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Editor Out at AOL Black Voices

July 14, 2007 by  
Filed under News

Nick Charles Is Third Leader to Go Since March

(Akiit.com) Less than four months after the general manager and publisher of the Web site AOL Black Voices stepped Nick Charles down, Nick Charles, the Web site’s editor-in-chief, left abruptly this week, Charles confirmed on Friday.

“I’m weighing a couple of things,” Charles told Journal-isms, saying he could not discuss the circumstances of his departure.

Staffers are reporting to Mike Rich, a white AOL executive who is vice president and general manager of entertainment for AOL Music, AOL Radio, AOL Television and Moviefone.com, a Black Voices staff member said.

“I’m taking a little break,” Charles said. “It’s been a wonderful two years. The staff was excellent. My team will continue to keep Black Voices the No. 1 site.”

Charles has called AOL Black Voices the top Web destination for black viewers, but BET.com also claims that distinction.

Charles, who began his journalism career in 1985, came to AOL Black Voices in 2005 after leaving a job as press secretary for the New York mayoral campaign of Manhattan Borough President C. Virginia Fields, a Democrat.

When Charles was named, Janet Rollé, the vice president and general manager, said in a news release: “We are excited to have Nicholas join AOL Black Voices and are confident that through his far-reaching editorial experience — having covered news, culture, lifestyle, business, sports, politics and entertainment for diverse publications — he will significantly contribute to the growth of the AOL Black Voices brand.

“Most recently, Charles was the Founding Editor In Chief of the Toyota & Jungle Media Group culture/lifestyle magazine, Forward, responsible for the conceptualization and design of the 60-page title.

“Before that, he was a Staff Writer for the New York Daily News writing feature articles and cultural criticism, plus a weekly column on pop culture. In addition, he served as a human interest and features writer for People magazine.”

As reported in March, Rollé and Alvin Bowles, its publisher, left for BET Networks, following the departure of a number of journalists at the popular Web site.

In April, Rollé became BET’s executive vice president and chief marketing officer and Bowles, senior vice president, integrated marketing.

AOL BlackVoices was created in 2004, combining three former Web sites: Black Voices, AOL Black Focus and Africana.com.


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