E&P Names Julia Wallace 2005 'Editor of the Year'

By: Mark Fitzgerald Editor & Publisher has named Julia Wallace of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution 'Editor of the Year' for bringing the passion, discipline, and top newsroom talent that has transformed Dixie's most storied daily into a newspaper for an utterly changed Southern metropolis.

"In sprawling, inchoate Atlanta, Wallace is using a combination of old-fashioned watchdog journalism, new-fangled packaging and design, and a think-global-write-Atlanta philosophy," E&P's February cover story, published Monday, says. "Her goal: to construct a newspaper that can prevail in a market already roiled by the economic and demographic upheaval that is likely to be the future for many other big-city dailies."

The AJC (as nearly everyone there seems to call it) was also one of the few major metros to show a healthy circulation hike in the latest ABC report.

During the past year, Wallace's paper was lauded for its journalism within Georgia and from Iraq, where embedded military-affairs reporter Ron Martz provided exceptional coverage.

"We have all the elements of greatness here, and the number one thing that can make it or screw it up is an editor, and she is making it work, and showing us what great leadership can do," says Hank Klibanoff, the AJC managing editor/news who was recruited by Wallace from The Philadelphia Inquirer.

Under Wallace's leadership, the AJC, which is owned by Cox, has begun zoning by lifestyle in addition to publishing traditional geographic editions. Seeking to establish a "continually learning newsroom," Wallace has steadily increased the commitment to ongoing training to the point that this year every newsroom employee will receive at least 20 hours of training and every editor 30 hours.

In 2002, Wallace was named the first woman editor of The AJC, where she once worked as an intern. She returned to the AJC as managing editor in 2001 after two years in that role at the Arizona Republic.

The complete Editor of the Year cover story can be found in the February print edition, which will be posted online for subscribers Monday afternoon.


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