The Wall Street Journal has promoted Barbara Chai to managing editor of Speakeasy, its culture and entertainment blog, global arts editor Eben Shapiro announced in an email to staff this afternoon. Ms. Chai, who started as a news intern at the Journal in 1998, has been the news editor of Speakeasy since 2012.
Mr. Shapiro’s memo below:
I’m delighted to announce the appointment of Barbara Chai as managing editor of Speakeasy, the WSJ’s popular home for real-time coverage of entertainment, media, celebrity and the arts.
Barbara has played an essential role in making Speakeasy one of the WSJ’s most-viewed blogs and an influential force in the world of digital culture coverage. She herself has written many of the site’s most popular stories, on subjects ranging from Ian McKellen’s take on Beckett to Jack White’s friendship with Bob Dylan. She’s also one of our successful pioneers in video and social media.
Barbara is a digital native of the WSJ. She started as a news intern on WSJ.com in 1998 and worked as a WSJ.com news editor in Hong Kong and Brussels, where she also served as deputy bureau chief of the site’s international desk. More recently, Barbara worked with the team that launched the premium verticals WSJ Pro and CFO Journal. In 2012, she was named a news editor for Speakeasy.
She holds an MFA in creative writing from Hollins University and a degree in politics from New York University. She also speaks Mandarin.
Please join me in congratulating Barbara.
P.S. She welcomes your pitches for Speakeasy.