From Black Voices — Angela Burt-Murray editor-in-chief of Essence magazine exited stage left today, resigning from her post after a five-year-run.
Apparently, Burt-Murray summoned her editors late this afternoon and made the big announcement that she was moving to Atlanta with her family. Insiders say Burt-Murray had actually laid the groundwork for her resignation last July and wanted to keep it under wraps.
At the time that Burt-Murray began her resignation process, the magazine was being burned at the stake for placing a white woman at the helm of its fashion department. African-American women were up in arms about Burt-Murray’s controversial decision to hire Ellianna Placas, who had previously worked at O: The Oprah Magazine andUS Weekly, as Essence’s fashion director. Essence was forced to deal with the cyber ire of black women on Facebook and other Afro-centric websites.
Despite the furor over the hiring of Placas, Burt-Murray stood her ground and did not sway in her decision one bit. Burt-Murray told Media Ink: “I understand that this issue has struck an emotional chord with our audience. However, I selected [Placas], who has been contributing to the magazine on a freelance basis for the last six months, because of her creativity, vision, the positive reader response to her work and her enthusiasm and respect for the audience and our brand. We remain committed to celebrating the unique beauty and style of African-American women in Essence magazine and online at Essence.com.”