Local Media Association announced today that Jay Small, President of Cordillera Digital, will become its new Chief Innovation Officer. LMA’s current Chief Innovation Officer, Jed Williams, has been promoted to Chief Strategy Officer.
Small currently leads the digital business unit for Cordillera Communications, a 14-station TV broadcasting group. In this role, he oversees 60 corporate and station employees. Since he joined Cordillera in 2010, the digital division grew revenue by more than 4 times. Small will start his new position after completion of Cordillera’s sale to The E.W. Scripps Co. and Quincy Media, Inc.; he will consult for LMA until that time.
Williams joined LMA in November 2016 as the organization’s first Chief Innovation Officer. During his two-plus years in that role, he has made a significant impact including developing and leading the successful Chief Digital Club program, which now has more than 70 members. He also greatly expanded LMA’s Innovation Mission program with the addition of three regional trips conducted each year. To date, more than 70 media executives have participated in these unique experiences.
Williams will remain strategically involved in the CDC groups and Innovation Missions as part of his new role.
“We are thrilled to welcome Jay Small to the LMA team,” said Nancy Lane, President. “We have always viewed him as one of the most innovative people in our industry and we are excited to add his expertise to our team. At the same time, we are also pleased to promote Jed into the newly-created role of Chief Strategy Officer. In this position, he will oversee the execution of the LMA strategic plan that calls for the launch of a Business Model Accelerator that will sustain local journalism. He’ll also stay involved in LMA core and work with Jay and me to continue to grow that vital part of our business.”
“No one does more than LMA to advance the causes of local media and journalism, in all forms,” Small said. “I am grateful for and inspired by the chance to join my friends in this visionary, hard-working organization and help chart a course for the future of local media.”
The LMA board of directors and staff are meeting in St Augustine, Fla., this week to finalize the plans for the Business Model Accelerator. The first project, fully funded, is expected to be announced in the coming weeks.
“There is nothing more vital for our industry than discovering, developing, and executing on sustainable revenue models that enable a thriving future for journalism,” said Williams. “My passion runs deep for the Business Model Accelerator that LMA is launching. I relish the opportunity and responsibility to lead its growth.”
LMA is growing rapidly. In October, the hire of Emilie Lutostanski as Director of the Local News Resource Center was announced. This position is funded by the Facebook Journalism Project. Already Emilie has launched a Social Media Club with 24-plus executives participating, and she will soon publish her first case study report.
Next week LMA, along with the Local Media Consortium, will announce the hire of a branded content project manager who will oversee a two-year program designed to flesh out business models in this promising area of our business. And soon, a fundraiser will be added to the team to help secure funding for the Accelerator.