Who We Are

PEOPLE’s accomplished team of editors, writers, designers and photographers are all dedicated to the brand’s core mission: to inform, entertain and inspire by sharing the stories that everyone will be talking about. For nearly 50 years, the PEOPLE team has been comprised of trusted experts in nearly every field. We’re the go-to source for news about celebrities, entertainment and the royals, and we elevate powerful human interest stories and everyday people making a difference in their communities. With decades of experience and a true passion for the subjects we cover, our journalists believe in the power of storytelling to make a difference.

All About PEOPLE

PEOPLE delivers the most trustworthy celebrity news and captivating human interest stories, connecting you to the pulse of American culture. Since our first issue hit stands in 1974, we have been striving to tell compelling stories about the people behind the issues, as opposed to just the issues themselves. We are your everyday escape, taking you inside the lives of intriguing stars, newsmakers, up-and-comers and ordinary people doing extraordinary things. We serve and delight you by providing ideas about beauty, food and style through the lens of the people influencing the trends. And we are a force for good by telling stories of hope, optimism and kindness that drive conversation and inspire action.

Editorial Policy

If you read it on PEOPLE, you know it is true. PEOPLE is committed to accurate, fair and complete journalism. As part of the Dotdash Meredith publishing family, we uphold the Dotdash Meredith Content Integrity Promise.

Click here for our full Editorial Policy.

Click here for our Terms of Use page.

ChatGPT & Other AI

At PEOPLE, we are committed to providing the highest quality content, created by a trusted group of human writers, reporters and editors with our audience in mind. It is against our guidelines to publish automatically generated content that has been written by AI (artificial intelligence) tools such as ChatGPT.

Diversity & Inclusion

PEOPLE is committed to taking visible, measurable steps to combat racism, sexism and other biases in the media. Our definition of diversity, and the areas in which we seek to increase inclusivity and representation, includes race, culture, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, body type and ability.

We will enlist Dotdash Meredith’s Anti-Bias Review Board to do a thorough review of our content on a consistent basis, starting with our print magazine and social media platforms (which include Instagram, TikTok and YouTube), to give actionable recommendations of how we can increase diversity and representation in those formats. 

Additionally, we will conduct a survey of contractors who create content for PEOPLE to better understand the diverse makeup of our freelancers, photographers, and other contributors. This survey will aid in our ongoing initiative to make diversity a priority when assigning work, and during our recruiting and hiring processes. 

We will commit to greater representation in our visual assets, working to ensure a broad array of people and perspectives are represented on social media, our homepage, within print and digital articles, and in any additional video programming. With the help of the Anti-Bias Review Board, we will continue to do ongoing audits of the language we use to ensure it is fair, accurate and inclusive.

And we will ask readers to hold us accountable. True progress comes with accountability, and we hope readers will partner with us on our mission to tell these stories well and accurately. Please feel free to send questions, comments or suggestions to [email protected].

PEOPLE Leadership

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Zoë Ruderman, Vice President/GM

Zoë Ruderman is the Vice President/GM of PEOPLE Digital, overseeing PEOPLE's digital content and programming, coordinating with Audience Growth, Video and Sales to increase the brand's digital footprint. Ruderman previously served as Executive Director of Content Strategy for the Entertainment, Style, and Sports brands at Meredith Corp., and held management positions within PEOPLE and at Hearst's Cosmopolitan.

She is also the host of PEOPLE's podcast, Me Becoming Mom, which features celebrities opening up about their extraordinary roads to motherhood. Ruderman is a graduate of the University of Delaware and earned a Master of Journalism degree from the Universitat de Barcelona in Spain. Ruderman lives with her family in Brooklyn, New York.

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Wendy Naugle, Editor-in-Chief

Wendy Naugle joined PEOPLE as Deputy Editor in July 2019 and helps oversee some of our largest franchises, including Sexiest Man Alive, the Beautiful Issue, 100 Reasons to Love America and People of the Year.

Before that, she was executive editor at Glamour, leading editorial content and the brand's Women of the Year Awards and Women of the Year Summit. Her stories on subjects ranging from breast implants to health insurance to reproductive rights won two National Magazine Awards for Personal Service and a National Press Club Consumer Journalism Award, among other honors.

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Kathryn Vandervalk, VP of Content Strategy

Kathryn Vandervalk is the VP of Content Strategy for the Entertainment Group. Her role spans across PEOPLE, PEOPLE En Español and Entertainment Weekly, where she develops digital strategies to increase traffic and revenue across the brands. Vandervalk previously served as Editorial Director for Dotdash Meredith's Beauty Group.

She began her career at an agency, crafting content strategy for tech startups. After moving to Dotdash Meredith in 2017, she worked in SEO and growth across the portfolio of lifestyle brands, before focusing on beauty and weddings. During her tenure with Byrdie & Brides, she helped grow each site's search presence to over six times its pre-acquisition size. Her work combines her passion for logic and data with her love of writing: Vandervalk earned a B.A. and M.A. studying Creative Writing at The University of Chicago, and her M.F.A. in Fiction Writing is from Columbia University.

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Charlotte Triggs, Executive Editorial Director

Charlotte Triggs is Executive Editorial Director for PEOPLE Digital. In this role, she oversees the integrated newsroom, working closely with multiple cross-functional teams to direct PEOPLE's digital editorial coverage. Triggs previously served as senior editor of the brand's television vertical, overseeing countless cover stories and features and running breaking news across print, digital and video, contributing to the phenomenal growth of the brand's audience.

A Producer for PEOPLE's daily podcast, PEOPLE Every Day, Triggs is a frequent guest host and guest contributor. She also frequently appears on programs like Today, Good Morning America, AC360 and more as an entertainment and celebrity expert. A graduate of Rutgers University, she resides in New Jersey with her husband and three daughters.

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Alex Apatoff, Executive Editor

Alex Apatoff is the Executive Editor of PEOPLE Digital. She has been with the brand for more than a decade, holding various roles on the Style and Beauty team before becoming the site's Lifestyle Director to coordinate the work across the commerce, evergreen, features and marketing teams.

Prior to her role at PEOPLE, Apatoff worked at Us Weekly (where, among other things, she oversaw the Fashion Police pages) and graduated from Northwestern University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Journalism.

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Maria Mercedes Lara, Director of Digital Content Operations

Maria Mercedes Lara is the Digital Content Operations Director for PEOPLE, where she oversees content management and editorial workflow for the digital team, with a focus on increasing growth through PEOPLE's newsletters, homepage and notification audiences. She previously held the position of Deputy News Director for PEOPLE.com. Before joining PEOPLE, Maria worked at POPSUGAR, SpinMedia Group and Jezebel. She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Literature from Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts at the New School University in New York City.

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Elizabeth Favre, Director of Audience

Elizabeth Favreis Director of Audience Engagement at PEOPLE. She leads social efforts, audience growth strategy, content distribution and optimization across platforms (with a combined social footprint of 20 million+ followers). Prior to joining the team at PEOPLE, she managed social strategy at Hearst and Billboard.

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Michele Corriston, Platforms Director

Michele Corriston is the Platforms Director of PEOPLE, leading content on emerging digital platforms like TikTok and Snapchat. She started at the brand as a PEOPLE.com intern and then joined the TV team, rising to Senior Editor before running the Platforms Team. Michele has also worked as a digital producer at SiriusXM and graduated from Northwestern University with a Bachelor's degree in Journalism.

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Alicia Dennis, Editorial Director, Crime, Human Interest and Sports

Alicia Dennis has worked throughout PEOPLE's sections for more than 20 years, earning multiple editorial awards for reporting and breaking news coverage. As head of crime, human interest and sports, Dennis oversees a team of investigative reporters who delve into the stories of real people around the country, bringing millions of readers (in addition to viewers on Discovery ID's PEOPLE Magazine Investigates cable TV show, now in its sixth season) compelling accounts of mystery and intrigue, as well as insights from victims and their families as well as stories from everyday heroes who amaze and inspire.

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Sonal Dutt, Editorial Director, Food and Lifestyle

Sonal Dutt oversees food, travel and home coverage for PEOPLE, having launched PEOPLE.com's first lifestyle-focused vertical and Celeb Food recipe app for the brand back in 2013. Prior to her time at PEOPLE, Dutt served as Executive Lifestyle Editor at Every Day with Rachael Ray, Senior Lifestyle Editor at Woman's Day and held editorial positions at InStyle, For Me and Details

A Virginia native, Dutt graduated from James Madison University with degrees in Communications, English and Graphic Design.  She also has a Master's Degree in Magazine Journalism from New York University.

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Andrea Lavinthal, Editorial Director, Style and Beauty

Andrea Lavinthal has added a distinct voice to the style and beauty content across print, digital, social and video since joining PEOPLE in 2012. She created several franchises including the annual PEOPLE x TODAY Show Drugstore Beauty Awards and the Style Issue.  She regularly appears on shows such as Access Hollywood and TODAY, and is co-host of the PEOPLE in the '90s podcast.

Lavinthal got her start in publishing in 2001 when she joined the beauty department at Cosmopolitan. After five years as Beauty Editor, she assumed the role of Content Editor on Sirius XM's Cosmo Radio, where she co-hosted a weekly show. During that time, she launched Cosmo's first daily beauty blog. 

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Samantha Miller, Editorial Director, Entertainment

As Editorial Director for entertainment, Samantha Miller oversees PEOPLE's coverage of the celebrity and entertainment world, from cover and feature interviews with top stars to the latest breaking news to the buzz on movies, TV shows, music and more. She joined PEOPLE in 1995 as one of the very first writers for PEOPLE.com and has previously served as Executive Editor, Senior Editor for movies and technology columnist.

Miller is a graduate of Princeton University and author of E-Mail Etiquette. She lives in Brooklyn.

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Michelle Tauber, Editorial Director, Culture & Society

Michelle Tauber is Editorial Director, Culture & Society overseeing PEOPLE's coverage of Royals, Health, Politics and Parents. She joined PEOPLE in 2000 and previously served as the Senior Editor of Royals. Formerly PEOPLE's first and only Head Writer, she has written a record-breaking 250+ cover stories spanning celebrity, crime, politics, health and human interest. A graduate of the University of Florida, she lives in Orlando.

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Marissa Charles, News Director

Marissa Charles is PEOPLE's News Director, overseeing the off-hours news operation and collaborating with multiple cross-functional teams to direct news coverage online. Based in the Los Angeles, Charles is an award-winning journalist with two decades of experience specializing in entertainment news, human interest and lifestyle stories. Her exclusive features have appeared in a variety of media outlets including The Guardian, Essence, Glamour U.K., Ebony, the Daily Mail, the New York Post, Harper's BAZAARArabia, Cosmopolitan and ELLE.com.

Prior to joining PEOPLE in 2021, Charles spent three years at HollywoodLife serving as Senior Editor and News Director. Born in the U.K., she graduated from Oxford University with a Bachelor of Arts in Modern History.

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Zach Gabrielski, Senior Director, Product

Zach Gabrielski leads the product development team for the Entertainment Group at Dotdash Meredith, which includes PEOPLE.com, EW.com and PeopleEnEspanol.com. Prior to that, Zach worked on other brands at Dotdash Meredith including Byrdie.com, Brides.com, and Tripsavvy.com.

Zach loves being on teams that build great consumer experiences. His teams have created brand new packages for the Byrdie Beauty Awards, the TripSavvy Editors Choice Awards and also built the first Digital Issue package that launched on both Byrdie and Brides. He was also a product manager at Daily Burn, where he led the launch of Daily Burn 365, a live-streaming daily workout program that was nominated for a Daytime Emmy for Best Interactive Media, Original Content. He studied at Temple University, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in American Studies.

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Alex Brez, Director of Operations and Finance

Alex Brez is the Director of Operations for the editorial teams across all platforms at PEOPLE, Entertainment Weekly, and PEOPLE en Español. She has held this position (or something similar) for the past seven years. Prior, Alex was Managing Editor at Marie Claire at Hearst. She began her journalism career as a Photo Director at Gruner + Jahr and at Mansueto Ventures. She also taught at the School of Visual Arts in New York City for many years. Alex is a lifelong New Yorker, having left just long enough to attend and graduate from the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor.

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David Flumenbaum, Vice President, Video & Audio, Entertainment Group

David Flumenbaum is head of video and audio for PEOPLE. Since July 2020, he has run the PEOPLE Digital Studio, a business unit that he launched unifying video and audio, and is responsible for all programming, production, distribution and revenue for PEOPLE video and audio. Under his leadership, PEOPLE video has reached record numbers for both viewership and revenue, and established its first slate of podcasts, including the daily podcast PEOPLE Every Day.

Prior to his role at PEOPLE, he ran video programming strategy, distribution and analytics for both the Meredith and Time Inc. brand portfolios, and before that, spent nine years at the Huffington Post.

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Lauren Mikler, Head of Production, People, PeopleTV

Lauren Mikler oversees video content for PEOPLE digital, covering everything from celebrity interviews to breaking news, live red carpets, and lifestyle and human interest features across platforms including PEOPLE.com, PeopleTV (Dotdash Meredith's OTT streaming network), YouTube and social media. She joined PEOPLE in 2016 after roles at HuffPost, CNN, ABC, WNBC, NY1 and Time Out New York.

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Andrea Dunham, Executive Creative Director

Andrea Dunham joined PEOPLE in 2010 and was named Executive Creative Director four years later. She oversees all design and photography to ensure that the look and feel of PEOPLE is translated in smart, exciting ways across all platforms. As PEOPLE's content has expanded into video, mobile and numerous other brand extensions, Dunham's great taste, sharp editorial insight and deep understanding of the PEOPLE brand and audience is invaluable.

A graduate of Parsons School of Design, she started her career at New York magazine and subsequently worked at Money and Women's Health, among others, moonlighting as the founding creative director of DailyCandy.com. Her work ethic, creativity and talent have made her one of the most respected professionals in her field.

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Ilana Schweber, Photo Director

Ilana Schweber was named Director of Photography for Meredith Corporation's PEOPLE brand across digital and print platforms in August 2018. She joined PEOPLE's photo team in 2010, serving as Managing Director of Photography and overseeing all aspects of shoot production and photo research in addition to managing staff and overseeing budgets.

Prior, Schweber was Deputy Photo Editor at InStyle Specials, producing cover and feature shoots for the Weddings, Home, Makeover and Hair titles, as well as the monthly print edition. Her 20-plus years of experience include roles at REAL SIMPLE, Woman's Day, Consumer Reports and Us Weekly. Her work has been recognized with awards from American Photo, the American Society of Magazine Editors (ASME), and the Society of Publication Designers (SPD).

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Janine Rubenstein, Editor at Large, Host, PEOPLE Every Day

Janine Rubenstein is host of the daily podcast, PEOPLE Every Day, which launched Feb. 1, 2021, bringing the PEOPLE newsroom to life as a daily afternoon escape. Rubenstein also stepped into the new role of Editor-at-Large at PEOPLE, where she continues to write, report and oversee select editorial projects for PEOPLE.

For the past nine years she has reported and edited breaking news, music features (she interviewed Lenny Kravitz, Mariah Carey, Jon Bon Jovi, and John Legend, to name a few), human interest, style, and contributed to PEOPLE's popular franchises Sexiest Man Alive and the Beautiful Issue, as well as co-hosted the PEOPLE & Entertainment Weekly Red Carpet Live streaming events during awards season. Prior to joining PEOPLE, the San Francisco native reported news and entertainment at Essence and served as a reporter/writer at the legendary Cape Times newspaper in South Africa.

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Elizabeth Leonard, West Coast Executive Editor

Lizz Leonard is an award-winning journalist based in Los Angeles who oversees PEOPLE's verticals on the West Coast and manages key industry partnerships and relationships in Hollywood. A veteran who began her career as a reporter at Newsweek, Leonard has helped PEOPLE become an industry leader in access journalism and breaking news, helping to transform PEOPLE's West Coast bureau into a cross-platform creative powerhouse.

Recognized by the Los Angeles Press Club with several Southern California Journalism awards, Leonard is a tireless journalist, compassionate leader and creative thinker. Her world-exclusive cover story featuring Vanessa Bryant for PEOPLE's Women Changing the World franchise won the 2021 FOLIO Eddie & Ozzie Award for Best Full Issue (Lifestyle).

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Jeremy Helligar, Executive Editor, Entertainment

PEOPLE Executive Editor Jeremy Helligar helps oversee the brand's entertainment coverage. He is a PEOPLE veteran who began his professional career as an intern at the magazine straight after graduating college.

Between 2006 and 2019, Helligar was an international drifter, settling short- and longer-term in Buenos Aires, Melbourne, Bangkok, Cape Town, Sydney, London, Belgrade, Kiev, Sarajevo and Prague. He documented his expat escapades in these cities and various others in Eastern Europe in two books (Is It True What They Say About Black Men? and Storms in Africa) and various articles. Helligar has also written about race and queer issues for The Advocate, HuffPost, Medium, Reader's Digest, The Root, Variety, The Wrap, Queerty and various other digital and print platforms.

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Jason Sheeler, Deputy West Coast Editor

Jason Sheeler is PEOPLE's Deputy West Coast Editor, where he writes and edits across all verticals, helms the annual Pride Issue, helps manage the West Coast bureau in Los Angeles and co-hosts the PEOPLE in the '90s podcast. Prior, Sheeler served as Style Director at Departures magazine, managing the fashion department and advertiser relationships.

A graduate of Parsons School of Design in New York, Sheeler has served in senior editorial positions at Entertainment Weekly and Condé Nast's Glamour. His work has also appeared in The New York Times, VOGUE, Condé Nast Traveler, Travel + Leisure, The Hollywood Reporter and Air Mail.

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David Walters, Special Projects Director

As the Special Projects Director of PEOPLE, David Walters plans and produces themed issues and packages throughout the year. He has previously worked as an entertainment editor at titles including Details, Esquire and NYLON. David is a native of Charleston, South Carolina, and graduated from Duke University with a degree in history.

Editorial Staff

​​Joe Accardo * Nicole Acosta * Abigail Adams * Kyler Alvord * Angela Andaloro * Eric Andersson * Elaine Aradillas * Daniela Avila * Tristan Balagtas * Sarah Ball * Laura Barcella * Sheila Baylis * Lanford Beard * Kelli Bender * Farai Bennett * Brenton Blanchet * Phil Boucher * Carly Breit * Lanae Brody * Sam Burros * Ana Calderone * Anna Caplan * Karen "K.C." Carpenter-Baker * Skyler Caruso * Corin Cesaric * Virginia Chamlee * Melody Chiu * Antonia  DeBianchi * Rachel DeSantis * Maggie Dickman * Johnny  Dodd * Christina Dugan Ramirez * Natasha Dye * Vanessa Etienne * Dana Rose Falcone * Jackie Fields * Eileen Finan * Glenn Garner * Topher Gauk-Roger * Wendy Geller * Erica Gerald Mason * Kelsie Gibson * Michael Gioia * Tom Gliatto * Joelle Goldstein * Jason Hahn * Greg Hanlon * Breanne L. Heldman * Steve Helling * Janine Henni * Erin Hill * Kate Hogan * Jack Irvin * Dory Jackson * Monique Jessen * Kristina Johnson * Julie Jordan * Jen Juneau * Michelle Lee * Anya Leon * Lauren Lieberman * Zoey Lyttle * Andrea Mandell * Nathalie Martinez * Nick Maslow * Julie Mazziotta * Thomas McArdle * Tracey McCoy * Mia McNiece * Liz McNeil * Monica Mendoza * Sarah Michaud * Melissa Montoya * Julia Moore * Lauren Morgan * Robbie Moscato-Goodpaster * Ariel Nagi * Aili Nahas * Shafiq Najib * Jeff Nelson * Nate Nickolai * Valerie Nome * Ryan Parker * Aaron Parsley * Maria Pasquini * Charmaine Patterson * Christine Pelisek * Simon Perry * Stephanie Petit * Stephanie Pfeffer * Vanessa Powell * Dave Quinn * Nicholas Rice * Klaritza Rico * Patrick Rogers * Alex Ross * Mackenzie Schmidt * Alexandra Schonfeld * Natalia Senanayake * Stephanie Sengwe * Georgia Slater * Nigel Smith * Sandra Sobieraj Westfall * Kimberlee Speakman * Emily Strohm * Marisa Sullivan * Brittany Talarico * Amanda Taylor * Brianne Tracy * Ben Trivett * Jeff Truesdell * Kate Tuttle * Benjamin VanHoose * Ingrid Vasquez * Nathan Vinson * Kara Warner * Sabrina Weiss * Stephanie Wenger * Chelsea White * Kelly Wynne

About Dotdash Meredith

PEOPLE is part of the Dotdash Meredith family of brands committed to creating accurate, helpful news and information that represents and serves all people. Founded in 1996, Dotdash Meredith is an operating business of IAC. From mobile to magazines, nearly 200 million people trust us to help them make decisions, take action and find inspiration. Dotdash Meredith's over 50 iconic brands include PEOPLE, Better Homes & Gardens, Verywell, FOOD & WINE, The Spruce, Allrecipes, Byrdie, REAL SIMPLE, Investopedia, Southern Living and more.

Learn more about the team behind Dotdash Meredith.

Read about Dotdash Meredith and our family of brands in the news.

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