Big changes have come to The Bakersfield Californian's newsroom.
John Arthur, the newspaper's executive editor for the past 3 and a half years, has left the company, although he has agreed to handle special projects on a consulting basis. Arthur's last day as executive editor was Friday.
Robert Price, the newspaper's editorial page editor, will take over as executive editor. In his 25 years with the company, Price has served in an assortment of roles, including business reporter, government reporter, entertainment writer, Lifestyles editor and, for nine years, metro columnist. His weekly column will continue.
Price will still oversee the Opinion section; the position of editorial page editor will not be filled.
Digital Content Director Louis Amestoy has been promoted to the new position of director of audience development. Amestoy has been central to the company's live video-streaming partnership with American General Media, including the creation of First Look with Scott Cox and six other regularly scheduled shows that stream live on each week.
Amestoy has worked in digital roles at The Californian for the last two years but brings 17 years of experience from newspapers in Southern California including the San Bernardino Sun, where he was a senior editor, and Riverside's Press-Enterprise, where he oversaw that newspaper's video productions.
Price will report directly to Amestoy.
"It's been a privilege working with John Arthur for these 3-1/2 years," Price said in a statement. "He has been a model of integrity and professionalism, and he's a really great guy on top of it. We're all better for having watched him in action and we'll miss him."
Going forward, the newsroom will continue efforts to bring journalism content to different platforms, including mobile and video storytelling.
"We've got a feisty, hard-working group here that cares passionately about doing good journalism," Price said. "I am excited to be working alongside them as we try to present readers -- viewers and listeners too -- with information that educates, entertains and empowers."