The Chicago Tribune promoted Jane Hirt, the editor of its free daily tabloid Red Eye, to managing editor Thursday as part of an overhaul of the paper's newsroom leaders under new editor Gerould Kern.
James Warren, the managing editor/features, former Washington bureau chief and longtime labor reporter at the Tribune and Chicago Sun-Times, is leaving the paper, according to Michael Oneal's report in the Tribune.
Bill Adee, associate managing editor for innovation, was named editor of digital media. Joycelyn Winnecke, associate managing editor for national news, assumes the newly created position of associate editor in charge of change management projects, Oneal reports, while Kerry Luft, former associate managing editor for foreign news, takes on the consolidated job of associate managing editor/foreign & national, handling the paper's foreign and national reporting teams.
In a release announcing the changes, Kern said of Hirt:
"Jane has the experience and credentials to move our newsroom toward the future," Kern said Gerould [sic]. "At RedEye, she has demonstrated a true understanding of the newspaper's audience, and I'm happy that she will bring that expertise to the Chicago Tribune and its readers."
More on Hirt from the company's release:
Before joining RedEye, Hirt was the Tribune's foreign / national news editor. Other assignments during her 15 years at the Tribune have included the position of foreign / national copy desk chief and tours of duty on the sports and national copy desks. Hirt graduated from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 1989 with a bachelor's degree in journalism
Oneal acknowledged some of the criticism of Red Eye and the significance of Kern naming its editor to a top management post at the Tribune.
Red Eye, which has made its mark by highlighting celebrity news and other light fare, has been less of a critical success among the news establishment -- sometimes maligned as Exhibit A for those who complain that the newspaper industry is dumbing down to attract readers.
But Kern said Red Eye's success is evidence of Hirt's creativity and strength as an editor.
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