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Los Angeles Times installs new leadership team that includes Scott Kraft, Kris Viesselman and Kimi Yoshino

Los Angeles Times installs new leadership team that includes Scott Kraft, Kris Viesselman and Kimi Yoshino
From left are members of the new Los Angeles Times leadership team: Scott Kraft, Kimi Yoshino and Kris Viesselman. (Los Angeles Times)

Los Angeles Times Executive Editor Norman Pearlstine on Monday unveiled his leadership team that includes newsroom veterans and a newly hired editor.

Scott Kraft becomes managing editor. Kraft has been with The Times for more than three decades, and now will be responsible for foreign, national, Washington, California and Metro news in addition to investigations and enterprise reporting. Until Monday, Kraft, 63, served as deputy managing editor and previously was front-page editor and national editor.

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A longtime national reporter and foreign correspondent, Kraft served stints as bureau chief in Nairobi, Kenya; Johannesburg, South Africa; and Paris. He grew up in Kansas and joined The Times in its Chicago bureau in 1984, after working at the Associated Press, where he was recognized as a Pulitzer Prize finalist. He was one of the few senior editors to survive a purge of the paper’s leadership last summer by its previous owners.

“Scott’s promotion is an acknowledgment of the role he instinctively took on during the past tumultuous year, working with teams throughout the newsroom to produce journalism of the highest quality,” Pearlstine said in a note to staff.

Kris Viesselman, 52, on Monday joined The Times in the newly created position of chief transformation editor and creative director. The Minnesota native comes to Los Angeles from Congressional Quarterly and Roll Call in Washington, D.C., where she served as editor in chief, leading a newsroom of more than 100 people covering Congress. Earlier in her career, she worked at The Times, the Orange County Register and the San Diego Union-Tribune. She has spent most of her career in California, starting out at the Sacramento Bee.

Viesselman will be in charge of the digital report, audience engagement, the data desk, design, video and newsletters — areas of growth identified by The Times’ new owner, Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong, who last month acquired the California Times news group, which includes the San Diego paper, from Chicago newspaper company Tronc.

Also promoted was Kimi Yoshino, 46, who has served as business editor for the last four years. She becomes deputy managing editor, overseeing sports, business, arts, entertainment and lifestyle coverage. In the last few months, Yoshino also was in charge of the newspaper’s digital report. She worked as an editor in Metro and as a reporter, joining the paper’s Orange County edition in 2000.

“I have come to recognize Kimi’s innate sense of fairness,” Pearlstine said in the memo. “She makes tough decisions look easy. I also appreciate her ability to create an environment that encourages collaboration and great journalism.”

Yoshino, who grew up in Modesto, attracted attention in January, when she was suspended by a previous editor, a move that prompted an outcry from the newsroom, which quickly mobilized in support of her.

Colin Crawford remains a deputy managing editor, responsible for news operations, development and labor relations, photography, the editorial library, Spanish-language Hoy and community newspapers.

Separate from the newsroom, Nick Goldberg, editor of the editorial pages, will continue to oversee Opinion, including editorials, op-ed columns and opinion columnists.

The five editors all will report to Pearlstine.

5:40 p.m.: This article was updated with additional background on the new leadership team.

This article was originally published at 2:30 p.m.

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