David Carey Shakes Up Town & Country

Seven months into his job as president of Hearst Magazines, David Carey is making his presence felt, hiring fellow Condé Nast alum Jay Fielden (pictured) to edit Town & Country.
Fielden was the editor of Vogue spinoff Men’s Vogue, which ceased publication in 2009 after being cut down to two issues per year in 2008. He and Carey became acquainted at The New Yorker, where Carey was publisher and Fielden worked in editorial. Since 2009, he’s been working with Vogue creative director Grace Coddington on her memoir.
“He has great instincts for the life and interests of the Town & Country reader and for the kind of content they’ll find relevant and engaging,” Carey said in a statement.
Fielden said in an interview that he plans to beef up the magazine’s “journalistic backbone” and bring more consistency to the covers to try to appeal to new readers.
“I certainly have big ambitions,” he said. “The magazine I envision does reestablish its writing credentials and point of view. It needs a journalistic tone to it.”
Out in the shuffle is Stephen Drucker, who was named editor in chief less than a year ago, with a mission to revive the recession-battered brand. Drucker apparently is exiting gracefully; he decided to leave the company after his contract ended and toasted his replacement with staff today, according to a source there.
Drucker leaves T&C in good shape on the circulation front: total paid and verified circ rose 1 percent to 429,169 in the second half of 2010 with a 22 percent increase in newsstand sales, to 37,858, at a time of generally declining single-copy sales.
In terms of ad pages, Town & Country has started to emerge from the depths of the downturn. Ad pages rose 7 percent in 2010, after a 46 percent dropoff the year before, per the AdweekMedia Monitor. (The title, though, is currently down 13 percent year of year as of its Feb. 2011 issue.)