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Chronicle shuffles executives; Jeffrey Johnson is new publisher

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Hearst Corporation has shuffled the corporate folks at the top at the Chronicle with an announcement today that Joanne K. Bradford, 49, will be the newspaper’s new president and that longtime publisher Frank J. Vega, 64, is retiring and will be replaced by Jeffrey M. Johnson, 53.  Johnson was publisher at the LA Times for the better part of two years and gained respect among journos when he was ousted by parent Tribune Company in 2006 after publicly refusing to make job cuts demanded by his Chicago bosses. Since then, he’s been an operating partner at The Yucaipa Companies, the privately-held entity controlled by grocery billionaire and developer Ron Burkle, who is influential in Democratic political circles.

Bradford comes to the Chronicle from Demand Media, the content farm operation that publishes sites such as eHow and the humor site Cracked, a huge page view generator that grew out of its merger with the website Pointless Waste of Time. She’s been Demand’s chief revenue and marketing officer since 2010. Here’s a Business Insider Q&A with her when she began that job. The Chronicle story posted to SFGate during the noon hour makes no mention of the man Bradford replaces: Mark Adkins. He shuffled off to become publisher of the Hearst newspaper in Beaumont, Texas, last week.

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