After serving as Pride Source Media Group's Entertainment Editor and the Editor of Q Syndicate, the national LGBTQ+ wire service, Chris Azzopardi has been named the company's new Editorial Director. The announcement comes as he approaches his 15-year anniversary with the company this May.
Azzopardi, who began working for Pride Source and its print publication Between The Lines in 2006, has moved into the new director role over the last few months as former publishers Jan Stevenson and Susan Horowitz retired after 28 years. A new publisher and a former production manager for the company, Benjamin Jenkins, assumed ownership of the LGBTQ+ publishing network in January.
"I'm thrilled to continue to interview celebs and tell stories myself," Azzopardi said. "But I'm equally as excited to be able to recruit and collaborate with so many LGBTQ+ and BIPOC writers and voices I want to elevate and amplify in Pride Source, BTL and on Q Syndicate." He's inviting writers from both communities to pitch their stories.
"Chris' dedication to quality, nationally recognized journalism and storytelling has been a true asset to Pride Source," Jenkins said. "Having worked with him on developing the Pride Source publications for over a decade now, it's an absolute pleasure to see him step into this new position and guide our editorial going forward."
Azzopardi, who has also written for The New York Times, Vanity Fair and GQ, has been the editor of Q since 2009, when it was acquired by Pride Source. He spearheaded an opportunity to bring prominent voices in pop culture to regional LGBTQ+ press across the U.S. Publishers and publicists responded positively to Q's expanded interview offerings, and since then, he has interviewed top entertainers in music, film and TV, including Lady Gaga, Meryl Streep, Mariah Carey, Britney Spears, Dolly Parton and Beyoncé. Many of them have been exclusive to Pride Source and Q Syndicate.
During the pandemic, Pride Source launched a YouTube video channel, where Azzopardi has interviewed Dolly Parton, Leslie Jordan, Billy Porter, among others, on camera.
Before Azzopardi began working for Pride Source, he remembers being eager to pick up issues of BTL at Eastern Michigan University, where he graduated with his journalism degree in 2006. He said "it was a portal into a world I was just getting to know. It made me feel something I hadn't before — part of a community."