RedState Names Leon Wolf Managing Editor As Erick Erickson Prepares Exit

The influential conservative writer will focus more on his radio career.
RedState Editor-in-Chief Erick Erickson is leaving the site.
RedState Editor-in-Chief Erick Erickson is leaving the site.
AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez

NEW YORK -- RedState named Leon Wolf as its new managing editor Monday as longtime editor Erick Erickson transitions out of his role leading the influential conservative news and opinion site.

Though Salem Media Group -- which bought RedState last year -- hasn't publicly commented on Erickson's status, there have been signs his tenure as editor (and the public face of the site) was coming to an end. Word that Erickson might leave RedState first surfaced in the kicker to an August profile pegged to RedState's annual conference, which featured nine Republican candidates.

The Huffington Post reported last month that Erickson would not be part of Salem's extensive Republican debate coverage, which included top writers from other sites it owns, such as Townhall and HotAir. Erickson has increasingly focused on his radio career with Cox Media Group, a Salem rival, and appeared on their airwaves during debate night.

Jonathan Garthwaite, vice president and general manager of Townhall Media, part of Salem Media Group, acknowledged Erickson's coming departure in a memo obtained by The Huffington Post.

"As a few of you know, Erick Erickson will be transitioning out of his role as Editor of RedState this Fall to focus more on his Atlanta radio show and other projects," Garthwaite wrote.

"RedState has been a labor of love of Erick's for over 10 years and it has been an immense pleasure to work with Erick over the past two years since we acquired RedState," he continued. "We cannot thank Erick enough for his leadership and tireless effort and really look forward to being allies with Erick fighting for the conservative ideals we share."

Erickson told The Huffington Post that he informed Salem in June about plans to focus primarily on his radio show and accompanying website after a decade running RedState. He said he’ll remain editor-in-chief through the end of year and still expects to write occasionally for the site after his departure. Erickson said he also plans to participate in next year’s RedState gathering.

In the memo, Garthwaite described Wolf as "earning more and more respect from readers with each passing year" that he's written for RedState.

"We have great expectations for RedState's growth in readership and influence during the critical months ahead for this country," he wrote. "This is an exciting time for RedState as we take the successes of 2015 and build on them during the 2016 election year and beyond."

Erickson also welcomed Wolf as managing editor in a Monday post, noting that Wolf was coming aboard as he's juggling "a new book coming out early next year, seminary, and more and more radio obligations."

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