Gannett names Brian Priester president of the Detroit Free Press and Michigan.com
Rebecca Poynter Steckler, currently Senior VP, Sales and Marketing of Michigan.com, succeeds Priester as president of Gannett Mid-Michigan and of the Lansing State Journal
MCLEAN, Va. – July 13, 2016 — The Domestic Publishing division of Gannett Co., Inc. named Brian Priester, formerly president of Gannett Mid-Michigan and president of the Lansing (Mich.) State Journal, president of the Detroit Free Press and Michigan.com. He succeeds Joyce Jenereaux, publisher and president of the Detroit Free Press and president of Michigan.com, effective Aug. 1. Jenereaux is retiring after a 26-year career with Gannett.
In addition, Domestic Publishing announced Rebecca Poynter Steckler, senior vice president, Sales and Marketing of Michigan.com for the Detroit market area, will succeed Priester as president of Gannett Mid-Michigan and president of the Lansing State Journal, also effective Aug. 1.
“In Lansing, Brian has distinguished himself as one of Gannett’s top presidents,” said John Zidich, president of Domestic Publishing. “He has been active with Joyce managing the company strategy for all of Michigan and understands our Detroit business and the community, which will enable a smooth transition in that market. Rebecca, also, will be an asset to our Lansing operation, bringing a wealth of knowledge about multimedia advertising sales and business-to-business marketing.”
“We are pleased to welcome Brian to the Detroit market and promote Rebecca. Brian brings great experience, energy and a passion for Michigan to his new leadership position. Likewise, Rebecca, with her strong background in sales and marketing, will be a good fit for the Lansing market. Both Brian and Rebecca look forward to becoming active members of their local and professional communities,” said Michael G. Kane, president/East Group, Domestic Publishing. “Additionally, we thank Joyce for her outstanding leadership and wish her the best in retirement.”
Priester has overseen operations at the Lansing State Journal, Lansing Community Newspapers, Port Huron Times Herald, Battle Creek (Mich.) Enquirer, Livingston Daily Press and Argus and the Observer & Eccentrics (Detroit area weeklies). During his 28-year career in the media business, he served as president and publisher of the Statesman Journal in Salem, Ore., and held various positions at the Indianapolis Star, the Argus Leader in Sioux Falls, S.D., and the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Priester has been active in the Lansing community. He currently serves as vice chair of the board of trustees for the Capital Region Community Foundation and is on the Lansing Economic Area Partnership Board of Directors. His previous board service included the Capital Area United Way and Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce. He is an eight-time winner of Gannett President’s Rings, which recognize excellent performance. Priester has a Bachelor of Science in Political Science and a master’s degree in Communication from the University of Central Missouri. Priester and his wife, Sara, have three children.
Steckler’s first media industry sales job was as a sales representative for Detroit Media Partnership in 1997. Her career path took her to Gannett’s Army Times Publishing Co., USA TODAY, and to the Lexington (Ky.) Herald Leader. She returned to Detroit in 2007 as vice president of Vertical Sales and was named Senior Vice President of Advertising in 2008.
She earned a degree in journalism from the University of Kentucky. Prior to her first position with Gannett, she worked for The Coca-Cola Company. Rebecca’s community involvement in the Detroit area includes serving on the Focus: HOPE Board of Directors where she is an active board member acting as the Chair of The Development Committee, and Head Start Program. She also serves on the board of MNI, the marketing affiliate of the Michigan Press Association.