Odell is said to be leaving to work on her second book and other projects. She is also the author of the book “Tales from the Back Row: An Outsider’s View from Inside the Fashion Industry.”
Pels was previously the website director at Hearst's Marie Claire, where she was hired in 2014. Her work on the site included overseeing in-depth reported features like one exploring the lives of women who are nuclear weapons guards.
In a story on Women’s Wear Daily, Kate Lewis, senior vice president and editorial director at Hearst Magazine Digital Media, stated of the new hire, “Jessica infused Marieclaire.com with passionate storytelling, and she will bring her unique energy and creativity to Cosmopolitan.com.”
Addressing Odell’s departure, Lewis stated, “She diversified content to include a wide range of topics, led an ambitious push into video, expanded the brand’s reach and developed talented teams to maximize content across platforms — some of which did not exist when she took the helm.”
A replacement for Pels at Marie Claire has not yet been announced.
Separately, Outside has promoted Scott Rosenfield to the role of digital general manager.
The role is newly created and Rosenfield will be responsible for overseeing the brand’s digital operations including content, audience growth and revenue.
Previously, Rosenfield had served as digital editorial director of the New Mexico-based title. He started at the company as an intern in 2012, and quickly rose through the editorial ranks.