With more than 25 years of experience in a variety of publishing disciplines, Mr. Johnston brings a unique perspective and passion to the media industry. Having served in markets across the country, his experience includes that of photojournalist, print and digital designer, IT specialist, classified advertising sales manager, audience development manager, digital media business leader and Publisher. In his current role as Chief Operating Officer for the Pioneer News Group, Eric oversees operations for the privately-held company’s two-dozen daily and weekly titles in the Pacific Northwest.
Before joining the Pioneer News Group, Eric served as the Publisher and President of The Modesto Bee and the Merced Sun-Star, McClatchy Company newspapers located in California’s San Joaquin Valley. Through his career, Eric has been at the front edge of a number of industry-changing initiatives, including the development, integration and maturation of online business models, the introduction of digital photography and pagination into the newspaper production environment and ongoing workflow and process improvements including regionalized editing, design and customer service operations.
A graduate of California State University, Fresno, Eric holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism and lives in Seattle, WA with his wife Susan. They have two daughters: Brittany, a US Navy veteran and nursing student and Morgan, a recent graduate of California State University, Chico. Eric also serves as a member of the Board of Directors for the Local Media Association and has served in leadership capacities for a variety of industry and community-service organizations.