DETROIT — After 20 years as publisher of Plastics News, Anthony J. Eagan will be stepping down as head of the weekly newspaper effective Jan. 1.
Eagan will be replaced by Brennan Lafferty, who was most recently publisher of a sister newspaper, Waste & Recycling News.
Plastics News and its parent company, Crain Communications Inc., have announced additional changes, including a pending move to Detroit for PN.
Eagan, whose titles are vice president and publisher, joined PN as eastern regional sales manager in 1989 — he was one of the newspaper's original employees. He was later promoted to national sales manager, and he became PN's publisher in 1993, when Lowell G. "Chris" Chrisman retired.
Eagan will assist as Lafferty transitions into the new role.
"It's pretty amazing when you look back at where we were in 1989. Plastics News has made great strides over the years and I'm proud to have played a role in our growth," Eagan said. "I've been very fortunate to have some really talented people here with me."
Lafferty has worked for Crain for 17 years, including the last three as publisher of Waste & Recycling News. He has a background in both the commercial and editorial sides of the business — he was previously WRN's managing editor and then eastern sales manager.
"Tony and his team have built an incredible brand at Plastics News. I'm excited and honored for the opportunity to expand our business," Lafferty said. "Our backbone is our strong print product. But our incredible staff will also deliver more data digitally and focus more efforts on live events where our customers can spend time networking and exchanging ideas," Lafferty said.
"We're also looking forward to increased collaboration with our Crain colleagues at European Plastics News and Plastics & Rubber Weekly," he said. "This is a global brand and we have so much opportunity at our fingertips."
The move to Detroit will take place over the next few months, after the K show in Düsseldorf, Germany — where PN, European Plastics News and PRW are producing print show dailies.
Plastics News will continue to be a weekly print publication, in addition to offering conferences as well as multiple online and data products.
"Plastics News is one of our key brands, thanks to Tony's hard work and leadership," said KC Crain, group publisher and vice president. "Brennan has a fresh perspective. He brings a unique understanding of our focus on rich editorial products and our need to deliver amazing marketing vehicles for our customers. I'm excited to watch PN grow and flourish."
The move to Detroit places Plastics News at the headquarters of Crain Communications among fellow Crain business titles such as Automotive News, Crain's Detroit Business and AutoWeek. In Detroit, Plastics News will take advantage of the company's video production studio. The move also allows PN to centralize resources such as print production and information technology.
Key members of the PN leadership team remain in place. These include associate publisher Robert Grace, editor Don Loepp and advertising director J.A. Lewellen.