Founded in 1909, Condé Nast publications in New York City is the leading international publisher of upmarket magazines in the world. Within the US alone, it produces 18 consumer magazines, including Vanity Fair, Vogue and GQ.
In the 103-years history of the publication house, they have never appointed an African American to head of a magazine. That is, until Keija Minor (her first name is pronounced “Kee-yah”) broke through the glass ceiling back in September 2012.
Considering that the magazine industry has only had a handful of non-white editors heading mainstream titles, her achievement is quite a milestone.
“I’m going to continue focusing on giving readers a lot of ideas and inspiration,” Minor said. “The goal is to find the best in beauty, fashion and style to give our readers the best [wedding] day they can have.”
After graduating from Howard University School of Law and spending four years handling the legality of commercial transactions, Minor found her passion elsewhere.
She followed her heart and took a large pay cut just so that she could work in the magazine industry. From there, she worked her way up in editing positions for a handful of magazines before joining Brides a little over a year ago.
According to The Washington Post, Minor is honored and thrilled by the distinction, but, of course, it’s back to business as usual. She said that her goal is to produce a magazine that “reflects all of our readers.” Brides has a large demographic when it comes to readership, with 40 percent identifying as African American or Latino.
Unfortunately, in the 78 years it has been in circulation, the publication has rarely showcased women of color on the cover. With Minor as the new leading lady, there may be some changes to watch out for in the coming months.
Regardless of the fact that diversity in the media has become more prevalent in the past four decades, the magazine industry appears to be lagging when it comes to allowing people of color to earn the distinction of making it to the top of an editorial masthead.