Today, the iconic media company announces the new wave of leadership behind the recent compelling covers and digital content that have grabbed the attention of pop-culture audiences and industry insiders alike. Kierna Mayo and Kyra Kyles, who ran EBONY.com and JETmag.com respectively, have each been tapped for new roles that will result in enhanced effectiveness across JPC’s print and online storytelling platforms. It also ushers in a new chapter of envelope-pushing, multimedia experimentation as hinted at in the most recent EBONY cover that hit national newsstands today.
Kierna Mayo (@KiernaMayo, Twitter/IG) will serve as Editor-in-Chief, VP, Digital Content and will operate out of the JPC New York office. In addition to defining the overall editorial direction for Ebony, this role is responsible for maintaining the tonal and aesthetic consistency of the Ebony brand across all platforms.
Kyra Kyles (@TheKylesFiles, Twitter/IG), who just last year was tapped to serve as Editorial Director of JET, has been promoted to Vice President, Head of Digital Editorial responsible for online content on ebony.com, jetmag.com, and their respective mobile platforms. This position utilizes all JPC digital assets, including social-media channels, to deliver compelling content that attracts users and clients to the venerable brand.
Mayo began her career in the 90’s as an early “hip hop journalist” exploring gender issues within the art form. She later catapulted to co-creator and founding Editor-in-Chief of the groundbreaking Honey magazine. Her writings have appeared in newspapers, academic texts and multiple books including And It Don’t Stop: The Best American Hip Hop Journalism of the Last 25 Years. For over two decades, Mayo has covered race, women and culture for leading national publications including Essence, Vibe, and Marie Claire among others. Prior to joining JPC, she was a creative consultant for Black Entertainment Television/VIACOM, Editorial Director of Tyra.com, and Senior Editor of CosmoGirl, a Hearst Publication. She is a graduate of Hampton University.
Kyles, an award-winning multimedia journalist and content creator with both hard and feature news experience, originally joined JET as a Senior Editor for the print edition in 2011, overseeing the lifestyle coverage while maintaining a highly buzzed-about online feature, Keeping it 140, lampooning the Facebook, Instagram and Twitter travails of public figures. Kyles was promoted to the Editorial Director of JET, overseeing the strategy for the fast-growing digital brand after making her mark as Managing Editor for jetmag.com, where she dramatically increased site traffic, social media reach, and expanded the outlet’s lifestyle, sports, entertainment and news coverage on the site to meet visitors’ voracious appetite for service- and expert-oriented pieces.
Prior to joining JPC, Kyles, Chicago native and Northwestern University alumnae, gained national recognition as a Tribune Company columnist and creator of the “Kyles Files,” a celebrated pop culture column that was accompanied by her own weekly WGN-TV pop culture segment. A winner of the company’s coveted Jones Beck Award for editorial writing, she also innovated “the track-off,” an online competition for indie artists, which was reverse published in the millennial-focused Tribune RedEye publication.
Kyles, one of WVON and Ariel Capital’s “Top 40 Under 40 Game Changers” and Chicago Defender’s “40 Under 40 to Watch” is immediate past President of the National Association of Black Journalists-Chicago chapter. She also is a speaker, pop culture pundit and academic lecturer who co-created and taught a well-regarded course at Northwestern University on hip-hop origins and culture.
Follow @ebonymag on Twitter