More changes at the top of Aspen Times
July 6, 2011
ASPEN – Jenna Weatherred, who has led the Aspen Times as publisher for much of the past decade, will be dedicating 100 percent of her time and efforts as publisher of the Glenwood Springs Post Independent, effective Friday.
This move allows Times advertising director Gunilla Asher and operations manager Ryan Slabaugh to move into the role of co-managers of the Times and its weekly affiliates, the Aspen Times Weekly and the Snowmass Sun. Slabaugh will also assume the role of editor following the departure of Bob Ward. Asher will continue as advertising director.
Weatherred, who lives with her family in Glenwood, will be moving from a split role as publisher of The Aspen Times and the Glenwood Springs Post Independent to a dedicated focus on the Glenwood Springs and Rifle communities.
Weatherred took on the dual role of publisher for both of the newspapers in 2009.
“Jenna has done a remarkable job in her tenure as publisher of the Times,” said Colorado Mountain News Media General Manager Jim Morgan. “Going forward, Gunilla and Ryan are fortunate to be working from the very solid foundation Jenna and the Times’ team constructed.”
The change is an extension of the decision announced in May to make the Aspen and Glenwood daily newspapers more independent of each other. For the past two years, the newspapers published the preponderance of advertisements and news stories in both papers. A survey of more than 1,100 readers, by a near 2-to-1 margin, indicated that readers in both communities preferred the more independent model.
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“We are fortunate to have a deep bench allowing these changes to occur internally. The team work displayed among these three individuals was crucial in allowing this to work,” Morgan said. “Having Jenna as a seasoned publisher with a record of success and a key member of CMNM’s management team, and her leadership day-to-day in Glenwood, will be essential in that newspaper’s resurgence.”
Rick Carroll will continue in his role as managing editor of the Times. In Glenwood, Heather McGregor continues in her role as managing editor.
Weatherred joined The Aspen Times in 1998 as advertising director after working in retail sales management. She became sole publisher in 2004 after serving as co-manager of the paper with former editor and publisher Andy Stone, who has retired but continues to write a column for the Times. She is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin.
“Being part of The Aspen Times staff has been a great privilege. I have learned so much from both the staff and the community. Working for both the Times and the PI has been a wonderful experience as well, but it has also been a challenge,” Weatherred said. “I am now so excited to get to focus on my own hometown paper with the exceptional staff at the Post Independent. I am really looking forward to becoming more involved with the community and helping the paper continue to grow.”
Asher, who grew up in Aspen and is a graduate of Fort Lewis College in Durango, joined The Aspen Times as advertising director in 2003. Previously she was a sales representative for technology and information companies in Colorado and Washington state.
“I am ready for this challenge, and I am very excited to rededicate myself to our Aspen-Snowmass papers and the communities that they serve,” Asher said.
Slabaugh, who grew up in the Midwest and graduated from DePauw University, joined the Roaring Fork newspapers in the fall of 2010. Previously he had been editor of the Sierra Sun and its companion newspapers along the shore of Lake Tahoe in Nevada and California, and before that was managing editor of the Summit Daily News in Frisco and an editor at the Vail Daily.
“The opportunity is to build upon a long history of talented editors and leaders at The Aspen Times,” Slabaugh said. “So I know I’m a lucky guy with a tremendous responsibility. But I am confident because I believe in our team, our people, and our role here, and I know we will never waver from our commitment to this community. It is the community’s paper, after all, and always will be.”