The highest ranking editor at NewsNation, a newcomer to cable news that markets itself has delivering “straight-ahead, unbiased news reporting,” has resigned. She is the third top editor to quit in recent months as some staff have complained of a rightward shift at the network.
Jennifer Lyons, NewsNation’s vice president of news, had decided to depart the channel, effective immediately, the company’s staff were told at a meeting on Tuesday.
Sandy Pudar, the news director, left on Feb. 2, and Richard Maginn, the managing editor, resigned on March 1.
Ms. Lyons did not respond to a request for comment. A spokesman for the Texas-based Nexstar Media, which owns NewsNation, said in a statement that it was Ms. Lyons’s decision to leave and that the search for her replacement was underway.
At Tuesday’s staff meeting in Chicago, Perry A. Sook, the chief executive of Nexstar, sought to reassure staff of his commitment to NewsNation after several raised concerns about its editorial direction and the involvement of Bill Shine, a former Fox News co-president who was hired to lead communications for the Trump White House. The concerns among employees were detailed in a New York Times article earlier this week.
“Despite reports to the contrary that you may read, we’re committed to the vision of unbiased reporting,” he said during the meeting, according to a recording of the comments obtained by The New York Times. “But obviously along the way there will be growing pains. In order for us to establish our product and to grow our viewership we’re going to have to try new things to gain some traction.”
Mr. Sook, asked by a staff member about Mr. Shine, said he had not been in the NewsNation building and did not dictate content.
“This guy was in the room where it happened 25 years ago and helped to build the channel to where it is,” Mr. Sook said of Mr. Shine’s experience at Fox News. “Why would we not avail ourselves of his expertise?”
“NewsNation” launched on Sept. 1 as a prime-time national newscast on the cable channel WGN America. It promised an antidote to the more partisan programming of CNN, Fox News and MSNBC. On March 1, WGN America was rebranded as NewsNation and more news shows were introduced.