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FORTUNE Names Alyson Shontell as New Editor in Chief

September 21, 2021 GMT
Photo credit: Axel Springer Alyson Shontell will be Fortune's next--and first female--Editor in Chief starting on October 6, 2021.
Photo credit: Axel Springer Alyson Shontell will be Fortune's next--and first female--Editor in Chief starting on October 6, 2021.
Photo credit: Axel Springer Alyson Shontell will be Fortune's next--and first female--Editor in Chief starting on October 6, 2021.

NEW YORK, Sept. 21, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, FORTUNE announced that Alyson Shontell will be its next Editor in Chief, beginning on October 6, 2021. Shontell will join the renowned media company and its award-winning journalists as the first woman to sit atop FORTUNE’s masthead.

FORTUNE was founded as a magazine in 1929 by Time Inc. cofounder Henry Luce with an aim to “reflect Industrial Life in ink and paper and word and picture as the finest skyscraper reflects it in stone and steel and architecture.” In the 92 years that have followed, FORTUNE has grown into a global, multi-platform media company, serving the purpose of making business better.

As Editor in Chief, Shontell will oversee all content of the company, including its iconic lists—the FORTUNE 500 list, the Most Powerful Women in Business list, the 100 Best Companies to Work For list, and the Change the World list. She will also oversee the content for its robust executive conference business, which includes the FORTUNE Global Forum, the Most Powerful Women’s Summit, the CEO Initiative, and Brainstorm Tech, among others. She will also be responsible for content on its newest platforms, FORTUNE Connect and FORTUNE Education, as well as FORTUNE video, FORTUNE Podcasts and FORTUNE China.


FORTUNE was purchased by Chatchaval Jiaravanon in 2018, marking a new chapter of independence, innovation, and revenue for the brand. The company expects a 74% increase in digital revenue in 2021 over 2020, and a 121% increase since 2019. In 2020, FORTUNE launched a redesigned premium print magazine, website, and app, and an immersive on-demand video hub, all behind FORTUNE’s first tiered paywall, as well as a series of podcasts. After a quick pivot to a slate of all-virtual conferences, FORTUNE then launched Connect, an exclusive membership community and curated curriculum for mid-career professionals, which in its first year has gained over 1,000 members and over 20 enterprise partners.

In 2021, FORTUNE broke new ground with FORTUNE Education—rankings and articles for professionals ready to level up in their careers. And most recently, FORTUNE’s sale of a series of non-fungible tokens (NFTs), for 429 ETH (approximately $1.3 million at time of sale), allowed FORTUNE to further its mission of making business better through journalism by funding the FORTUNE Journalism PleasrFund, dedicated to advancing independent investigative journalism and programs that foster interest in sound reporting and journalistic integrity.

Alyson Shontell joins FORTUNE from Insider, where she was a member of their founding team in 2008, and has served as Editor In Chief since 2016. As a tech correspondent at Insider, Shontell was among the first to cover some of today’s tech giants, writing investigations and breaking news about Pinterest, Tinder, Instagram, Uber, Snap and more. She was promoted to Senior Correspondent, and then Executive Editor, at which point she launched the Tech Insider spin-out site.

Of Shontell’s new role at FORTUNE, CEO Alan Murray says, “Alyson is the perfect person to position FORTUNE for its second century. She has a deep love of great journalism and storytelling. She has overseen award-winning coverage of some of the most important business stories of our time. She is rooted in the tech world, which is the fundamental driver of almost everything happening in business today. And she is a true digital native. As employee number six at Business Insider, she helped shape and build the most successful pure play digital business journalism franchise of our time, and we look forward to seeing what she’ll accomplish at FORTUNE.”

Shontell adds, “FORTUNE is the premiere brand in business journalism. I’m thrilled to join this prestigious newsroom and work with the executive team to transform FORTUNE into a digital powerhouse.”

A graduate of Syracuse University’s Newhouse School of Public Communications, where she majored in psychology and advertising, Shontell is a judge for the prestigious Gerald Loeb Awards in business journalism, and has been named one of Min’s Rising Stars in Media, as well as Folio’s 2017 Top Women in Media.

When she was named Editor in Chief of Business Insider, she became the youngest person and only woman to run a global business publication at the time. Shontell has since doubled their newsroom staff to 200 during her tenure, helped launch a lucrative paywall, and has grown their business division to tens of millions of monthly readers, all while assigning and overseeing award-winning features recognized by the Gerald Loeb Awards, the Society of American Business Editors and Writers, and the New York Press Club.

FORTUNE’s former Editor in Chief, Clifton Leaf, announced that he was stepping down from the role in his forward to the June/July 2021 issue of the magazine. Deputy Editor Brian O’Keefe has served as Acting Editor in Chief in the interim.

For more information, visit

About FORTUNE   
FORTUNE drives the conversation about business. With a global perspective, the guiding wisdom of history, and an unflinching eye to the future, we report and reveal the stories that matter today-and that will matter even more tomorrow. With the trusted power to convene and challenge those who are shaping industry, commerce and society around the world, FORTUNE lights the path for global leaders-and gives them the tools to make business better. For more information, visit  

Media Contact:
Alison Klooster

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