Creative Loafing Atlanta Announces New Editor-in-Chief

Plus, there's a new News Editor in the house

ATLANTA – Debbie Michaud has been named Editor-in-Chief and Thomas Wheatley has been promoted to News Editor at Creative Loafing Atlanta, the Southeast’s largest altweekly, Publisher Sharry Smith announced this morning.

“I’m so proud to be able to promote from within for these two positions,” Smith said. “I am confident in the leadership Debbie and Thomas have proven in their time here at Creative Loafing. The different perspectives they have on Atlanta, in culture and news, and the commitment Debbie and Thomas have given to CL reflect what they have in store for the paper.”

Michaud has been a part of the Creative Loafing team since joining as the Events Editor in 2006. Since then, Michaud has been promoted to Arts and Culture editor and Senior Editor, and elevated coverage and the profile of the Atlanta arts scene. Two of her former staff members won first place awards for writing by the Association of Alternative Newsmedia in 2011 and 2012. Michaud is a magna cum laude graduate of the University of Georgia, and has written for, Art Papers, Flagpole, and in August of 2012 published Wallpaper* City Guide – Atlanta, a highly curated insider’s guide to Atlanta focusing on the city’s artistic, cultural, design and architectural highlights.

“I’m thrilled to be asked to lead such a talented group of young, passionate journalists,” says Michaud. “I love Atlanta. It’s my home, my city, my family. There’s an inspiring entrepreneurial spirit in Atlanta that makes it an exciting place to live and work as a journalist. Moving forward, we’re going to do a lot of hard work and have a lot of fun doing it.”

Thomas Wheatley joined CL as a staff writer in September 2007 covering the transportation, environment, and urban development beats. The Atlanta native’s 2008 CL cover story “Sober” was awarded second place in the Association of Alternative Newsmedia Awards in the feature story (above 50,000) category. He placed third in the nation in the 2004 Hearst Journalism Awards for his profile of pigeon racers, which appeared in Flagpole, Athens, GA.’s altweekly. His writing has also appeared in Next American City and the North Fulton Neighbor, where he worked as a staff writer after graduating from the University of Georgia. He lives in Decatur with his wife Capucine and two cats/life coaches Lorenzo and Rupert.

Wheatley says, “I’m terrible at soundbites, so I will say only this: I’m incredibly honored to be named News Editor of CL, which I started reading when I was a wee lad. I’ve always believed that CL can play a key role in how Atlantans stay informed and become involved in the issues that affect their lives. Any way I can help that process, I’m happy to do so, and I can’t wait to help Debbie carry out her plans.”

ABOUT CL ATLANTA: Creative Loafing Atlanta and its website are Atlanta’s leading sources of information about life in the city. The newspaper was founded in 1972 and reaches a total audience of more than 748,000. It is owned by SouthComm.

ABOUT SOUTHCOMM: SouthComm is the second-largest publisher of alt weeklies in the nation, owning 8 of America’s leading city weeklies – Creative Loafing Atlanta, Creative Loafing Charlotte, the Washington City Paper, Creative Loafing Tampa, the Nashville Scene, Cincinnati City Beat, Louisville Leo, and the Kansas City Pitch . Its holdings also include websites associated with those newspaper properties and the Digital Advertising Network.