While the annual Hot List is Adweek’s longest-running franchise, we’ve never thrown a big party to celebrate it. All that changes Dec. 2 with the first Adweek Hot List Gala in New York. It is a major undertaking, with more than 100 awards handed out across the Hot List (decided by our editors) and Readers’ Choice Poll (which at deadline had pulled in 1.8 million votes at Adweek.com). To make the evening even more dramatic—and complicated to pull off—all the winners will be revealed for the first time during the ceremony.
We have layered a lot of firsts onto this effort, and to give credit where credit is due, supercharging the franchise was the vision of Adweek’s publisher Suzan Gursoy, who championed—at times fought for—an ambitious and contemporary rethinking of the Hot List that would transform not only the franchise but also the Adweek brand.
Here, we are pleased to recognize the TV shows we adore (The Walking Dead), the magazines we cherish (Bon Appétit) and the digital platforms that have changed our lives (that’s my shot of our neon Hot List trophy on the right, via Instagram).
Another first: We have never embargoed an issue, until now. And making an already challenging project even more so, we closed this issue during the short Thanksgiving week. It all takes a great deal of coordination, and no one is better at getting our ship out of port than managing editor Lisa Granatstein.
And this Hot List issue is a battleship. The photography and profiles here constitute our biggest Hot List issue ever. The work of our entire editorial staff—in particular, senior photo editor Margo Didia, executive creative director Nick Mrozowski and executive editor Tony Case—was exceptional. (We especially enjoyed debating the merits of the portrait of Cosmopolitan’s Joanna Coles, our Magazine Editor of the Year. Those of us who were drawn in by its Hopperesque elegance and mystery won out.)
Check it out. It’s pretty hot.