Update: NYT Hires New Communications Director

The New York Times has hired Robert H. Christie, formerly of Dow Jones & Co., as its new vice president of corporate communications, the paper announced today. He starts on March 22, and will report to Janet Robinson, president and CEO of the Times Co.

Before working at Dow Jones, Christie worked at Sony, and he’s also worked at Goodman Media International and The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. He succeeds Catherine Mathis, who quit the Times in August 2009.

Update: FishbowlNY’s sister site, PRNewser, provides additional insight into the hire:

Christie told PRNewser via a phone interview today that he is “very excited about the opportunity” and that he “looks forward to doing good work for the Times.”

The Times job is one of the most high profile PR jobs in media, and the company clearly took its time in finding the right candidate. A company spokesperson confirmed to PRNewser that they’ve been evaluating candidates since Mathis’ departure.

Times reporters we’ve spoken to over the past months were speculating as to whether or not the announcement would come before the company announced its “metered pay model” plans in late January.

One reporter we spoke with today said, “we’re quite excited…the people who have worked with Christie really respect him.” No doubt Times reporters are also happy at the fact they now have a PR leader who knows the inner workings of their arch-rival The Wall Street Journal.

Press release after the jump.

The New York Times Company announced today it has named Robert H. Christie to the post of senior vice president of corporate communications. He is charged with the planning, development and implementation of the Company’s internal and external communications strategies. Mr. Christie will serve as a member of the Company’s senior management team and report to Janet Robinson, president and CEO, effective March 22, 2010.

Previously, Mr. Christie, 40, was vice president of communications at Dow Jones & Company, where he was responsible for brand, executive and crisis communications for its consumer businesses worldwide.

“Bob is a recognized leader by the media, his peers and the management teams he served at Dow Jones and Sony for his ability to direct communications efforts for his clients and satisfy the demands of the media,” Ms. Robinson said. “His depth and expertise in both media and technology will serve The New York Times Company well as we continue to expand upon our leadership positions with our print and digital products.”

During his tenure at Dow Jones, Mr. Christie held several roles in the communications and public relations departments handling issues for Dow Jones corporate and its various business units, news departments and ad sales groups. He directed the communications campaigns for the launches of The Wall Street Journal Weekend Edition in 2005, the redesigned Journal in 2007 and the acquisition of CBSMarketWatch.com.

Before joining Dow Jones in August 2003, Mr. Christie spent four years at Sony Electronics Inc., where he played a significant role in Sony’s communications efforts. Previously he served as a senior account director for Goodman Media International Inc., where he managed a wide range of client campaigns for the firm’s corporate clients. Mr. Christie began his career in 1990 at The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, where he served in a variety of media relations and public relations positions.

In 2007, Mr. Christie was selected as one of the top 40 public relations executives in the United States under the age of 40 by PR Week magazine, the leading trade magazine for public relations professionals.

Mr. Christie is a graduate of Mansfield University of Pennsylvania and in 2009 his alma mater awarded him its Society of Honors Outstanding Young Alumni Award.