Samira Nasr is Appointed Harper’s Bazaar’s First-Ever Black Editor-in-Chief

Hearst Magazines has officially named Harper’s BAZAAR‘s first Black editor in chief in the publication’s 153-year-old history.

Beginning July 6, Samira Nasr will be overseeing content strategy and development across the brand’s print and digital platforms in her new role as the U.S. edition of Harper’s BAZAAR, editor in chief.  The title’s U.S. edition leadership move comes less than a week after the Hearst announced a fundraising effort for organizations fighting racial injustice. The publisher has said that it will match and double staff contributions up to $500,000.

Hearst President and CEO Steven R. Swartz and Hearst Magazines President Troy Young. Nasr will report to Hearst Magazines Chief Content Officer Kate Lewis.  With her master’s degree from New York University School of Journalism, Nasr is seeing a homecoming of sorts.  She was previously with the Hearst Communications conglomerate when she was the fashion director at ELLE.   

Nasir said, “At this particular moment in our nation’s history, I am honored to be at the helm of such an iconic brand,” when speaking on her new role.  Nasr was most recently executive fashion director at Vanity Fair, where she managed and directed the magazine’s fashion department and all fashion content, including styling iconic covers such as the 25th annual Hollywood issue, the spring style issue featuring cover star Lupita Nyong’o.

Unlike her predecessor, who only oversaw its print version, Nasr will run the brand’s website and magazine. “It is a thrilling challenge to be in a position to reimagine what a fashion magazine can be in today’s world,” Nasr said. “And I know that this position places me at a particular intersection that I do not take lightly. I cannot wait to get started, and I look forward to this new beginning with you,” she concluded.

“My lens by nature is colorful, and so it is important to me to begin a new chapter in Bazaar’s history by shining a light on all individuals who I believe are the inspiring voices of our time,” Nasr said in a taped announcement of her new role, in which she both acknowledged her own intersectionality and expressed gratitude for those leading the current protest movement, saying “I see you, I thank you, and I hope we can join forces to amplify the message of equality because black lives matter.”

In 2020 to still be celebrating first for Blacks in fashion is not surprising as people are holding many brands accountable for their lack of diversity in their C-Suite.  We see Vogue’s Anna Wintour now accepting responsibility’ for lack of diversity and ‘intolerant’ behavior at that publication.

Hearst Magazines is one of the world’s largest publishers of magazine media across all platforms, with more than 300 editions and 240 websites around the.  Founded: 1903 Hearst Communications, often referred to as Hearst, is an American mass media and business information company based in New York City.  The Hearst family remains involved in its ownership and management.

“I believe that Harper’s Bazaar can deliver the best in fashion, all while being a place where the community can come together to celebrate art, music, pop culture and also learn about the important issues that we as women are facing today,” Nasr said, “such as the fight for human rights, our reproductive rights and the hurdles that we face as we fight for equity in the workplace.”

Nasr explained she plans to continue the brand’s boundary-breaking legacy while focusing on diversity and inclusion.  The Canadian born media maven of Trinidadian and Lebanese descent resides in Brooklyn, New York, with her 7-year-old son.

LaToya Wright is the creator of and independent contributor.  Connect with her about lifestyle, beauty, and fashion topics at @fatgirl_fashion on Twitter.

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