Time magazine names Nancy Gibbs first female managing editor, Richard Stengel leaves to work for Obama

By Daniel S Levine,

Time magazine, which has been publishing for 90 years, has named its first female managing editor, Nancy Gibbs. The move comes after Richard Stengel was nominated to join the State Department by President Barack Obama.

The magazine made the announcement today, confirming Gibbs, 53, as the 17th managing editor in the magazine’s history. She spoke with reporters and staffers today, calling herself “the first managing editor to wear pumps–so far as we know.”

During her tenure at Time, she has written 174 covers stories, the most for any reporter. Gibbs has also co-written two bestselling books about the modern presidency.

“I think I am the first editor to take over when our digital audience is bigger than our print audience,” Gibbs told The New York Times. “My role is going to be more widely spread than past editors’ — on what we are thinking about what we are doing online, what we are doing with tablet, what we are doing with print.”

While Time’s newsstand sales have fallen 39 percent over the past year, it still has 3.3 million subscribers. It’s Twitter presence is also big, with 4.9 million followers.

On Tuesday, it was also announced that Stengel, who held the same position for the past seven years, is going to the State Department. He has been nominated to be an under secretary focusing on public diplomacy and public affairs.

A senior official close to Stengel told Capital New York before the news was confirmed by Time that Stengel's focus at Time on national service makes him a great candidate for the job. “Now he’s taking his own advice and moving on to a senior role at the State Department, where he will have the chance to serve his country," the official added.

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