Philadelphia Magazine Announces New Editor Brian Howard, New Hires

Brian Howard, a veteran of the publication, has taken over the top editorial role. In addition, a new food editor, a new digital editor, and a new editorial assistant have been added to full-time staff.

Brian Howard is Philadelphia magazine’s new editor. Photograph by Claudia Gavin

In an email to staff recently, Chris Vogel, chief content officer of Metrocorp, the parent company of Philadelphia and Boston magazines, announced that Brian Howard has been named the next editor of Philly Mag.

Howard has spent more than 25 years working in Philly media — including prior stints at the City Paper, Grid magazine, and North American Publishing Company — in addition to freelancing for many outlets, including the Inquirer. He has been with Philly Mag for more than eight years, much of it as the digital news director and then features editor. Per Vogel: “A passionate journalist and talented storyteller, Howard has edited and written many award-nominated pieces, including our 2019 cover story, ‘Ouch,’ about the soaring cost of prescription drugs, which was honored as a National Magazine Awards finalist.”

Howard is an alum of La Salle University and Nazareth Area High School in Nazareth, Pennsylvania. He was Philly Mag’s interim editor during the fall of 2020 and had been serving as acting editor since January 2022.

“It’s a huge honor,” said Howard, “to get this opportunity, to be entrusted with the journalistic legacy and tradition of Philly Mag and to be counted on to lead the magazine into the future — to continue to expand our readership and move the company into new markets and new platforms.”

According to Ernest Owens, the magazine’s editor at large, “In the six years I’ve been at Philadelphia magazine, Brian has been one of the most dependable, creative and compassionate editors I’ve ever worked with. His impeccable attention to detail, cultural competency, and overall spirit for all things Philly have inspired me to be an even better journalist. He’s the best person to lead this publication at this time.”

“As we continue to adapt to the new ways our audience desires content,” said Vogel, “Philadelphia magazine’s edit team now has a proven media pro at the helm, ready to lead Philly Mag into a new era that pays tribute to the publication’s enduring legacy while increasing its influence and dedication to presenting our readers with unique and helpful content on whatever platform they seek it.”

The magazine has also announced a number of recent hires:

Shaunice Ajiwe has joined the staff as a full-time editorial assistant. A former intern at the magazine, a Temple grad, and a native of Prince George’s County in Maryland, Ajiwe has been a freelance contributor to the magazine’s print production team. In joining the staff full-time, she will also execute social media strategy and write for the company’s website and print products.

Hannah Albertine has started as the magazine’s next food editor. Albertine grew up in West Philadelphia and studied at Bates College in Maine. She spent the past four-plus years in New York, covering the restaurant scene for the Infatuation. She will edit and write for Foobooz, the magazine’s online food and drink hub, as well as the print products.

Laura Swartz has started as the magazine’s new digital editor. A native of Elkins Park and a graduate of Haverford College and Temple’s law school, she comes to the magazine from Philly Family magazine, where she was the editor. She will oversee content on and social media in addition to writing for the website and print products.

In other staff news, David Murrell has been promoted to senior staff writer for the magazine. Murrell, a Penn grad, is a former intern and previously was the magazine’s research editor and staff writer.