The Walla Walla Union-Bulletin is announcing changes to leadership this week that will keep local management in place and ensure its mission remains focused on strong, community journalism.
Dian Ver Valen, who was named editor in February, has been promoted to senior editor and will act as the lead member of the executive team.
In addition to directing daily news coverage and managing the Union-Bulletin’s 17-person newsroom, she will operate as the company’s spokesperson in the community and ensure the U-B’s attention is centered on its editorial mission.
Three other longtime U-B leaders will help manage operations as members of the executive team.
Matt Lohrmann, who has been the newspaper’s advertising director, is being promoted to sales director. He will add commercial print sales, community partnership oversight and other advertising operations to his responsibilities.
Mike Cibart, who has been manager of circulation, will become director of operations.
Jim Seiner will maintain responsibility for the U-B’s printing and packaging operations.
“Our goal has been and always will be to keep the residents of the Walla Walla Valley informed,” Ver Valen said. “I am honored to carry on this long-standing tradition here and to help move our business into a more digitally focused, strongly community-minded future.”
In addition to the leadership changes this week, the U-B will also introduce a new digital replica of the printed newspaper. The digital replica provides online subscribers with the complete newspaper experience — ads, photos, comics and more — in a digital format accessible on any device.
“I’m excited about the leadership team at the Union-Bulletin,” said Charles Horton, who has been managing the newspaper since March.
“Dian, Matt, Mike and Jim have been doing amazing work over the past several months. They’ve steered their teams through an extremely challenging time and simultaneously led several initiatives that will benefit the Union-Bulletin’s readers and the Walla Walla community.”