Alexis Madrigal is no longer Fusion’s Editor-in-Chief. He has stepped down from the position to take on a new role as Editor-at-Large, writing and producing stories focusing on technology, housing and trade, as well as working on Fusion’s documentary series Real Future TV.
Since Fusion hired him in 2014, Madrigal has remained based in Oakland, commuting regularly to New York, where most of Fusion’s editorial staff is housed. In an email to staff, he writes that although the traveling has taken a toll on him, it has been a great ride:
“For me, leading this team as we built the foundation of Fusion digital has been an honor. I love our culture. I love our people. I believe in our mission. And I think we’re creating something unlike any other media company.”
In his email, Madrigal also mentions his replacement, Dodai Stewart, who he calls “brilliant” and the “best possible person” to take over the job.
Stewart, who joined Fusion from Gawker Media’s Jezebel, was promoted from from Executive Editor to Editor-in-Chief, leading Fusion and all of its editorial verticals.
Stewart is based in New York and will be able to directly oversee the editorial team on a day to day basis.
Below are emails announcing the changes from Madrigal and Fusion President Daniel Eilemberg.
From: Alexis Madrigal
Subject: Dodai for President
Dear, Well, Everyone:
I am so excited that as of today Dodai Stewart is our new editor-in-chief. She is brilliant. She is hilarious. She is wise. She is the best possible person in the whole damn world to take on the leadership of this place.
Me, I’ll be our new Editor at Large. But not the got-put-out-to-pasture kind of Editor at Large. I’m going to get back to writing a ton more, focusing on technology, housing, and trade. I’ve got a new podcast about the Port of Oakland, global shipping, and the future of work coming out soon. And of course, there’s the next iteration of Real Future TV to work on. (You can read a little more about my beat in a forthcoming post on Fusion.net).
Back to Dodai. I can pinpoint almost precisely when I knew this day would come. It was about this time last year. I drummed up some reason to call Dodai to talk about Fusion. And before I knew it, an hour had passed and I’d walked four miles across Oakland as we talked about what Fusion was and what it could be.The thought arrived from the ether: this person is going to be the next EIC of Fusion.
Soon thereafter, she got bumped up to become our executive editor, where she has flourished working with teams and helping me manage the complexities of our organization. Day by day, I could see that her understanding of what Fusion was—like at the core of it—was better than anyone’s.
A few months ago, Dodai and I were down in Miami sitting under a palm tree (because when are you not sitting under a palm tree in Miami really) having a drink and I broached the idea with her. I knew she was supposed to be EIC, but I wanted to be sure that she knew that, too.
Of course she did. And Danny did, too.
Practically speaking, it just makes so much sense. First, there are all of her aforementioned talents and skills. Second, she’ll be able to provide more direct management for folks in New York and Miami. And she just happens to know all of our new colleagues at GMG.
For me, leading this team as we built the foundation of Fusion digital has been an honor. I love our culture. I love our people. I believe in our mission. And I think we’re creating something unlike any other media company. Let’s be real, though, too: it’s been really hard. I’ve got two kids under three and I live 3000 miles from most of the edit team. I mean, I’ve taken 16 redeyes in the last year, counting last
night. Have you seen all the new gray in my beard? I earned that shit.
I am very grateful to Danny and our leadership for building a team here that has made a transition like this so easy. We have such strong talent here, and I know that we’re going to keep telling the real stories of our generation. We’ll talk about this transition more on this morning’s editorial call.
I know that I will miss this job so much. But it is in the very best of hands. Dodai, take the wheel. I’ll be here at the keyboard.
All my best,
Alexis, Editor at Large
From: Daniel Eilemberg
Subject: Dodai & Alexis
Some exciting news to share with all of you this this morning – as of today we have a new Editor-in-Chief, Dodai Stewart. Dodai will lead FUSION and all of its editorial verticals.
It would of course be a terribly bitter-sweet moment if Alexis were moving on, but we couldn’t be happier that he’ll remain as much a part of FUSION as ever as Editor-at-Large – doing more of what he loves most: writing great, powerful, eloquent pieces on the intersection of society and technology. He’ll also continue to executive produce his brain-child Real Future show for our TV network and the Real Future Fair event in the Bay Area.
I couldn’t be more thankful to Alexis. He stepped up when we needed his stewardship, and built with all of you a focused, smart, meaningful digital operation at FUSION that we’ve all come to be proud of. One that is fiercely aligned with the interest of the new America we serve, and that represents its diversity in its staff and audience. Alexis, thanks man. We all owe you big time, and couldn’t be happier to have you around and know I will count on your continued guidance.
I can think of no one more qualified, at FUSION, or in the world, to take the reigns of FUSION than Dodai. As our Executive Editor, Dodai has been central to defining our editorial mission, and the driving force of our voice across units and verticals. She comes to the role with a wealth of knowledge and understanding about FUSION, our staff and mission, as well as deeper relations with our cousins at the Gizmodo Media Group.
Dodai will continue to be based in NY, working hands on with the editorial team there and helping to strengthen communication among our east coast and west coast bureaus as well with others within the Fusion Media Group.
I am excited to work with Dodai and all of you as she ushers FUSION into its next stage; and thrilled to continue to count Alexis as one of our own. Please join me in congratulating Dodai and Alexis as they move into their new and exciting roles.
Look forward to seeing all of you in NY this morning, and the rest of you over the next week in each office.
President and Chief Content Officer