FBLA EXCLUSIVE: Ted B. Kissell Dishes About Helming The OC Weekly

ocweeklycover.jpeg On April 2, Ted B. Kissell will embark on the formidable job of replacing Will Swaim as editor in chief of the OC Weekly.

Kissell, who is currently senior editor at the Ventura County Star, is a New Times alum, having worked for Village Voice Media Exec Editor Michael Lacey at New Times Miami (where he met his wife) and in Ft. Lauderdale. So he knows exactly what he’s signing up for.

And yet he’s excited about it.

So much so, in fact, that Kissell graciously took our call after putting his young sons (4 ½ and a three months) to bed and talked about his new gig:

Most of the stories coming out of the OC Weekly these days are about how unhappy everyone is.

I’m sure all the people who left are unhappy. I haven’t met with anybody yet. I’m going to meet the staff next week and talk to everybody and find out where they’re at and how they feel about things. I’m going to be relying heavily on them.

What will you tell them?

I’m hoping they’re going to keep doing what they’re doing because there are lot of talented people there — still there.

I was already familiar with some of the people, some of the writers, and I was impressed in general with the paper. I know a lot of people who have respect for Will Swaim and what he accomplished there. It’s a paper I’d want to go to because he made it that way. I’m happy to be going there and picking up where he left off.

What changes can we expect?

I’m not going in there with any preconceived ideas of putting my stamp on things just for the sake of putting my stamp on things. I don’t have a particular agenda, just quality journalism and telling people something they don’t know about the place they live. Which they already do — the first thing I would say to the staff is “Keep up the good work.”