Apr 19, 2022 - Economy

The New York Times names Joseph Kahn as next executive editor

Photo: New York Times

The New York Times has named managing editor Joseph Kahn to succeed Dean Baquet as its next executive editor.

Why it matters: Kahn takes the reins at a critical moment in Times history. As the company looks to expand its business, it needs to figure out how to attract a more diverse set of subscribers without alienating its mostly older, progressive audience. Baquet has been leading the paper as its top editor since 2014.

  • The Times is also facing pressure to modernize its culture to address growing competition for talent and new expectations around corporate values.
  • Sources say Kahn has a more traditional leadership style and approach to social media that more closely aligns with the policies introduced in April, urging journalists to pull back from Twitter.

Be smart: Kahn's leadership style is significantly different from Baquet, as Axios has previously noted.

  • Baquet is a high-profile, charismatic newsroom figure who exudes warmth and is a master of people skills.
  • Kahn is a much more low-key and understated figure. He's cerebral and measured and tends to lead from behind.

Catch up quick: Kahn has been the Times' managing editor since 2016, the second-highest position in the newsroom under Baquet. Before that, he served as assistant editor for International and was an international editor and Beijing bureau chief.

  • Having spent many years in China as a correspondent, he speaks fluent Chinese.
  • Kahn is calm, measured, trusted and extremely well respected within the Times. Sources close to him say he likes music, especially classical, and enjoys skiing.

What's next: In a note to staff, Times publisher A.G. Sulzberger said "Joe is planning to send a note later this week sharing some early details about his senior leadership team."

  • Axios has previously reported that the Times is expected to name at least two managing editors under Kahn. Names that have long been speculated include assistant managing editors Marc Lacey and Monica Drake and deputy managing editors Carolyn Ryan, Rebecca Blumenstein and Cliff Levy.
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