Hearst Magazines has appointed Samira Nasr as editor-in-chief of the U.S. edition of Harper’s Bazaar. She is the first person of color to hold the title in the fashion magazine’s 153-year history.
Nasr was most recently executive fashion director at Vanity Fair, where she managed and directed the magazine's fashion department and all fashion content, including styling covers.
As editor of Harper’s Bazaar, she will oversee content strategy and development across the brand’s print and digital platforms.
Nasr will report to Hearst Magazines Chief Content Officer Kate Lewis. She begins her new role July 6.
This appointment comes as rival magazine publisher Condé Nast grapples with former and current staff claiming they were discriminated against, due to their race.
Adam Rapoport, the longtime top editor of Condé Nast's food magazine Bon Appétit, resigned this week under pressure from staff. Bon Appétit assistant editor Sohla El-Waylly claimed the company pays only the white editors who appear in popular test kitchen videos. Condé Nast has since denied that claim.
Condé Nast isn’t the only
publisher to be dealing with internal complaints.
Stan Wischnowski, executive editor of The Philadelphia Inquirer, James Bennet, editor of The New York Times opinion section, and Christene Barberich, editor of millennial women’s lifestyle site Refinery29, all resigned recently after uprisings from staff.
“As the proud daughter of a Lebanese father and Trinidadian mother, my worldview is expansive and is anchored in the belief that representation matters,” Nasr says in a video shared on Hearst’s social-media channels.
In the video, Nasr suggests expanding the coverage of the fashion magazine: “I believe that Harper's Bazaar can deliver the best in fashion, all while being a place where community can come together to celebrate art, music, pop culture and also learn about the important issues that we as women are facing today, such as the fight for human rights, our reproductive rights and the hurdles we face as we fight for equity in the workplace.”
She also gave her support to the "Black Lives Matter" movement.
This role marks a homecoming to Hearst Magazines for Nasr, who was fashion director at Elle for five years. Prior to that, she was style director for InStyle.
In a statement, Nasr added: “It is a tremendous privilege to be entrusted with moving this legacy brand into a new era — one that is colorful, inclusive and celebrates the beauty of fashion on every platform.”
Nasr succeeds Dame Glenda Bailey, who served as top editor after nearly 19 years in the role. She stepped down in March to become a global consultant at Harper’s Bazaar.
Last year, Harper's Bazaar had a circulation of around 762,000.