Los Angeles Times Hires Four Audience Engagement Editors

As part of the rebuilding of the Los Angeles Times, Executive Editor Norman Pearlstine and Deputy Managing Editor Sewell Chan made the following announcement.

We are delighted to report that four editors are joining our Audience Engagement team, which is at the forefront of our efforts to vastly expand digital subscriptions to the Los Angeles Times.

Tessa A. Bangs will join our core social team, working across desks to connect readers on Twitter, Facebook and other key platforms with our journalism. Tessa was most recently a news assistant at The New York Times, where she wrote daily briefings for the newspaper’s Snapchat Discover channel. She graduated last May from the University of Notre Dame, where she was an American studies major and edited the student magazine, Scholastic. She was a Dow Jones News Fund editing intern at the New York Times editing center in Gainesville, Fla., before moving to New York. A New Jersey native, Tessa is the youngest of four kids and 12 cousins, and credits her large family for her love of storytelling.

Adriana Lacy is the other new member of our core social team. She, too, joins us from The New York Times, where she has been a news assistant on the Off-Platform team, managing posting and strategy for the newspaper’s main Instagram account and advising departments on SEO practices. Adriana graduated last May from the Pennsylvania State University, where she majored in journalism and African-American studies and founded a magazine, The Underground, that explores the intersection of race, identity and politics. While in college, Adriana was a social media intern (the first) at Axios. Adriana, who grew up in Philadelphia, practices yoga at least 3 to 4 times a week. She’s more than ready for Los Angeles.


Mary Kate Metivier, who will help us develop new audience strategies, joins us from The Kansas City Star, where she has been a regional growth editor. There, she started a project — called “What’s Your KC Q?” — that engages readers on local culture and history. She has been at the forefront of The Star’s efforts around social media, and the use of tools like Omniture and Chartbeat to help journalists understand their audiences. Mary Kate, whose surname is pronounced meh-TEE-vuhr, grew up in a military family in Leavenworth, Kan., and once dreamed of joining the Rockettes. (She tap danced for 12 years.) She graduated in 2016 from the School of Journalism at the University of Missouri, and was an engagement intern at The Star Tribune in Minneapolis before joining The Kansas City Star later that year.

Rachel Schnalzer will be the audience editor for our award-winning Food team. She joins us from BuzzFeed here in Los Angeles, where since 2016 she has been producing, shooting and editing videos — from pitch through post-production — for platforms like YouTube. Before joining BuzzFeed, Rachel was an editor at Snapchat, producing and editing live news stories. She is a 2015 graduate of the Johns Hopkins University, where she studied political science and English. Rachel grew up in the Lehigh Valley of Pennsylvania and now lives in Santa Monica. According to family lore, the character Rachel in Elvira Woodruff’s “The Memory Coat” is named after her.

These journalists will provide vital reinforcement to a team that Samantha Melbourneweaver has led and inspired since she joined The Times in July. We thank her and our other Audience Engagement editors — Fidel Martinez, Kelcie Pegher, Jessica Roy, Steve Saldivar, Christina Schoellkopf and Colleen Shalby — for working every day to extend the reach and impact of our journalism.