AAN Names Tiffany Shackelford As Executive Director

After an extensive search, the Association of Alternative Newsweeklies has selected Tiffany Shackelford as its Executive Director.

Shackelford comes to AAN with a solid grasp of online media, a history of raising money from journalism foundations, and a substantial amount of association management experience. She will take helm of the association — which currently consists of 132 member papers across the U.S. and Canada — on November 2.

In 1999, Shackelford helped to found Capitolbeat, the Association of Capitol Reporters and Editors, where she has been serving as Executive Director for the past two and a half years.

In addition to running Capitolbeat, she has been working as the Communications Director for Phase2 Technology, a web development firm focused on open-source technology for publishing, open government and public policy. She is also extremely active within the Online News Association and has played a key role in organizing the 2010 ONA Conference taking place in Washington, D.C. later this month.

Previously, Shackelford spent eight years at Stateline.org, a non-profit news website funded by the Pew Charitable Trust, where she worked as Assistant Managing Editor and was responsible for launching a new web publishing platform and developing a monetization strategy for the organization’s website.

“What her resume doesn’t tell you is that Tiffany is dynamic, energetic, a pathological networker and imbued with a marvelous sense of humor,” says AAN President Mark Zusman. “She is a longtime reader of alt-weeklies, has passion for our work, and her references are stellar.”

Shackelford was chosen to lead AAN in a unanimous vote by the association’s Hiring Committee, which consisted of Amy Austin (Washington City Paper), Christine Oreskovich (The Coast), Paula Routly (Seven Days), Scott Spear (Village Voice Media), Fran Zankowski (Colorado Springs Independent), Bradley Zeve (Monterey County Weekly), and Mark Zusman (Willamette Week).

AAN’s previous Executive Director, Richard Karpel, departed last November.

During a visit to the AAN office yesterday, the gregarious Shackelford said that she intends to raise the organization’s profile and aggressively market the work of its member publications.

“Alt-weeklies have been delivering top-notch journalism since their inception,” she said. “We need to increase public awareness of the fine publications AAN represents. I’m also confident that by utilizing smart tech tools, we can take their coverage, which has always been cutting edge, and push it to the next level.”