Chelstowski back in the EW fold

Former national sales director returns as publisher

Time Inc.'s Entertainment Weekly is bringing back Ray Chelstowski as its new publisher. He will replace Scott Donaton, whose departure after a year and a half in the job was announced less than two weeks ago.

Chelstowski will inherit a magazine that has been struggling amid a punishing advertising climate that has stirred speculation about the title's survival. This year through April 24, ad pages there sank 33% to 256, while the Entertainment/Celebrity category declined 22%, according to the Mediaweek Monitor.

Paul Caine, president and group publisher of the Style & Entertainment Group, which includes EW, announced the appointment Monday. "Ray is a true professional with strong experience in all areas and mediums we are focused on," Caine wrote in a staff memo. "I am very excited to welcome Ray back to Time Inc., and I am confident that he, along with Jess (Cagle, editor), will lead this important brand into its 20th year and beyond."

Yet unlike Donaton, who had no consumer magazine publishing experience before EW, Chelstowski has deep roots in consumer as well as entertainment magazines.

He spent nine years at EW, during which he worked his way up the sales side to national sales director. He later went on to be publisher of Wenner Media's Rolling Stone until he was ousted last year. For the past seven months, he has been publisher of the newly launched Prestige New York, a U.S. edition of luxury magazine publisher Singapore-based CR Media.

Prestige, an oversized glossy that's sent for free to 50,000 of New York's super-rich, has only just gotten off the ground, having recently put out its first issue. The magazine is expected to name a replacement.