View all newsletters
Sign up for our free email newsletters

Fighting for quality news media in the digital age.

  1. The Wire
  2. Job Moves
March 12, 2024updated 14 Mar 2024 2:53pm

Ex-Messenger editor Dan Wakeford gets top Us Weekly job

His appointment comes less than two months after The Messenger collapsed.

By Bron Maher

Dan Wakeford, the former People editor who spent much of 2023 as editor-in-chief of ill-fated news outlet The Messenger, has landed the same role at entertainment magazine Us Weekly.

A360media, which publishes Us Weekly, called Wakeford “a globally recognised and award-winning editor, and multi-platform brand builder with an outstanding track record of innovation”.

UK-born Wakeford worked at Heat before crossing the Atlantic for leadership roles at In Touch magazine and, later, Meredith Corporation-owned People.

He left the publication in 2022 and was announced in February last year as launch editor of The Messenger, a centrist, mass-market publication billed by founder Jimmy Finkelstein as a crossover of The Washington Post and the Daily Mail.

The Messenger launched in May with hundreds of staff and $50m in funding – but, hobbled by the lack of a clear target audience and a dour market for publishers in 2023, lasted less than a year before shuttering. Wakeford’s time leading the publication is not mentioned in the Us Weekly press release announcing his new appointment.

Select and enter your email address Weekly insight into the big strategic issues affecting the future of the news industry. Essential reading for media leaders every Thursday. Your morning brew of news about the world of news from Press Gazette and elsewhere in the media. Sent at around 10am UK time. Our weekly does of strategic insight about the future of news media aimed at US readers. A fortnightly update from the front-line of news and advertising. Aimed at marketers and those involved in the advertising industry.
  • Business owner/co-owner
  • CEO
  • COO
  • CFO
  • CTO
  • Chairperson
  • Non-Exec Director
  • Other C-Suite
  • Managing Director
  • President/Partner
  • Senior Executive/SVP or Corporate VP or equivalent
  • Director or equivalent
  • Group or Senior Manager
  • Head of Department/Function
  • Manager
  • Non-manager
  • Retired
  • Other
Visit our privacy Policy for more information about our services, how New Statesman Media Group may use, process and share your personal data, including information on your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications.
Thank you

Thanks for subscribing.

A360media chief content officer Amanda Dameron said that Wakeford’s “exceptional journalistic skills and extensive experience developing and modernising some of the biggest brands in the industry make him the perfect fit to lead Us Weekly into its next chapter of growth and success”.

Content from our partners
MHP Group's 30 To Watch awards for young journalists open for entries
How PA Media is helping newspapers make the digital transition
Publishing on the open web is broken, how generative AI could help fix it

[Read more: From changing journalism to chasing clicks – Why The Messenger failed]

The company said Wakeford’s role will see him “focus on embracing new technologies and platforms” and “further enhance Us Weekly’s reach across all platforms… Readers can expect exciting new developments, innovative storytelling techniques and a fresh perspective on the world of entertainment”.

Wakeford said: “I am thrilled and honored to join such a trusted and iconic brand like Us Weekly. I have always been passionate about telling compelling stories and connecting with readers on a deeper level.

“I look forward to working with the talented team at Us Weekly to deliver zeitgeist defining content that engages, entertains and resonates with audiences across multiple platforms.”

[From 2021: People magazine editor Dan Wakeford – Instagram is our ‘biggest rival’… but celebrities still clamber to be on our cover]

Topics in this article : ,

Email pged@pressgazette.co.uk to point out mistakes, provide story tips or send in a letter for publication on our "Letters Page" blog

Select and enter your email address Weekly insight into the big strategic issues affecting the future of the news industry. Essential reading for media leaders every Thursday. Your morning brew of news about the world of news from Press Gazette and elsewhere in the media. Sent at around 10am UK time. Our weekly does of strategic insight about the future of news media aimed at US readers. A fortnightly update from the front-line of news and advertising. Aimed at marketers and those involved in the advertising industry.
  • Business owner/co-owner
  • CEO
  • COO
  • CFO
  • CTO
  • Chairperson
  • Non-Exec Director
  • Other C-Suite
  • Managing Director
  • President/Partner
  • Senior Executive/SVP or Corporate VP or equivalent
  • Director or equivalent
  • Group or Senior Manager
  • Head of Department/Function
  • Manager
  • Non-manager
  • Retired
  • Other
Visit our privacy Policy for more information about our services, how New Statesman Media Group may use, process and share your personal data, including information on your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications.
Thank you

Thanks for subscribing.

Websites in our network