By: E&P Staff
The Wall Street Journal has announced that Marcus Brauchli will succeed Paul Steiger as the newspaper’s managing editor, effective May 15.
Brauchli has been with Dow Jones, the paper’s parent company, since 1984. He worked largely as a foreign correspondent in places like Cambodia, China and the former Soviet Union before becoming a news editor at the Journal in 1999. In September 2003 he was appointed global news editor and he became deputy managing editor in December 2005.
“Marcus Brauchli is a superb journalist, who reported for Dow Jones Newswires and the Journal from more than 20 countries, and as global news editor oversaw Journal coverage from stock-market downturns to the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks,” said the paper’s publisher Gordon Crovitz in a written statement. “More recently, as a deputy managing editor under Mr. Steiger, Mr. Brauchli led the news department in the highly successful Journal redesign that launched earlier this year, giving us great confidence that the Journal in print and online will thrive by continuing to engage readers with distinctive, only-in-the-Journal coverage.”
The New York Times reported this afternoon that Brauchli’s main rival for the job was Dow Jones vice President for news strategy Paul Ingrassia. The Times reported that sources at the Journal said Brauchli “had the overwhelming backing of the newsroom” as well as Steiger’s support.
“Obviously I am disappointed and I support Rich’s and Gordon’s decision,” Ingrassia said through a company spokesman.
Mike Simonton, newspaper analyst at the credit ratings service Fitch Ratings Inc., applauded Brauchli’s appointment, according to The Associated Press: “Having provided oversight for the redesign, he’s obviously very aware of the changing media landscape and the need to meet consumers’ desire to get content on different platforms.”
Brauchli is taking the helm at a pivotal time for the Journal and the newspaper industry at large. Newspapers across the country have been struggling to transition from its reliance on print advertising while growing Internet advertising. While the Journal has been on the forefront — it’s one of the few papers that have successfully charged for online content — it’s still beset with challenges.
Advertising revenue at the Journal is down and management is currently trying to curtail costs. It slashed some job positions, most recently in Canada. Executives are currently hammering through negotiations with union members on a new contract.
Crovitz also praised Steiger, who will become editor at large of the paper before retiring at the end of this year.
“Paul is one of the great leaders in the history of business journalism, and his leadership has resulted in The Wall Street Journal going from strength to strength,” Crovitz said in a statement. “He took the Journal to a four-section newspaper from a two-section newspaper, redesigned the U.S., Asia and Europe editions, launched the critically successful Weekend Edition and helped build the Wall Street Journal Online into the largest subscription news site on the Web. Paul’s impact on the Journal will benefit readers and inspire our newsroom for generations.”
Steiger started at the Journal in 1966, worked for two years at the Journal’s San Francisco bureau, and then spent 15 years at the Los Angeles Times before returning to the paper in 1983, where he has worked since. He was named managing editor at the paper in 1991.
TOP EDITORS AT THE WALL STREET JOURNAL, 1934-2007
A list of the Journal’s top editors, and the date they were named.
April 18, 2007 — Marcus Brauchli
June 6, 1991 — Paul E. Steiger
Sept. 1, 1983 — Norman Pearlstine
Nov. 29, 1977 — Larry O’Donnell
August 4, 1970 — Fred Taylor
Jan. 27, 1970 — Sterling E. Soderling
June 7, 1965 — Ed Cony
Feb. 7 1957 — Warren H. Phillips
Nov. 29, 1954 — Robert Bottorff
March 15, 1950 — Henry Gemmill
1942 — William F. Kerby
February 1941 — Bernard Kilgore
Sept. 4, 1934 — William Henry Grimes