Eric Cotton, who has held a variety of reporting and editing posts at the Record-Journal over the last 25 years, has been named the media organization’s next executive editor.
Cotton, who served as the paper’s managing editor for the last decade, was named executive editor this month and now will lead the newsroom’s high-quality investigative and accountability journalism in print and online at www.myrecordjournal.com.
“I’m thrilled to get the opportunity to lead such a talented and special group of dedicated journalists,” Cotton said. “I am a passionate believer in the power of factual, independent journalism that can strengthen our communities and I’m thankful the White family is putting this trust in me.”
Liz White, publisher and executive vice president of the Record-Journal Media Group, said she’s excited to work with Cotton, who will be charged with growing and serving current and new audiences, while also accelerating the Record-Journal’s digital growth.
'We greatly appreciate all that Eric has meant for our company the last 25 years,” she said. “I am confident that he is the right person to lead the Record-Journal Media Group newsroom. I can't wait to see where he takes us.”
The top editor position at the Record-Journal was held by Ralph Tomaselli for the last 17 years. Unfortunately, last fall, Tomaselli suffered a stroke that will keep him from returning to the position. Today, he contributes to the Record-Journal by advising senior leadership as Editor Emeritus.
“I have worked closely with Eric for the last 25 years and I am pleased that he emerged as the best candidate,” Tomaselli said. “I love the Record-Journal and am glad that the senior editing position will be in such competent hands.”A career in local journalism
Cotton’s resume at the Record-Journal is filled with work that has shined a light on the public’s right to know, as well as leading the paper to prestigious journalism awards.
He got his start at the Record-Journal in 1997 as a reporter and covered beats including Meriden City Hall and Meriden education before his promotion to an editing role.
Early in his career as an editor, Cotton led a project investigating the role of bullying in the suicide of a 12-year-old Meriden boy, which resulted in statewide legislative reform and earned the Theodore Driscoll Investigative Award from the Society of Professional Journalists.
He has fought to preserve public records, including initiating a Freedom of Information case against increased government secrecy that reached the state Supreme Court in 2021.
And he was a key leader in helping the company earn the prestigious honor of Newspaper of the Year from the New England Newspaper & Press Association for the last two years in a row. He also helped establish and support the launch of the Record-Journal’s Latino Communities Reporting Lab.
“Eric has lived in both Meriden and Wallingford for several years, and now in Southington, so he knows our communities well, which contributes to the strength of our products and stories,” White said.
Cotton grew up in Southington, where he currently resides with his wife Katie and their two children Julia, 6, and Madeline, 2.
You can reach Cotton via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.