Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette names Lisa Thompson executive editor

Lisa Thompson Thursday, Aug. 3, 2023, Visit for today's photo gallery. .(NWA Democrat-Gazette/Andy Shupe)
Lisa Thompson Thursday, Aug. 3, 2023, Visit for today's photo gallery. .(NWA Democrat-Gazette/Andy Shupe)

Lisa Thompson has been named the new executive editor of the Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, effective immediately.

She has been filling that position since Rusty Turner’s retirement May 19.

“I’m confident in Lisa’s ability to lead the newsroom and ensure our readers are getting the best possible product,” Eliza Hussman Gaines, WEHCO Media publisher, said in an emailed statement this morning. “Lisa has been in the journalism industry for almost 40 years, a majority of that time spent with our company. In addition to her experience, she has excellent news judgement and a deep knowledge of the communities served by the Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. I’m excited to see what she does in this role.”

Thompson came to the Morning News of Northwest Arkansas — which later became part of the Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette — as Sunday editor in 2002 and was promoted to managing editor in 2004. Her previous experience includes stints at the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette in both Little Rock and Northwest Arkansas, the Idaho Statesman in Boise, the Anchorage Times and the Matanuska Susitna Valley Press in Palmer, Alaska. She holds a bachelor of arts in journalism with a minor in legal studies from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.

As executive editor, Thompson will not only supervise the editors, reporters, photographers and designers at the Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, the River Valley Democrat-Gazette in Fort Smith and NWA Media’s weekly publications, she will “be the champion of the newspaper in the community,” Gaines said.

“I am honored that Eliza and the rest of the management team at WEHCO have entrusted me with the responsibility to continue to make the Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette the source for news and information in our circulation area,” Thompson said. “I’m lucky to work with a great staff of journalists who strive every day to bring our readers the best they can produce to tell the stories of this region — its places and people — as only neighbors can.”

Thompson and her husband, Doug Thompson, live in Fayetteville and have four children and three grandchildren.