We are excited to announce that Laurie Saito, The Stranger's general manager, is being promoted to the position of The Stranger's publisher. Saito will be only the second person to assume the role since Index Newspapers president Tim Keck founded the paper in 1991.
Keck broke the news to Stranger staff today by email:
I have some good and important news.
Laurie Saito is being promoted to publisher of The Stranger. She’ll be in charge of all our publishing endeavors in Seattle and tasked with continuing to build our audience and revenues and with overseeing the creation of great publications. The managers of production, sales, distribution, and editorial will report to Laurie. Laurie has been at The Stranger for 20 years and general manager for 15—so in many ways, she's already been doing a lot of this job. Laurie is incredibly smart, hardworking, honest, and loves the paper. She’s helped guide us through difficult times, has had a hand in every important decision we’ve taken over the last 15 years, and she's a blast to work with. We know she's going to be great because she already is.
For the last several years, I’ve been splitting my time between The Stranger, The Portland Mercury, the Things to Do Calendar, and Bold Type Tickets. The Stranger deserves a full-time, full-focus publisher. Laurie and Rob Thompson, the publisher of The Portland Mercury, will report to me. I’ll continue to oversee cross-publication departments—calendar and ticketing as well as digital ad sales.
I’ve loved being The Stranger’s publisher for all of these years. It’s been an unbelievably fun, crazy, challenging, and rewarding job. My favorite part has always been shooting the shit and working with all of you. Thankfully, for me, that’s not going to change.
We’ll be making this transition over the next two weeks. And we’ll have a toast with cheap sheet cake, cheaper champagne, and off-brand soda at 4:30 p.m. in editorial.
Come congratulate Laurie Saito, our new publisher!!!!
And a note from Laurie:
This is an incredible honor. Tim, you have been an amazing mentor and friend, and I will always be grateful for the opportunities you have given me over the past twenty years. In two weeks, when the full weight of being The Stranger’s publisher hits me, I know I will be marveling at how you made the job seem so effortless.
To everyone who isn’t Tim, I want to say how excited and thrilled I am to take on this new challenge. I look forward to working closely with our wonderfully talented staff.
While what we do is not easy, it is important, we have fun doing it, and I can’t think of any other place I’d rather be. The Stranger is truly a unique place to work, and I look forward to serving the team as we continue this adventure together.