Washington, D.C. (June 10, 2014)—The Atlantic is welcoming two new editors: Sophie Gilbert, as senior editor of The Atlantic Weekly, and Denise Kersten Wills, who becomes senior editor of the magazine.
“We’re really delighted to be adding two such imaginative, effective editors to reinforce, in print and online, the ideas-driven journalism that distinguishes The Atlantic,” said James Bennet, editor in chief and president of The Atlantic. “Denise will be commissioning powerful profiles and narratives for the magazine, while Sophie is taking charge of increasing the impact and reach of our weekly mobile magazine, The Atlantic Weekly.”
Wills joins The Atlantic as a senior editor, and in this role will edit profiles and features, and help produce special editorial packages. She joins The Atlantic from Politico magazine, which she helped launch, serving as a senior editor. Before Politico, Wills spent five years as an editor at Washingtonian, where she oversaw features, profiles and investigative reports. This is her second stint with Atlantic Media: Wills was a staff correspondent for Government Executive from 2004-2005. She has also worked as an editor at Teacher magazine and at USA Today. Wills has been an adjunct professor at Georgetown, her alma mater.
Gilbert edits The Atlantic Weekly, The Atlantic’s mobile magazine, which provides a polished selection of stories each week drawn from our Web sites, along with a gem from the magazine’s 157-year archives. Gilbert will also write for TheAtlantic.com (in her first week, shereviewed the HBO film The Normal Heart). She was most recently the arts editor at Washingtonian, where she wrote features and managed all cultural coverage in the magazine and online. Gilbert has written for The Washington Post, The New Republic, and Slate. She moved to the U.S. from London in 2007, earning her MA in magazine journalism at NYU while interning for Vogue and Slate.
Wills and Gilbert are joining The Atlantic during a period of growth for the publisher. The Atlantic has surpassed previous high marks for both audience and revenue in the first part of the year. Its three sites—TheAtlantic.com, CityLab.com, and The Wire—now reach nearly 24 million unique monthly visitors, and newsstand sales continue to exceed previous years’ records. The June issue of the magazine, on newsstands now, leads with the powerful “The Case for Reparations,” by Ta-Nehisi Coates. The piece set a single-day record for audience to a magazine story on TheAtlantic.com when it appeared on May 22, and has so far sold nearly twice as many issues on newsstands, compared to the same issue last year. Coates is speaking at a sold-out event on June 12, 2014, at Sixth & I in Washington, D.C.