Josh Quittner is more than my ex-boss: he is a friend who has always been there for me, whenever I needed guidance, a shoulder to cry on and someone to go out tear into Pakwaan’s awesome lamb chops. (Well less of those chops since my makeover.) Josh is a quintessential startup guy and I have often wondered, when he would leave the safe confines of big media and come to the right side.
Well now he has – he is joining Flipboard as their editorial director. He is going to be based in New York – because, well that is where all the big media, though at the rate they are shrinking, they may not be big for too long.
I love that he is going to go and work with Mike McCue, who is perhaps one of my most favorite entrepreneurs, mostly because he is always calm and always smiling. When I asked Q if he was moving back – he gave me the bad news. No, he is staying put in New York.
“I’ll be like the George Clooney character, up in the air all the time, shuttling from one coast to another,” he wrote to me in an email.
Ironically, another one of my colleagues from Business 2.0 days has left the safe confines of Fortune/Time Inc. and slowly the threads that bound me to my former employer are fraying. Josh, much success to you in your new gig. I know you are going to be awesome.
Time Inc’s John Huey’s Memo about Q’s exit (below the fold)
I want to let you know that Josh Quittner has decided to realize his long-held dream of jumping on the Silicon Valley startup train. Specifically, he will soon be leaving us to join Flipboard.
It’s a fitting moment to recall Josh’s unusual history at, and substantial contributions to, Time Inc.
Recruited by Walter Isaacson in the mid-90’s as the first writer to cover the internet exclusively, Josh later worked as an editor of the Netly News at Pathfinder, our original web mega offering. After that, he was editor of TIME.com, then of Time Digital Magazine, which became On Magazine during the AOL era, and then moved to San Francisco to edit Business 2.0, which is probably where he caught this startup virus that has now resurfaced.
He was an early advocate of digital thinking at Time Inc. As a writer at TIME and FORTUNE, Josh wrote the 1999 Person of the Year profile of Jeff Bezos and penned covers on digital privacy, Apple’s rebound in 2002 and, more recently, the advent of the tablet age. Not coincidentally, he also was a key member of the team that got us involved in the tablet age.
As much as we’ll miss Josh and his colorful personality in both the News and Sports Groups, we shouldn’t miss a beat digitally: Terry McDonell continues to lead digital innovation on all formats at SI, while Jim Frederick, Dan Roth, Chris Peacock, and, of course, John Cantarella are launching new apps and ideas on a regular basis at the News Group.
I’m sure we’ll continue to do business with Josh down the road. I, for one, sincerely wish him all the very best in his new venture.