Billboard's transition from music industry trade to celebrity rag is picking up steam. In addition to last week's Fashion Editor hire, Janice Minn, who also helms the Hollywood Reporter, has mined the ranks of W, GQ, Vanity Fair, Esquire and the Daily News to add staffers that include a gossip columnist and Culture Editor.
Exiting after 8 years is West Coast Editor of Billboard.biz, Mitchell Peters.
Minn's New Billboard Staff
Degen Pener, culture editor of The Hollywood Reporter, adds the same role at Billboard. "Thanks to Degen, you can already see in the current Billboard a fashion story about designer money clips, from a $600 Bottega Veneta version to a $5,000 one from Neil Lane," Minj wrote breathlessly in a memo to staff.
Former NY Daily News gossip columnist Carson Griffith is joining Billboard under former Vanity Fair and Page 6 staffer Frank DiGiacomo. Eileen Daspin comes aboard with credits include W, and Time. "In the current issue of Billboard, you’ll see Carson’s first contributions, from a story about a music industry Black Card, meant to emulate the Amex status symbol, and Vfiles, the hot Soho boutique where Rihanna, Miley Cyrus and Katy Perry get their look," wrote Minn.
Rob Hewitt has joined as the publication’s new design director after three years with Conde Nast Traveler. Hewitt worked with Min at InStyle and has spent time at Premiere, GQ and New York magazine. Frank Augugliaro joins from Esquire as Billboard's new art director; and Carrie Lam comes aboard as a designer with Lamour and W. on her resume.
The new photo editor at least can tell Gibson from Gucci. Samantha Xufrom jumps to Billboard from Guitar World, Revolver and (now this hire makes sense) Entertainment Weekly.
More on Billboard's shift to celebrity rag here.