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Deseret News appoints new editor, publisher after 16-month vacancy

Media » The changes are effective immediately.

First Published Dec 20 2011 05:18 pm • Last Updated Mar 03 2012 11:37 pm

The Deseret News has re-established the positions of publisher and editor of the newspapers, titles that had been vacant since August 2010 when former publisher Jim Wall and former editor Joe Cannon stepped down amid a major restructuring of the LDS Church-owned newspaper.

Paul Edwards, who has edited the paper’s editorial and faith pages since September 2010, took on the additional titles of editor and executive vice president, News CEO Clark Gilbert said Tuesday.

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As part of his duties, Edwards will be in charge of the new national edition of the News, which is available as a Sunday insert in the St. George Spectrum and the Logan Herald Journal, and will be available elsewhere shortly, Gilbert said.

Edwards will continue to lead the paper’s enterprise reporting team, which produces content for the national and local editions.

Chris Lee, who has been the paper’s vice president of digital content, was elevated to publisher and executive vice president.

Rick Hall, who has served as managing editor since 1998, was named editor of the Utah edition and executive vice president. In Utah, the News is second only to The Salt Lake Tribune in daily circulation.

The changes are effective immediately.

Gilbert will continue as CEO and president of the paper, and of Deseret Digital Media, which distributes news and information via the Web. He declined on Tuesday to characterize the management moves as a restructuring.

"In many ways, we’ve been working this way for over six months. This is really a promotion and extension of our current strategy, not a change, per se. This is a recognition that we are both a local and a national newspaper," Gilbert said.

Before Edwards joined the News, he was executive vice president and provost at Southern Virginia University. He has a law degree and a doctorate in jurisprudence from the University of California at Berkeley.

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Lee was chairman and CEO at Heritage Makers, a Provo-based provider of Web-to-print photographs, before coming to the News in June 2010. He has a master of business administration from Harvard University.

Hall has been at the News since 1974, when he was hired as a copy boy.


Twitter: @sltribpaul

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