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Los Angeles Times SVP Julia Turner Resigns as Newspaper’s Turmoil Continues

Julia Turner, a top content executive of the Los Angeles Times, resigned Tuesday, saying she would “take some time to explore how we can develop sustainable business models for news in the digital age.” She is joining USC Annenberg’s Communication Leadership & Policy as a senior follow, the journalism school announced Tuesday.

Turner, the Times’ senior vice president for content business strategy, announced her exit in a statement on X (formerly Twitter) and in a note to the newspaper’s staff, becoming the latest casualty of a newsroom in turmoil.

The Times, which two weeks ago laid off 120 editorial staffers, has also lost at least six top news-related officials in the past month.

The layoffs, in turn, followed two weeks after executive editor Kevin Merida abruptly resigned, in part because he knew he would have to oversee sweeping cutbacks at a publication that was operating without a publisher or CEO and losing about $40 million a year. Through resignations or the layoffs, the Times also lost managing editors Shani Hilton and Sara Yasin, Pulitzer Prize-winning Washington, D.C., bureau chief Kimbriell Kelly, Angel Rodriguez, general manager for Latino initiatives at the paper, and Angie Jaime, who was the head of 404, the Times’ social media content team.

Turner’s departure, which the Times reported on a story its app and website, comes after she acknowledged in a memo to staff that management had not adequately conveyed Hilton’s exit.

“It has been an extraordinary privilege to be part of this newsroom — one of the most talented and tenacious this industry has ever produced,” Turner said in the note to Times staff. “I leave a stronger, better, braver journalist, thanks to all of you.”

Turner was promoted into the role of senior VP in March. She had previously been serving as a deputy managing editor with oversight of the newsroom. Before joining the Times in November 2018, Turner served as editor-in-chief of Slate.

In her latest role with the Times, she worked “closely with colleagues on the business side, aligning editorial and financial goals and leading efforts to refine and expand plans for a wide range of projects,” according to her bio on the Times’ website.

“Julia Turner is leaving the company after five years of distinguished service. We are grateful to her for her editorial and strategic leadership, and for the ways in which she has made us a stronger and better institution,”  Chris Argentieri, president and chief operating officer of The Times, said in a statement.

With her exit from the Times, Turner will be taking a position at USC’s journalism school.

Geoffrey Cowan, director of the USC Center on Communication Leadership and Policy, said in a statement that Turner is bringing “decades of experience exploring how to create and support innovative, high-caliber journalism in the digital age” to the school.

Sharon Knolle contributed to this report.

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