LA Magazine Hires Variety’s Shirley Halperin as New Editor-in-Chief, Ada Guerin Joins as Creative Director | Exclusive

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Veteran music journalist Shirley Halperin has been tapped as the new editor-in-chief of Los Angeles Magazine, according to several individuals with knowledge. Additionally, TheWrap’s former creative director Ada Guerin will join the publication as its new creative director.

Halperin, who is currently executive editor, music at PMC’s Variety, will start her new role in June. She will be charged with overseeing an editorial reboot of the publication’s digital operations, as well as the monthly print magazine edition as new owners Engine Vision Media seek to expand readership to a broader audience. L.A. Mag will look to merge its digital and print operations as it strives to drive revenue after many years of losses, the individual also said.

Guerin previously served at TheWrap’s creative director for nearly eight years, leaving the company in March of this year. The two worked together previously at Penske Media’s The Hollywood Reporter, where Halperin served as a music editor and Guerin as design director.

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A representative for L.A. Magazine, Halperin and Guerin didn’t immediately respond to TheWrap’s requests for comment.

Engine Vision Media, owned by Los Angeles attorneys Mark Geragos and Ben Meiselas, bought L.A. Magazine in December after many years of declining revenue and circulation. Since taking over the magazine, they reestablished an office from a fully remote operation, and have been based in downtown L.A.

Halperin brings a wealth of music and trade experience to the role and a shot in the arm for the 60-year-old publication. Halperin hasn’t previously run a general interest magazine seeking to appeal to a broad swath of L.A. readers. However, she does have both print and digital journalism experience, which will be valuable as the magazine seeks to pivot to profitability.

“The former editor was trying to create some elitist publication mimicking the New Yorker, but clearly it wasn’t resonating with an L.A. audience since the site was only drawing 200,000 viewers a month,” a former writer for the magazine told TheWrap. According to Comscore, the L.A. magazine website drew 280,000 visitors in February.

Editor Maer Roshan was let go in April after four years of running the publication, though he was instrumental in bringing Geragos and Meiselas the idea of buying the magazine to begin with. Roshan was given the news in an abrupt conversation with the new owners and escorted out of the building, according to two individuals with knowledge.

The new owners seem poised to turn L.A. Mag into a more Hollywood industry and celebrity-friendly publication. They also recently hired Christopher Gialanella as president and publisher. He’s the former group publisher for several of Modern Luxury’s city-based brands. Gialanella will work closely with Halperin and Guerin on the next iteration of Los Angeles Magazine.

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