Fusion Announces Digital Promotions

By Mark Joyella 

Fusion has announced a series of promotions as the network makes expanded investments in digital. “In the coming months, with the full support of our parent companies, we will be doubling down on our digital efforts, further investing in key areas, while setting our collective sights even higher,” said Fusion CEO Isaac Lee in a memo to staff.

Fusion named Alexis Madrigal editor in chief of Fusion, Hillary Frey is promoted to executive editor, Anna Holmes will take on an expanded role as editorial director, and Jane Spencer has been promoted to SVP, emerging platforms.

Lee’s full memo:


I have important news and updates to share with you about the future of Fusion.

In the coming months, with the full support of our parent companies, we will be doubling down on our digital efforts, further investing in key areas, while setting our collective sights even higher.

Over the past year Danny Eilemberg has led our digital transformation, re-building our editorial, product, technology and audience development teams with world-class talent working across platforms. In doing so, we have grown our reach, rebuilt our technology platforms and digital products, and seen our team’s work nominated for numerous awards.

We’re building Fusion into a dynamic, new type of media company—one built around the fact that a young, diverse, socially and culturally connected audience consumes content without borders. Fusion is focused not only in reaching this audience on television and online, but engaging with them in every place they consume information—from Snapchat and Instagram to Apple TV and Vine.

Innovation will continue to be a cornerstone of our efforts, and that extends to experimenting with new and engaging ways to connect brands to our audience across all of Fusion’s platforms. Our Chief Strategy Officer Boris Gartner will continue to lead our business operations, including digital monetization and our new branded-content units Lightworks and Fearless.

I am excited to announce that Alexis Madrigal, one of the best minds in journalism, will lead our digital editorial team as the new Editor-in-Chief of Fusion, reporting to Danny. His work at The Atlantic, Wired, and Fresh Air has helped the entire industry understand the changes technology has brought to our field. He’s a generational writing talent and a charismatic force. Alexis intimately understands how our audience experiences media and the importance of harnessing all our platforms to deliver stories that inform, provoke, and entertain. Alexis will bring great leadership, operational excellence, and clarity to the editorial team’s mission and roles. He told me to say that his top priorities are focus and communication, so you’ll be hearing from him a lot, in our national office in the cloud (i.e. Slack), as well as in person and on video.

Joining Alexis in leading us into this next phase of our growth will be Hillary Frey and Anna Holmes. As Executive Editor, Hillary will be a driving force behind our daily coverage. Anna Holmes will take on a broader role as Editorial Director focusing on helping us define and evolve Fusion’s voice. They will both remain headquartered in the New York office giving us a powerful bi-coastal presence. Kevin Roose and Kashmir Hill will also take on a greater set of responsibilities both within the Oakland bureau and across the digital team. Alexis will still host the “Real Future” show, which will premiere later this year on our network, with Roose serving as the sole executive producer.

I’m delighted to announce that Jane Spencer is being promoted to Senior Vice President, Emerging Platforms at Fusion. In her new role, Jane will report to me, focusing on brand extensions and expanding our fast-growing digital footprint. She will work across all of our teams, including digital, television, and with Fearless, our new social impact agency. Jane is ideally suited for her new role, having been a driving force of the successful launch of Fusion.net earlier this year and recruitment of the best editorial team in digital journalism today. A Pulitzer Prize winning international reporter for The Wall Street Journal, Jane has played major roles in the growth of a range of editorial start-ups, including The Daily Beast, where she was executive editor. She is an inspiring and dynamic leader, and she will continue to serve us well as we look to the future.

While we have done incredible work and have world-class talent, we are on an ongoing journey to define who we are, both internally and externally. Fusion champions a more diverse, inclusive America with irresistible, experimental content that informs, provokes, and entertains. We highlight voices that aren’t being heard and we create media no one else can. We have faith in the power of youth and humor and new ideas. We side with the street. And we’re building a brand that will mean something to the most diverse generation America has ever seen.

We know you may have questions about what the change means for you. Alexis will address the editorial staff from Oakland via video conference at 4pm, ET to lay out his vision and plan for supercharging our efforts across all digital platforms. He will be in the New York office next week and plans to meet with each and every member of the team over the coming two weeks.

I truly believe that we are building one of the most daring and rewarding media projects of the 21st century – and a big part of our success is rooted in the talented people who work here. So thank you for all of your hard work. We are going to continue to expand the teams in New York, Miami, Washington, and Oakland with a variety of positions, let your friends know so they can join in on the adventure.