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Communications Board appoints the Daily Bruin’s incoming editor in chief

Current assistant news editor Jillian Beck was appointed as the Daily Bruin’s next editor in chief by the UCLA Communications Board.

By Ariana Ricarte and Fiona Kirby

April 10, 2013 7:50 a.m.

The UCLA Communications Board appointed Jillian Beck, a current assistant news editor for the Daily Bruin, as the editor in chief for the Daily Bruin for the 2013-2014 academic year on Tuesday night.

Beck, a third-year political science student, focused her platform on expanding The Bruin’s digital content and bolstering the paper’s relationship with the UCLA community.

Beck received the endorsement from The Bruin’s staff Friday evening and was formally appointed on Tuesday.

Current opinion editor Loic Hostetter and former arts and entertainment editor Andrew Bain also applied for the position.

“I really want to make the UCLA community know that we’re a public service, and we’re going to be here for them,” Beck said Tuesday night.

Some of her plans include developing more Daily Bruin mobile applications to provide new avenues of information for a Daily Bruin reader, and holding quarterly public forums.

The aim of the forums is to create a tangible space that fosters dialogue, rather than a top-down relationship with the community, Beck said.

Beck, campus editor for the news section this year, started working at the Daily Bruin the fall quarter of her second year.

As campus editor she has been responsible for coverage of the administration, student groups and the Undergraduate Students Association Council.

“Since day one (Beck) has been a great journalist, but most importantly she has shown she is dedicated to the community,” Hostetter said.

“The Bruin as a community paper will grow as a result.”

Erik Peña, chair of the Communications Board and a graduate student in the Latin American studies program, said the decision was a difficult one for the board.

But Beck stood out because of her concrete plans and her focus on reaching out to many different groups of people at UCLA, he said.

Beck said she first joined The Bruin on a whim, but fell in love as she started writing more for the paper.

“I’d never felt a purpose like this before,” she said. “It gave me a home and (another) family at UCLA.”

Her father Martin Beck, a journalist at the Los Angeles Times, said his daughter grew up in a house where there were always newspapers to read.

“We are very proud of her for stepping up to this big challenge,” Martin Beck said. “It seems like she really found her bliss.”

Arvli Ward, the UCLA Student Media director, said the biggest challenge the paper faces is readership, from both paper and digital mediums.

“(All the candidates) understand that we need a lot of screens to find the reader,” Ward said.

Still, the Communications Board wants to balance The Bruin’s digital news with a healthy print paper, he said.

Current editor in chief James Barragan, a fourth-year history student, said he believes Beck can take the paper through any future changes.

“She knows the pulse of this paper and she has a great grasp on social media,” Barragan said.

“This will help ease any adjustments The Bruin will face in the future.”

Beck said she would like to stay connected with the UCLA community as editor in chief.

“It is important that we are connected with the community, and that we can serve them and put out relevant content,” Beck said.

Email Ricarte and Kirby at [email protected] and [email protected].

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