The Daily Journal has hired a new managing editor as it transitions to replace the longtime leader of its newsroom.
Misty Knisely, of Galveston, Ind., who had served as the managing editor of the Pharos-Tribune in Logansport, Ind., from January 2013 through August 2016, began her new role on Tuesday. She is replacing veteran newsroom managing editor Mike Frey, who is retiring.
“Though I’ve only been here a short time, it’s been clearly evident that this is a newsroom team whose talent is matched only by its dedication,” Knisely said. “I’m excited for the opportunity to come alongside that team and continue the Daily Journal’s long history of strong community journalism.”
Frey will retire prior to year’s end. He has been a newsroom fixture since joining the newspaper as a sportswriter in April 1982. He served as assistant sports editor from 1990-95 and sports editor from 1996-99.
The Journal also promoted three members of the newsroom as part of the transition.
Frey moved to the news side where he served as metro editor from 1999-2012. He served as managing editor from 2012-15 and then from 2017 to present.
Rob Small, Small Newspaper Group president and CEO, described Frey as the newsroom’s “go-to” source for the staff to get the correct perspective on local personalities and happenings.
“His service has been long and more valuable than words can express. We wish him and his family well, and express profound thanks,” Small said.
Frey, 56, has agreed to continue writing editorials and work on special projects.
Sally Hendron, the company’s vice president of finance, noted Frey’s passion for solid, local journalism is second to none.
“He’s been both a mentor and friend to all who have worked with him. He’s decided after 37 years the time has come to retire. ... We are absolutely delighted he’s accepted the offer to still take on some roles for us,” she said. “No one has greater knowledge of this community than Mike Frey.”
In addition to the Logansport paper, Knisely, 41, an award-winning writer and page designer, served as metro editor for the Kokomo Tribune in Kokomo, Ind., from April 2004 to January 2013. Prior to Kokomo, she was assistant editor for the Hendricks County Flyer in Avon, Ind.
She earned her journalism degree from Ball State University in Muncie, Ind.
Since August 2016, Knisely has been the manager of marketing and communications with the Greater Kokomo Economic Development Alliance.
Good journalism, Small noted, is rooted in wisdom borne of experience. Knisley, he said, brings both breadth and depth of that virtue to the Journal.
“Her service with both the weekly and daily newspaper worlds ensures and underpins that kind of expertise. We, and the community, are lucky to have such a talent joining us.”
Hendron said Knisely has a great ability to guide reporters in conveying a story’s personal impact to readers.
“Her enthusiasm and experience in covering local markets is exemplary. Her ability to solve problems and improve performance and unlock value are both clear and demonstrated. She comes to us with a ‘How can I help?’ attitude,” Hendron said.
In addition to the managing editor transition, the Journal also promoted senior reporter Lee Provost, 56, to community editor; Business Editor Chris Breach, 59, to associate editor; and photographer Tiffany Blanchette, 29, to photo editor.
Hendron noted the newsroom leadership, love of community. family values and belief of local journalism from Breach and Provost were the reasons for their new roles.
“We are delighted to announce these promotions for these two who continue to cover and want what’s best for the community. They have a commitment not to just the profession, but to the community,” she said.
Regarding Blanchette, Hendron said her promotion is well deserved based on her hard work and dedication.
“Tiffany’s commitment has been outstanding across all of the Journal publications, including the newspaper, our special sections and the Lifestyle magazine.
“Many of her photos have won statewide awards, and we are excited about the future of our photojournalism under her guidance.”