Jim Kirk named publisher, executive editor of Crain’s Chicago Business

Jim Kirk

Jim Kirk, the veteran journalist and former publisher and editor-in-chief of the Chicago Sun-Times, has been named publisher and executive editor of Crain’s Chicago Business.

KC Crain, president and chief operating officer of Detroit-based Crain Communications, announced the appointment Monday.

“We’re delighted to add Jim to the top of our masthead in Chicago,” Crain said in a statement. “His experience both in journalism and in the rapidly changing media business will support growth for our flagship city business publication.”

The position of publisher has been vacant since David Snyder stepped down in November 2016 after 33 years with Crain’s Chicago Business. Kirk will take on additional responsibility as executive editor, overseeing all editorial operations at the weekly publication and website.

Crain's Chicago Business

For the past year, Mary Kramer, group publisher of Crain Communications business publications in Detroit and Cleveland, has had oversight over the company's weeklies in Chicago and New York. But without a full-time publisher based in Chicago, the once-indispensable journal became rudderless. Now it is Kirk's job to restore luster and vitality to the local franchise, which marked its 40th anniversary in April.

Kirk, 53, most recently has been senior vice president of strategic initiatives at Tribune Publishing. During his yearlong stint with the parent company of the Chicago Tribune, he was deployed as editor-in-chief of the Los Angeles Times and interim editor-in-chief of the New York Daily News.

The latest move marks a return to Crain Communications for Kirk, who previously worked as chief of editorial operations at Crain’s Chicago Business.

“I’m thrilled to rejoin Crain’s Chicago Business at this moment," Kirk said. "There is tremendous opportunity ahead to build on the strong foundation of this amazing news organization. I can’t wait to get started.”

Kirk, a native of south suburban Dolton and graduate of Illinois State University, began as Midwest managing editor for Adweek before working as a reporter, columnist and editor for both the Sun-Times and Tribune. He also held top editorial positions with Bloomberg News and the Chicago News Cooperative.