After 37 years at Newsweek, Rick Smith has decided that it’s time to “loosen up [his] track shoes,” as he wrote in a memo. Smith is giving up, as he wrote, “most of his titles,” including CEO, held for 16 years. He will remain chairman, offering editorial counsel and nurturing business relationships here and abroad.
Smith also announced that Newsweek president Harold Shain will move from his current position to become president and CEO of Budget Travel, Newsweek sister publication acquired in late 1999. Greg Osberg, current publisher of Newsweek, will take Shain’s place as president.
Taking over for Smith as CEO is Tom Ascheim, currently General Manager of Nickelodeon Television. He previously served as general manager of Nickelodeon Digital Television Networks, launching several TV and online extensions, including Noggin—a commercial-free channel devoted to preschool children’s shows. In his memo, Smith noted that, “while [Ascheim] doesn’t have a traditional magazine resume, he’s…a broad-gauge executive whose experience in building brands and leveraging traditional media assets on the Web will serve Newsweek extremely well.”
Ann McDaniel, a vice president of Newsweek parent company Washington Post, will take on the role of managing director of Newsweek, Inc. Ascheim and Newsweek editor Jon Meacham will report to her.