Amy DuBois Barnett New Editor of Ebony Magazine

BlackAmericaWeb.com | 6/4/2010, 12:11 p.m.

Amy DuBois Barnett, an award-winning media executive and writer, has been named the editor-in-chief of Ebony magazine, replacing Harriette Cole, who had been serving as acting editor-in-chief and creative director.

Barnett, who was the first African-American woman to head a major mainstream consumer magazine, was most recently deputy editor-in-chief of Harper's Bazaar. She also has held several masthead positions at Teen People and worked for the now-defunct Honey Magazine, where she doubled the circulation.

"I am extremely pleased to bring Amy DuBois Barnett on as part of the new leadership team," Linda Johnson Rice, chairman and CEO of Johnson Publishing Co., said in a statement. "She brings with her a wealth of experience, a keen journalistic eye and solid editorial judgment, which will serve well to help redefine the Ebony brand within the ever-changing marketplace."

Barnett is a Brown University graduate and also has a M.F.A degree in creative writing from Columbia University. She is the author of "Get Yours: How to Have Everything You Ever Dreamed of and More," an NAACP Image Award-nominated book for black women.

"Ebony has always represented the best of African-African achievement, society and culture, and I couldn't be more honored to be at the helm as we enhance this icon for the 21st century," Barnett said in a statement. "I'm excited to bring the Ebony brand to multiple media platforms and to engage new audiences who will surely be moved by its resonant, provocative and authoritative perspective on today's African-American experience."

Like many media organizations, Johnson Publishing has struggled with dropping advertising revenues and circulation. Rice has worked on strengthening and rebranding both of the company's landmark publications, Ebony and Jet.

In May 2009, Mira Lowe, was named editor-in-chief of Jet. Lowe, who formerly was managing editor, oversees all aspects of the magazine's editorial content, staffing and evolving direction on both print and digital platforms and launched a makeover of the weekly's look.

Rice also had praise for Cole, who stepped into the interim role after the departure of Brian Monroe, who resigned as editor-in-chief in April 2009.

"Harriette Cole has been an exceptional contributor to Ebony in her role as acting editor-in-chief and creative director in the continuing evolution of the magazine," said Rice. "She was an integral part of landing key covers including First Lady Michelle Obama, Oscar award nominee Gabourey Sidibe and musical icon Prince. We wish her well in her future endeavors."