Tuesday, August 19, 2014

John Macfarlane stepping down as
editor of The Walrus

John Macfarlane, the editor and co-publisher of The Walrus magazine since July 2008 is to retire at the end of the year. The search is on to replace him in a newly named position: editor-in-chief, content platforms.
“More than five years ago, I came on board as interim editor for six months, and suddenly it’s five years later,” said Macfarlane [in a release]. “The world of journalism has changed in the last five years, and although I’ve enjoyed every minute here the time has come, as the Walrus said, for a new kind of editor—an editor of all Walrus platforms. I’ve been thinking about this for a while, and decided the timing is right—for me and for the organization.”
Macfarlane has been an important player in the Canadian magazine industry since he was associate editor of Maclean's magazine 1970-72. Since then he has been editor of Toronto Life twice (72 - 74 and 92 - 2007). He was managing director of news, features, and information programming at CTV (1991-92); publisher and editor-in-chief of the Financial Times of Canada (1987-90); publisher of Saturday Night magazine (1980-87); editor of Weekend Magazine (1976-80); executive editor of Maclean’s (1975-76); president of Analytical Communications Incorporated, a public relations company owned by Vickers & Benson (1974-75); and associate editor of Maclean’s (1970-72). He was also entertainment editor of the Toronto Star (1968-70); entertainment editor of the Globe and Mail (1967-68); and editorial writer at the Globe and Mail (1965-67).

In 2007, he received the Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement from the National Magazine Awards Foundation.

He is a director of the Royal Conservatory of Music; former chairman of the Canadian Journalism Foundation (2009-11); former chairman of the Writers’ Trust of Canada (2001-04); former president of the National Magazine Awards Foundation (2000-2002); former chairman of the YMCA of Metropolitan Toronto (1986-87); a former member of the Ontario Arts Council (1985-87); and a founding member of the Friends of Canadian Broadcasting.
“John was a godsend when he arrived, and will be greatly missed,” said Shelley Ambrose, executive director of the Walrus Foundation and co-publisher of the magazine. “We are truly grateful to John for all he has done for the magazine and for the organization – his enthusiasm, experience, expertise, dedication, and professionalism brought much needed stability to the magazine and allowed the foundation to flourish. While John will be difficult to replace,  we accept his decision and are pleased he has given us so much time to orchestrate an orderly transition for what is a unique position in Canadian journalism. And we look forward to discussing with John the ways in which he will stay involved with the work of The Walrus Foundation in 2015 and beyond.”

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