Mary Murcko Returns to Condé Nast as Publisher of Self

Second of two big hires

Headshot of Lisa Granatstein

Following yesterday's bombshell announcement that both the editor and publisher of Self were axed, Condé Nast this morning announced the hire of Mary Murcko, who returns to Self from the Gannett Co. where she was president of national sales, overseeing USA Today, USA Weekend and Gannett Digital.

Murcko replaces Laura McEwen and joins new editor in chief Joyce Chang, who succeeds Lucy Danziger.

Self has been in a tough spot as of late, having apologized for poking fun at a cancer survivor's outfit. The 1.5 million-circ magazine has also been struggling both on the newsstand, where single-copy sales were down 10 percent in the second half of 2013, and in ad pages, which fell 5.7 percent in 2013. (By comparison, competitor Women’s Health saw its own ad pages jump 28 percent last year and Shape grew 11.2 percent.) 

Prior to Gannett, Murcko was executive vp and group publisher at Rodale overseeing Men’s Health, Women’s Health, Prevention and Runner’s World. She was a rising star at Rodale until CEO Maria Rodale reorganized and Murcko left amid a major shakeup that saw heavy hitters exit. Earlier in her career, she served in sales roles at W and Elegant Bride.

“This is an unprecedented opportunity to cultivate one of Condé Nast’s most dynamic brands,” said Murcko. “Reaching the Self audience is more important to marketers than ever before – and creating those opportunities through print, digital, mobile and experiences is truly exciting.”

@lgranatstein Lisa Granatstein is the editor, svp, programming at Adweek.