Susan Goldberg Becomes First Female Editor-in-Chief of National Geographic
Reorganization expands roles for three veteran executives.
The National Geographic Society announced a large structural reorganization of the nonprofit’s media operations April 30 that broadened roles for three veteran executives and newcomer Susan Goldberg who has been promoted as the first female editor-in-chief of National Geographic Magazine.
In its 90-year history, National Geographic has had only nine previous editors-in-chief. Goldberg, now the tenth, has had a fast rise to the top position as she was only recently hired as the executive editor of news and features for the magazine in January.
Goldberg previously worked at Bloomberg News as executive editor of federal, state and local government coverage and prior was the top editor at Cleveland’s The Plain Dealer and the San Jose Mercury News.
“Susan has incredible drive and vision, which makes her a wonderful choice to lead the magazine and daily news through their next iterations,” says Goldberg-predecessor Chris Johns, who will now serve the company in the newly created role of chief content officer.
In his new position, Johns will oversee “the print and digital expression” of National Geographic’s editorial content cross-platform, as well as manage the magazine, news, books, Traveler magazine, maps and all digital content except National Geographic Kids.
Johns’ transition to his new position is coupled with moves for Declan Moore, who makes the shift to chief media officer for the National Geographic Society, and National Geographic Television president Brooke Runnette who expands his duties to include overseeing all video, television and film production for the Society.
“Our efforts need to be organized around our purpose, not our platform,” says CEO and president Gary Knell in his announcement of the 126-year-old society’s restructuring. “Aligning our media teams so that they share a common vision and can bring their expertise to bear across the organization will enable us to seamlessly tell stories to—and share experiences with—our global audience wherever they find us.”
The Society, founded in 1888, currently reaches 500 million people worldwide monthly across its media platforms, products and events. In 2013, the magazine recorded an audience reach of roughly 60 million readers per month with NationalGeographic.com recording approximately 27 million unique visitors monthly.