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Hearst Summons Bay Area Reinforcements

Kara Swisher got the jump today on a big announcement about the San Francisco Chronicle. In an aggressive move to revive the fortunes of both the paper and website (SFgate.com), the parent company has hired a pair of media execs who will be very familiar to SoCal readers.

Demand Media’s Joanne Bradford is the Chronicle‘s new president, while former Los Angeles Times CEO Jeffrey Johnson has been tapped as publisher. From Swisher’s AllThingsD post:

While the Chronicle and its website is the largest for local news in the Bay area, it has lagged a lot in aggressively covering key trends — such as tech — and the fast growth of the region… Its daily print circulation is now 265,000, and combined with its website it reaches close to two million people.

Swisher, who suggests that the Chronicle will require major rebranding, points to Bradford’s successful stints with Microsoft, Yahoo and Businessweek magazine as hopeful signs. She also reveals that she and the new Chronicle president are close personal friends. Congrats to both Bradford and Johnson on this very exciting major news market opportunity.

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