A Portfolio of 'Portfolio' Hires

Or Who'll Be Sitting Next to Eichenwald at Edit Meetings

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- It's no exaggeration to call Conde Nast Publications' forthcoming (well, next May) entry into the business category, Portfolio, the source of almost all career mobility in magazineland this year -- it said it was looking for 75 to 100 editorial staffers, after all -- and MediaWorks long ago gave up on tracking each hire.
Kurt Eichenwald
Kurt Eichenwald Credit: Nytimes.com

But then came this week's get of Kurt Eichenwald from The New York Times, and we got to wondering who was passing whom in the Conde Nast hallways these days. Fertile hunting grounds so far have included Fortune, Wired, Vanity Fair, Time, the Los Angeles Times and The New York Times. Now that the Conde Nast launch says it's about halfway staffed up, MediaWorks thought it was time to assemble the Portfolio portfolio and see just how the masthead has developed so far. Ready? Deep breath.

Last December, Blaise Zerega was named managing editor; he had been managing editor at Conde Nast's Wired. Jim Impoco was named a deputy editor; he had been The New York Times' Sunday business editor and previously worked at Time Inc.'s Fortune. And Lisa Berman was named photography director; she had been photo editor at Conde Nast's Vanity Fair.
Dan Roth
Dan Roth

In March, Portfolio raided Fortune, stealing Senior Editor Dan Roth away to become a senior writer.

Two months later, Amy Stevens was named to be the other deputy editor; she had been editor of The Wall Street Journal's "Weekend Journal," created by Portfolio's editor in chief, Joanne Lipman, who was herself poached from The Journal last year.

June saw the most daring raid on Time Inc. yet, yielding one Matt Cooper, who was named Washington editor. He had been political editor at Time.com and before that was a Time magazine White House correspondent -- the guy with the subpoenas. But Portfolio landed another Time Inc. target that month: Katrina Booker, who was named a senior writer; she had been senior writer at Fortune.
Joanne Lipman
Joanne Lipman

July may have been peak hunting season. Susan Murcko was named a senior editor; she had been senior editor for Conde Nast's Wired. Amy Wallace and Kevin Gray were named a senior writers; she had been deputy business editor at the Los Angeles Times, while he had been an articles editor and feature writer at Conde Nast's Details. And Gabriel Sherman was named a staff writer; he had been media reporter at the New York Observer.

At the height of summer in August, though, Portfolio hired Kyle Pope to be a senior editor; he had been freelancing for publications including the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times and Dennis Publishing's Blender. It also named Robert Priest its art director, promoting him out of the freelancing he had been doing since November.
Matt Cooper
Matt Cooper Credit: AP

And this month so far has brought two big names. Chris Jones was named managing editor for the web; he had been director of programming at Yahoo Finance. And Kurt Eichenwald was named senior writer and investigative reporter; he had been investigative reporter for The New York Times business section, most recently in the headlines for seeking counseling after his intense expose of pedophiles online.

Having written for Fortune and The New York Times also seemed to help Russ Mitchell, a freelancer hired as senior writer, along with Sheelah Kolhatkar, who is leaving the Observer to become staff writer.

Exhale. Looks like quite a team, but everyone still better hit the ground running. There's only seven months left until the first issue comes out.

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