Janice Min Pays Tribute to Her Departing Culture Editor

DeganPenerTwitterProfilePicOn September 10, one of the original members of Janice Min’s Hollywood Reporter team will be moving on.

Both the importance of culture editor Degen Pener’s contributions and Min’s fondness for him, personally, shine through in a memo circulated this afternoon:

Dear Staff:

I’m sure many of you have heard the news that culture editor Degen Pener will be leaving us in September, but I wanted to formally tell all of you as I know his impact is felt around so many parts of this organization.

Almost exactly four years ago, Degen was among the first five people I hired at The Hollywood Reporter in anticipation of its relaunch. I had known Degen a bit in New York, and was surprised (as I considered him a bit of a free spirit) that he wanted to come work on what was then just an imaginary magazine that I could only describe conceptually (admittedly, it sounded pretty good). As our culture editor, he dove right in for the launch, and was instrumental in creating so much of the tone and style that is now synonymous with The Hollywood Reporter.

His knowledge of the arts, philanthropy, fashion, luxury, home design, food and just about everything else made him a perfect all-around player in our halls; someone who could gracefully and intelligently leaven the business side of the equation in our 360 degree coverage of Hollywood. And he has been able to do it with the deft touch of someone who can convey taste, sophistication and aspiration without the slightest bit of elitism – all while being witty, clever and a great journalist with the highest standards. I will be forever grateful for his contributions and for coming on this crazy ride with me and with us (and for hiring some tremendous people along the way).

Degen is now moving on to his next chapter – parenthood – as he and his partner await adoption of their first child, so I hope you will join me in congratulating him. Though Degen’s last day is September 10, I fully hope to convince him to come back for an occasional respite from fatherhood to help us out on our myriad projects.

We’ll send Degen off with a proper farewell party at somewhere fittingly fabulous closer to his end date, so stay tuned.


[Photo via: @DegenPener]