one for national newspaper editors with five of the top jobs changing over the course of the year.

First to go was former News International golden boy Andy Coulson who fell on his sword on 26 January as News of the World Royals reporter Clive Goodman was jailed for tapping phone messages of, among others, aides of the Royal Family.

Coulson was from the same News International cohort as Rebekah Wade and Piers Morgan and succeeded Wade as NoW editor in 2003.

Coulson, then 38, was immediately succeeded by Fleet Street veteran Colin Myler.

Myler, 55, is a former editor of the Daily and Sunday Mirror who since 2001 has been managing editor of the News Corp owned New York Post.

Next to go was Patience Wheatcroft who resigned in September after a year and half as editor of the Sunday Telegraph. Wheatcroft, 55, was formerly business and City editor of The Times. Her predecessor, Sarah Sands, was herself ousted after just nine months in the job.

Wheatcroft’s departure was prompted by ‘stretegic differences’over the involvement of Sunday Telegraph staff in a seven-day web operation. She was replaced by Daily Telegraph deputy editor Ian MacGregor who now reports to Will Lewis, who was made editor-in-chief across the titles.

Evidence of what Wheatcroft’s strategic differences may have been came in November when the Telegraph Group merged the business desk operations on the Daily and Sunday titles.

Flamboyant Sport Newspapers editor-in-chief Tony Livesey quit in August to concentrate on his broadcasting career. Both the Daily and Sunday titles have heamorraged sales throughout the year and are currently looking at moving in a new direction.

Another editor to apparently pay the price of falling sales was People boss Mark Thomas who left in November after four and half years at the flagging Sunday red-top. A successor has yet to be appointed.

This month saw changes at The Times and The Observer. Robert Thomson was rewarded for a successful five-year run at The Times, in which he has boosted sales and taken it tabloid without dumbing down, by being made publisher of Dow Jones and the two-million selling Wall Street Journal.

New editor James Harding, 38, like Thomson before him, has a financial journalism background after previously being business and City editor.

Hanging up his BlackBerry at the end of this year is Observer editor Roger Alton who is handing over to his deputy John Mulholland. Alton’s nine years in the top job at the Observer were crowned last year when he picked up the British Press Awards Newspaper of the Year prize. Unlike sister paper The Guardian, the Observer has held on to its post-Berliner redesign sales boost of two years ago.

Like Wheatcroft, Alton’s departure is understood to have been partly linked to upheavels planned next year as The Guardian and Observer move towards an integrated seven-day news operation.

The regional editors

In June, Swindon Advertiser’s Mark Waldron became editor of the Portsmouth News, which was left without an editor for eight moths following the departure of Mike Gilson to edit The Scotsman. During Waldron’s editorship, the ‘Evening’was dropped from the masthead when the paper was made available throughout the day.

Waldron started his career on the Aldershot News in 1987 before moving to the Hull Daily Mail. In 2002, he joined the South Wales Echo as deputy editor before later becoming editor.

South Wales Echo editor Richard Williams stepped down in October. He became editor in 2005 and oversaw the redesign of the Echo’s Saturday paper, the launch of Live It! supplement and has led a number of major campaigns.

Cambridge Evening News deputy editor James Foster became editor of the Norwich Evening News in August this year, following the departure of David Bourn who left after he was arrested on suspicion of assault. In the same month Southern Daily Echo deputy editor Dave King was named editor of the Swindon Advertiser, replacing Mark Waldron.

The magazine editors

Jane Johnson, who launched Emap’s Closer and went on to overhaul its weekly stablemate First, left the world of magazines to become deputy editor of the News of the World, as well as editorial director of their magazine suppliment, Sunday.

Johnson was replaced at Emap by Jane Ennis, former editor of IPC’s Now. Ennis left Now after 10 years on the title last December and was replaced in March this year by Helen Johnston – who had been poached from Emap’s New Woman. Johnston’s time at Now was shortlived, however, as she handed her notice in last week after just seven months to work seven months to work on a secret start-up project.

Sara Cremer, editor of Haymarket’s glossy monthly Eve, left this September to become editorial director of customer publisher Redwood. Cremer, who has been editor of the Haymarket-owned women’s monthly for almost three years, will be replaced in January by former OK! editor Nic McCarthy.

The men’s market saw a shake up in leadership this year, with former Wallpaper* editor Jeremy Langmead taking over Natmags’ Esquire and giving it an award-winning relaunch.

Former Sunday Times interviewer Giles Hattersley was surprise candidate to take over Emap’s men’s monthly, Arena.

Derek Harbourd, editor of men’s monthly Maxim, wasn’t the only staff member to leave this year. The sale of Dennis’ American arm left the title unable to export and missing out on a chunk of it’s circulation, and features editor Martin Robinson and deputy editor Terri White were two others that left. Michael Donlevy, formerly deputy editor of Maxim’s stablemate Men’s Fitness, has taken the helm at Maxim, which is set for a redesign next year.

The B2B editors

Emap’s Broadcast deputy editor, Lisa Campbell, moved up to editor in February.

Architects’ Journal editor Isabel Allen returned to architecture after 11 years in publishing. Ex-Icon deputy editor Kieran Long replaced her.

Sarah Longbottom left Retail Newsagent in June to take the helm at Travel Weekly.

Martin Talbot left CMPi’s Music Week for the newly created role of managing director of the Official Charts Company. A successor has yet to be appointed.

Haymarket’s Marketing editor Craig Smith stepped down, with deputy editor Lucy Barrett taking the editor’s chair.

Perodicals Publishers Association CEO Ian Lockes is to stand down in the new year. Ruth Brownlee was appointed the director of the UK’s Association of Online Publishers.

Emap chief executive Tom Moloney resigned, parting with the company after 26 years. Alun Cathcart took over, but will step down once the proposed sale of the consumer and radio divisions to Bauer is finalised, expected in January.

The broadcasters

The 2,500 job cuts at the BBC was preceded by a number of high-profile defections. Natasha Kaplinsky left the BBC to become Five News presenter and is set to replace Kirsty Young, who joins Crimewatch, replacing Nick Ross.

Dermot Murnaghan joined Sky News and Moira Stuart left BBC News after a 34-year career, sparking claims of ageism at the corporation.

David Kermode joined Five News as editor, leaving BBC Breakfast, while Mark Popesecu, editor of BBC One O’Clock news was one of the first to take voluntary redundancy in the latest round of cuts.

BBC controller Peter Fincham resigned in October over the fall out over the BBC’s misleading press clip of the documentary on the Queen.

Jay Hunt was announced as the new BBC One controller – three months after joining Five as director of programmes.

Carolyn Quinn left Today, with Evan Davis announced as her replacement.

BBC London presenter Matt Barbet joined Five News.

Alan Johnston announced his intention to start work again at the BBC World Service in Bush House in the new year.

Michael Grade joined ITV as executive chairman in January. ITV confirmed that News at Ten will return to ITV1 next year with Sir Trevor McDonald. The editor of ITV1’s Evening News, Alex Chandler, will oversee the revived programme and Julie Etchingham, who joined ITV after five years with Sky News, will be a regular presenter. ITV News made Cristina Nicolotti-Squires the editor of its lunchtime ITV1 news programme. The head of news at ITV Central, Dan Barton, is to leave in the new year to become head of PR and communications at Stoke-on-Trent City Council.

Kylie Morris took over the presenting job at More4 News from Sarah Smith, who became Washington correspondent for Channel 4 News in May.

The party

The journalism networking event of the year was Schmooze and Booze, run by Daily Mail sub-editor Helen Lewis.

From humble beginnings in August last year at the Commercial Tavern in London’s East End, featuring 40 people, the event’s reputation grew and grew more than 250 people began turning up each month to events across the city, from swish bars in Chelsea and St Paul’s to the Frontline Club in Paddington.

Journalists from all sectors and walks of life have been spotted at the events and many a business card and rumour swapped over a pint.

Press Gazette is delighted to have been chosen as the official media partner for Schmooze and Booze for 2008 so look in the magazine and on for information on upcoming events.

The missed

The past year has seen some of Fleet Street’s greatest file their last copy. In July, the only journalist to have edited two national newspapers twice – Richard Stott – died aged 63 from pancreatic cancer. Stott was twice editor of both the Daily Mirror and The People and once held five editorships in 12 years – believed to be a record.

Sports journalist and Press Gazette newspaper hall of fame member Ian Wooldridge died in March, aged 75. Wooldridge, who in 2005 was named as one of the 40 most influential journalistic figures of the past 40 years, died peacefully after a long battle with cancer.

Legendary Daily Mail gossip columnist Nigel Dempster died in July after a long illness. Dempster, who was 65, was credited with creating the modern newspaper gossip column.

Former Daily Telegraph editor and Conservative cabinet minister Lord Bill Deedes died in November at the age of 94, after an incredible 76-year journalistic career.