James Bennet Departs The Atlantic
Longtime president and editor-in-chief joins New York Times as editorial page director; Bob Cohn named sole president of The Atlantic.
One week after Atlantic Media named COO Michael Finnegan its first president since 2013, the company has announced another leadership change.
James Bennet, president and editor-in-chief of The Atlantic, will leave the company to take over as editorial page director for the New York Times, Atlantic Media chairman David Bradley announced today.
Bob Cohn, who has served as co-president of The Atlantic alongside Bennet for the past two years, will take over as sole president while the company seeks a new editor-in-chief for its flagship magazine.
In a staff memo this morning, Bradley wrote to employees, "It is true that it took 100 interviews for me to find James Bennet. What I really found was not one in a hundred, but one in a million. James Bennet recovered The Atlantic. More personal, James Bennet recovered my ownership of The Atlantic."
Bennet returns to the New York Times after spending ten years Atlantic Media, where he is largely credited with ushering the 159-year-old flagship brand into the digital age. The magazine's website, TheAtlantic.com, reached a high of more than 31.5 million unique monthly visitors at the end of 2015, according to the company, shattering its own records. Last month, The Atlantic was named Magazine of the Year at the 2016 National Magazine Awards for Print and Digital Media.
"Under James's decade of leadership, The Atlantic has reinvented itself for the modern media age," said Cohn in a statement. "He safeguarded the future of our 159-year-old magazine by insisting we express its mission and heritage in the most contemporary ways, on any and (almost) all platforms that our audience uses."
Bennet, 49, previously served as Jerusalem bureau chief and White House correspondent, among other positions, at the New York Times before joining Atlantic Media in 2006.