Monadnock Ledger-Transcript Publisher Heather McKernan has been hired as the next publisher of the Concord Monitor, but she won’t leave behind the paper and community she loves.
McKernan, a Peterborough resident, will begin her tenure as publisher of the Monitor in early May, but will continue to serve as the Ledger-Transcript’s publisher.
“I still intend to be very involved at the Ledger-Transcript and in the greater Monadnock region,” said McKernan, in an interview Wednesday afternoon. “I’m excited for the new opportunity. It will certainly be a challenge.”
McKernan’s new position will not be her first at the Monitor, a sister paper to the Ledger-Transcript.
Prior to coming to the Ledger-Transcript as publisher in 1995, McKernan was hired as the Monitor’s human resources manager in 1989 and later served as the Monitor’s controller.
McKernan, 52, is the first female publisher for the Monitor in its 153-year history, a “historic moment” for her.
“I’m thrilled to be in a position to make a difference,” said McKernan.
McKernan has an MBA and a master’s degree in journalism from Syracuse University, as well as a bachelor’s degree in writing from St. Lawrence University.
“This is a tremendous opportunity to be a part of the newspaper of tomorrow and help shape what that will be,” said McKernan.
Working as publisher of two New Hampshire newspapers will present a lot of challenges, according to McKernan.
The papers will continue to work together, said McKernan, who said the two papers will develop efficiencies and share talents.
As a publisher at the Ledger-Transcript and the Monitor, McKernan will oversee each paper’s business side and help serve each region’s readers.
Despite working for both papers, McKernan said Ledger-Transcript readers shouldn’t notice much difference.
“Any changes will be positive — or our readers will let us know,” McKernan said.
The Ledger-Transcript will maintain its focus on quality journalism, she said.
“I remain committed to my work in Peterborough and will continue to work with the staff to put out the best paper possible for the Monadnock region,” said McKernan.
McKernan said she has wanted to work in the newspaper industry since her undergraduate days in New York state, a sentiment that was echoed during various interning stints as a reporter and a copy editor.
“Since junior year in college — I worked that summer as a copy editor ... there was no question about whether I would be in newspapers. The question was just about where and how,” she said. “When I went to Peterborough, that was my dream job. Now I get to have two dream jobs.”
McKernan is taking over for current publisher David Sangiorgio, who will shift to vice president of NNExt Media, a subsidiary of Newspapers of New England which is the parent company of the Monitor and the Ledger-Transcript.
Newspapers of New England owns the Ledger-Transcript, the Monitor, and several other newspapers in New Hampshire and Massachusetts.
Information from a Concord Monitor article by David Brooks was used in this report.
Nicholas Handy can be reached at 924-7172 ext. 235 or firstname.lastname@example.org. He is also on Twitter @nhandyMLT.