The Business Journal’s editor-in-chief, Charles Crumpley, has left the news operation after 18 years with the organization.
Hannah Welk, who has been a managing editor, has been promoted to interim editor.
“It has been an honor and a true pleasure to work here,” Crumpley said. “Journalism allows you to collaborate with talented, creative people under a ticking clock to accomplish your goal, and that is exhilarating. Time kept zooming by. Have I really been here all these years?”
Crumpley said he does not plan to retire but will take some time to explore his next step. The change is in effect: Crumpley’s last day was Friday; Welk became editor on Monday.
“I feel really good about this change,” Crumpley said. “The team is strong. Hannah has been managing editor more than a year and is a natural leader. I know she will excel in her new post.”
Josh Schimmels, the Business Journal’s publisher and chief executive, shares, “I’ve had the honor of working with Charlie in various capacities since 2010. His professionalism and dedication to the art of the story is unparalleled. Like the true leader he is, he’s positioned the editorial team to succeed for years to come. He’s been invaluable the past two years while we merged our two papers’ operations. To best use Charlie’s own terms, I give him a ‘tip of the hat’ and congratulate him for all that he’s done throughout our industry.”
Crumpley began his career as a reporter and eventually became a senior writer for the Kansas City Star, where he won several national honors including an Overall First Place Award, a kind of grand prize, from the National Press Club in 1987. He was the second reporter in the country to be embedded with the FDIC as it planned and executed the closing of an insolvent bank. Also, in 1990-91 he was a Fulbright scholar to Japan, and for years afterward Fulbright appointed him to selection committees, and he chaired several, to choose the next generation of foreign scholars.
Crumpley went on to be the business news editor at two metro daily newspapers, also working as a local television news commentator at one. He left his last post as business editor at the New Orleans Times-Picayune in late 2005 to be the editor of the Los Angeles Business Journal.
In his first stint as editor, which lasted 10 years, the Business Journal won the Best Newspaper award for large tabloids six times from the Alliance of Area Business Publishers, the main organization of business journals and other local and state-based business news publications. A different journalism organization, the Society of American Business Editors and Writers, once gave the Business Journal an award called the Best of the Best, a kind of grand prize.
In early 2016 Crumpley became editor and publisher of the sister publication, the San Fernando Valley Business Journal. It routinely won the Best Newspaper award for small tabloids from the alliance of business news publishers. Crumpley also won two awards for local civic leadership including a Star of the Valley honor in 2021 from the Valley Economic Alliance, presented by then-mayor Eric Garcetti.
When the two newspapers combined operations in March 2022, Crumpley became editor-in-chief of both publications to see the editorial staff through the transition. Last year, the Los Angeles Business Journal won the Best Newspaper award for large tabloids from the alliance while the San Fernando Valley Business Journal won for small tabloids.
“Charlie has been an amazing editor and mentor to me and to countless other journalists over the years,” Welk said. “We are sad to see him leave but will continue to build upon the foundation he has created for the Business Journal as a must-read publication for L.A.’s business community.”
Welk is a USC alum. After graduating, she became a business reporter at the Orange County Register. Welk has freelanced for various publications including The Real Deal and Crain’s before joining the Business Journal in 2018 as a real estate reporter. She was promoted to managing editor in 2022.
“I am incredibly excited for the opportunity to lead the Business Journal,” she said. “For more than 40 years, the Business Journal has served the community, telling stories of the people and companies that make up L.A. I’m thrilled to continue to build upon the publication’s impressive legacy.”