Longtime American Express Publishing CEO Takes on New Role as Chief Expansion Officer at Wholesome Wave
Respected publishing-industry veteran Ed Kelly joined Wholesome Wave in April as our first Chief Expansion Officer (CXO), overseeing the communications and development teams, as well as new business development opportunities. Kelly will apply his impressive track record of building, growing and revitalizing brands to the Wholesome Wave network. By drawing on his deep relationships and developing innovative alliances, Kelly will identify and capitalize on opportunities to realize the next level of Wholesome Wave’s growth.
In his more than 25 years at American Express Publishing, Kelly led significant bottom-line growth by diversifying the portfolio through organic investment and global expansion. As CEO and President for nearly 15 years until the company’s sale to Time Inc. in 2013, Kelly oversaw affluent lifestyle brands Travel + Leisure, Departures, Food & Wine, Executive Travel and Black Ink, including their respective print, digital and experiential initiatives.
Kelly’s charitable commitments are as impressive as his executive cred. He serves as a board member of the Kips Bay Boys and Girls Club and co-founded The Kelly Gang, a group of fellow Kelly’s—including former police commissioner Ray Kelly, NY Post “Media Ink” columnist Keith Kelly and Hearst SVP Kate Kelly Smith—who have together raised over $700,000 for charity. Building on this legacy of charitable work, Kelly saw the full-time opportunity at Wholesome Wave as an obvious next step.
“I’m thrilled to be joining Michel and the Wholesome Wave team to accelerate the tremendous work done to date—to make local produce more affordable and accessible nationwide,” said Kelly. “I’m also excited to re-engage with the epicurean world I love and respect so much.” (Wholesome Wave has long been a charitable beneficiary of Food & Wine magazine.)
“Ed perfectly fits the new mold of innovation-and-growth executive,” said Craig Lomma, Wholesome Wave’s Chief Operating Officer. “He’ll bring powerful skills to Wholesome Wave as we embark on creating sustainable revenue streams to expand food access and affordability beyond what would have would have been possible in traditional ways.”
“Ed brings a high-level skill set to the Wholesome Wave family that will propel us into a more sustainable food future, from both a business and social impact perspective,” said CEO Michel Nischan. “His pedigree, as well as his established track record of innovation and collaboration, is a great fit for Wholesome Wave’s operating style. Ed brings the type of serious business chops that will serve us well as we look to significant growth in the field.”