Jim Warren, Former 'Chicago Tribune' M.E., Named 'Reader' Publisher

By: E&P Staff James Warren -- the former Washington bureau chief who became the Chicago Tribune's co-managing editor before leaving in a 2008 downsizing -- is the new president and publisher of the Chicago Reader, Creative Loafing interim CEO Richard Gilbert announced late Tuesday.

The appointment of Warren, 56, is effective Nov. 2. The position had been unfilled since July, when Kirk MacDonald, who had also been Creative Loafing's COO, left the post in the recent ownership change.

"The appointment of Jim Warren as The Reader's publisher says clearly both internally and to this newspaper's many loyal readers that compelling and provocative journalism remains the paper's overarching mission," Gilbert said in an announcement posted on the alternative weekly's Web site.

"While Jim Warren's experience has largely been in mainstream media companies such as the Tribune and the Chicago Sun Times, he has a well-deserved reputation as an independent thinker who regularly challenges the establishment including many in his own profession," Gilbert added. "To honestly confront and provoke in order to bring readers the truth has been a foundation of The Reader's success since its beginning almost four decades ago."

New York City native Warren began his career at the Newark Star-Ledger, before joining the Chicago Sun-Times in 1977 as a business writer. He joined the Chicago Tribune in 1984, where he was a labor writer, media reporter, and, in 1992, editor of the Tribune's Tempo lifestyle section. He was named chief of the Tribune's D.C. bureau in late 1993, becoming a regular panelist on CNN's political talk show "Capital Gang Sunday".

He returned to Chicago in 2001 as the paper's managing editor for features. Since leaving the Tribune he has written regularly for the Huffington Post and Atlantic Monthly's Web site.

"If I bought into much conventional wisdom concerning high-quality print journalism, I'd be entering the fields of clean energy solar panels or medical robots. But I don't," Warren said in a statement. "Rather, I believe The Reader can be an even greater success if it is provocative, makes those in power squirm and yet is willing to entertain and have fun. I hope I can be of help in renewing and reinventing the print version and finding new audiences on the web."

The Reader distributes about 100,000 printed copies weekly.


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