Media Scene

Kansas journalist named Observer managing editor

Sherry Chisenhall, Wichita Eagle.
Sherry Chisenhall, Wichita Eagle. The Wichita Eagle

Sherry Chisenhall, a veteran journalist who oversees the newsroom of The Wichita Eagle, was named managing editor of The Charlotte Observer on Wednesday.

Chisenhall joined the Wichita paper 16 years ago after a 14-year career at the Observer as copy editor, page designer, regional bureau reporter, night city editor, assistant sports editor and education editor.

Chisenhall succeeds Cheryl Carpenter, who left in November to become chief of the Washington bureau for the McClatchy Co., which owns both the Observer and the Eagle.

It is the second time Rick Thames, the Observer’s executive editor, has hired Chisenhall – he brought her to Wichita in 2000 as his managing editor when he ran the Kansas daily. She succeeded him as editor and senior vice president/news of the Eagle and when he came to Charlotte in 2004.

He said Chisenhall led the Kansas newsroom to become a leader in digital publishing.

“Sherry is smart, capable and sure-footed,” Thames said in making the announcement to the newsroom. “She is a strong advocate of the public’s right to know.”

Chisenhall, who starts her new assignment June 27, grew up in East St. Louis and Troy, Ill. She graduated from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, with degrees in journalism and political science.

She is a trustee of the William Allen White Foundation, which supports the journalism school at the University of Kansas, and is on the advisory board of the Elliott School of Communication at Wichita State University. She’s a four-time Pulitzer Prize juror.

Mark Washburn: 704-358-5007, @WashburnChObs