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Visionary Angel Passes Leadership Torch to Web Pioneer Newcorn

In 1995, Dave Newcorn and Joe Angel were told not to mess with that "web s**t during business hours." But they did so anyway, creating PMG's digital footprint from scratch, and evolving it into the force it is today. Today, their roles are evolving, too.

Packaging World's first website, circa 1995.
Packaging World's first website, circa 1995.

After a nearly three-decade run with the company he founded—Packaging World’s parent Summit Media Group, now PMMI Media Group (PMG)—longtime President and PW Publisher Joe Angel is transitioning into an entirely new role. Earlier this month, Angel stepped down as president of PMMI Media Group and became Executive Vice President of Industry Outreach. The new role is not with PMMI Media Group, rather PMMI, and consists of being an ambassador to three key PMMI constituencies. Joe Angel, now Executive Vice President of Industry Outreach, PMMIJoe Angel, now Executive Vice President of Industry Outreach, PMMI

The foremost is the education community, where Angel will represent PMMI as well as the packaging field more broadly, encouraging and facilitating young people joining the field. Second, Angel will also visit PMMI members and help drive member engagement with PMMI. Finally, and crucial to PW readers, Angel will maintain relations on behalf of PMMI with key industry partners. Among key partners are you, the brands and CPGs that rely on packaging technology. Angel will be looking to work specifically with CPGs to help educate them about PMMI’s value and about all it offers, far beyond the big Chicago and Vegas PACK EXPO shows. 

If you know Joe Angel—and so many of you do—he’s the quintessential connector and a conversation facilitator, so this role is tailor-made for him. The rolodex he started with in the ’80s may now look more like an iPhone database. But if you’re even obliquely adjacent to packaging, chances are you’re in Angel’s Contacts. Don’t be surprised if he reaches out to you in his new role, or better yet, look to connect with him.

Meanwhile, Dave Newcorn, whom Angel lured to Summit in 1995, took the reins as President of PMG on Oct. 1. As a promising, tech-savvy Packaging World editor in the late ’90s, Newcorn was warned by founding Chief Editor Arnie Orloski “not to work on that web s**t during business hours.” Deftly sidestepping that admonition, Newcorn built the company’s first website, pictured above, and since has single-handedly spearheaded Summit/PMG’s transition to modern digital publishing. He continues to guide its evolution today.

With Angel at the helm steering, and Newcorn as the engine propelling the ship forward, Summit Media Group’s web presence and offering became attractive to PMMI, which purchased the publishing company around this time eight years ago, in October 2014. The two companies have walked the same path ever since. Dave Newcorn, now President, PMMI Media GroupDave Newcorn, now President, PMMI Media Group

“Joe’s focus and style over the last 30 years brought us to where we are today. For the next 30 years, my focus is singularly on how to strategically transform and re-tool the company for the future,” Newcorn says. “One thing Joe and I have in common is the continuing drive and passion for publishing in the field of packaging and processing, with a focus on delighting readers and advertisers alike.”

The pace of change that Angel presided over was fast, as publishers contended with a once-in-several-generations technological revolution in the Internet. And it’s only getting faster. Having been the change agent himself, Newcorn is well-situated to steer this company—and me, the latest in a line of Packaging World editors—into the next phase of B2B publishing.

“The best part of this transition is that Joe isn’t going anywhere,” Newcorn says. “I have the freedom and flexibility to reach out to Joe any time I want for advice and guidance, which I already have done, and expect to continue to do.” PW

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