Kari Borgen will assume leadership at EO Media Group’s North Coast operations on Dec. 1.
Borgen, 57, will be the group publisher and revenue director for the Seaside Signal, The Daily Astorian Cannon Beach Gazette, Chinook Observer and the regional Coast River Business Journal.
Borgen and her husband, Kerry, will relocate to the North Coast area. They have three grown children and enjoy the outdoors with their two dogs in their free time.
She is an Oregon native with deep roots in the media industry.
“I’m looking forward to joining the team, and meeting readers and businesses on the North Coast,” Borgen said. “It’s a beautiful and diverse landscape of communities with strong traditions, opportunities to grow and an appreciation for community journalism. We’re excited to become a part of it.”
Heidi Wright, EO Media Group’s chief operating officer, said Borgen rose to the top of a strong pool of candidates.
“We are very fortunate to have Kari join our company,” Wright said. “She has ties to Oregon and a passion for high-quality community newspapers.”
Borgen has a degree in business administration and marketing from the College of Idaho. She has worked for Western Communications, based in Bend, since 1998. Most recently, she served as its corporate revenue officer and regional publisher for the Baker City Herald and The Observer in La Grande. She enjoys engaging in the community and has served on the boards of the Baker County Community Literacy Coalition, Rotary, United Way, Red Cross and YMCA.
She will take over business operations from David Pero, plus assume direct management of advertising sales. Pero left the company on Tuesday and former Advertising Director Betty Smith’s position has been vacant since she retired at the end of June. Matt Winters, publisher and editor of the Chinook Observer and Coast River Business Journal, will report to Borgen.
“There is a precedent for what we are doing that can be found in our family’s ownership of the Astorian,” said Steve Forrester, president and CEO of EO Media Group. “In 1960, during Astoria’s prolonged postwar adjustment, my parents and my aunt hired a publisher out of Alaska, Morgan Coe. He was a business-side publisher. At the same time, the veteran newsman Fred Andrus was promoted to the role of editor.”
Following that model, Jim Van Nostrand is being promoted from the role of managing editor to editor. Derrick DePledge will become managing editor.
“All of this is about our family’s commitment to the future of this community daily newspaper at a time when traditional print media is adjusting to a new reality,” Forrester said. “In Kari, we have a proven leader who will help ensure our financial viability for the long term. In Jim and Derrick, we have newsroom professionals who will meet the challenge of engaging readers in print as well as digital platforms.”
Forrester added that the newest fourth-generation member of the company’s board of directors is his son, Harrison, elected in August. His daughter, Susan Rana, has served on the board for four years and is corporate treasurer.
Forrester will be in the Astoria offices Wednesday through Friday. Wright will spend much of November in Astoria until Borgen comes on board.