Jim Busis, A man made for the strategic future of the Jewish Chronicle, Interim CEO, keeping it informative.
The Jewish Chronicle is very lucky as is any organization that strives to employ better than average people to do better than average jobs! Jim Busis is such a person. Well educated, vastly knowledgeable, and well traveled are just some of the traits that make Jim such a perfect CEO. Jim was educated at Yale and has held the helm of the Jewish Chronicle for the last 2 years.
Jim has worked oversees as well as the US. "I have had a long standing interest and involvement in Asia." He has held jobs in Singapore which is "one of the fastest growing economies in the world". Chicago, and Washington D.C. In Singapore where the Jewish population was a mere 800 including men, women, and children, Jim was successful in opening a new Synagogue which is still vital to this day.
In my short conversation I found Jim to be articulate, a person with great vision, and a person that thinks out of the box, a real strategic visionary. Jim has not just updated the JC but has changed the entire organization. He has downsized the working staff, cutting costs, and has increased subscribers! The Jewish Chronicle was a merger of two of Pittsburgh's original Jewish newspapers in 1962, The Jewish Chronicle and the Centurion, archives of both can be found online at CMU's Jewish Newspaper Project.
Jim mentions that the JC has more local and national coverage than in previous years. Although Jim is not the Editor-in-Chief, that job belongs to Joshua Runyan, Jim oversees all of it. His day to day workload includes, "what a normal CEO would do - everything: marketing, looking after daily operations, overseeing a daily and weekly product, JC on the web and the publishing of the newspaper," As to gathering the news the JC has 2 people on staff plus freelancers, and access to people in Baltimore and Washington DC.
When asked what Jim's hopes are for the future of the Jewish Chronicle he says that he sees the " JC as a central institution in this city for the Jewish community, to inform, engage, and connect people to each other and the community as a whole, and we want to vastly improve the size, and scope and quality of it so that we get a good solid majority of the community of the Jewish people in Pittsburgh reading and interacting with it and getting a lot of news and information from our products. And, we see the JC helping to support the strength and on-going growth of the community"
As with other informational sources the JC has many sections. I asked Jim which sections of the JC were his favorites: "I enjoy reading the op-eds and editorials, my second favorite section is probably the news, particularly the local news because we run stories that literally nobody else runs. We run stories that affect Jewish people which is something that nobody else publishes."
Jim has plans to update the web version of the JC to make it more user friendly. The site is very informative and as Jim mentions there are not only local stories, but news from around the world. As of the writing of this story, Israel is involved in yet another struggle as the toll mounts as Israel steps up Gaza air raids.
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