Jet's new editor-in-chief, Mitzi Miller, has worked for Essence, Vibe, Uptown and Honey.
Mitzi Miller, a writer and editor at women's magazines who with Denene Millner and Angela Burt-Murray co-wrote two books -- "The Vow: a Novel " and "The Angry Black Woman’s Guide to Life" -- has been named editor-in-chief of Jet magazine, Johnson Publishing Co. announced.
Miller takes over on May 9, the Monday announcement said, succeeding Mira Lowe, who left in January .
Desiree Rogers, CEO of Johnson Publishing, said in the announcement, "We continue to implement our corporate strategy of placing industry veterans in key management roles at Johnson Publishing. Mitzi brings an impressive journalistic record to her role and will begin the process of assessing the future of Jet as she takes on the leadership of the magazine.”
The pocket-sized news digest, which leans heavily on celebrity news, is about to celebrate its 60th year.
Last year saw advertising dollars for Ebony and Jet decline more steeply than for other magazines that target African Americans or Hispanics and are tracked by the Publishers Information Bureau. The decline was 8.4 percent for Ebony and 20.8 percent for Jet .
When Lowe left, Rodrigo A. Sierra, chief marketing officer and senior vice president, said Johnson Publishing would seek "a strong leader who has a really good idea of where they think that magazine can go for the future," who will keep it linked to the community and will preside over "a very strong digital site."
One challenge will be how to keep the role of a weekly magazine relevant when breaking news can be found more immediately on the Web, he said.
According to the announcement, "Miller brings to JET her expertise as an editorial consultant for Juicy and SET Magazines and her writing skills as a contributor to Essence, VIBE, Uptown Magazine, among others. She was the entertainment editor at HONEY Magazine where she wrote the popular 'girl-around-town' column. Miller was also a TV and culture critic for VH1 and the Food Network."
On her LinkedIn profile, Miller lists herself as a contributing editor at Essence magazine, a freelancer and as CEO and president of My Mother's Child Productions, which she calls "The dream job -- working for myself. I write bios, articles, books, and screenplays."
In a 2008 interview with Yvelette Stines for Stines' calmingcomers.com , Miller discussed how her life changed after a liver transplant 10 years earlier.
"For anyone who wants to follow their dream, Mitzi Miller encourages everyone to start immediately. 'Start now!' she emphasizes. 'The world has changed so much from two years ago, we don’t even know what is going to happen tomorrow.' As someone who is encouraging everyone to pursue their dream and live their best life to the fullest, Miller is speaking from experience. Celebrating her 10 year liver transplant recipient anniversary on June 30, 2008, Miller, 32, is happy to be alive. 'I am so blessed to be living and working in my career,' she says excitedly. 'I never planned life beyond 10 years because recipients are not supposed [to] live beyond that time. I am so lucky and grateful and I wouldn’t take this experience back nor wish it on anyone,' she continues," Stines wrote.
"Miller does wish that people would live without fear. '[L]iving without fear, that is what makes successful people, they never let fear stop them,' she says. Once again living and speaking from experience her fearlessness helped her land her dream job. 'I was working in sales and marketing for nine months, and it was not for me.' One night she saw Amy Barnett, who was Managing Editor of Honey Magazine, outside of a night club. Miller used her humor and intelligence to convince Barnett, author of Get Yours, to give her a chance. 'Two weeks later I was an intern at Honey Magazine, I moved up to Entertainment Editor and won [an] NABJ award for an article Killing Me Softly,' she says. In 2003 Miller was on staff at Jane Magazine and writing critically acclaimed books. Her most recent book Hotlanta written with Denene Millner, was published this spring. It is a series set in Atlanta targeted toward teen readers.'"
"With all her success Miller realizes that she is still learning and growing as a writer. 'I want to take some classes because learning is a great way to improve your craft it is also important to be able to accept criticism and help.' Her advice for those who want to follow their dreams is simply never give up. 'It is important to do something toward your goal. Everyone gets up and is still striving to get somewhere. The majority of people that we look up to are still hustling, so never give up. Everyday is a new opportunity to start over.' ”
Johnson introduced a new design for Ebony this month , and Sierra told Journal-isms then that in addition to seeking a new editor for Jet, the company had requested proposals to redesign its online presence and was hoping to revive the fabled Ebony Fashion Fair show.