It must have been a stressful moment for the news department, finding out that the chief executive officer of the flagship company had suddenly resigned without a courtesy heads-up. The Advocate had to rely on outside sources to tell an inside story – which it did on April 18 under the headline: “Pride Media CEO Nathan Coyle Resigns After Rocky Tenure.”
Coyle jumped ship to go to the Ford Modeling Agency, according to The Hollywood Reporter – which found out “prior to (Coyle) informing his staff at Pride Media,” The Advocate reported.
The Advocate did its due diligence: “Pride Media’s spokesperson confirmed with The Advocate that Coyle is no longer with the company and will be replaced by chief revenue officer Orlando Reece in the interim.”
Another outside outlet, Women’s Wear Daily, also reported on the surprise move. “Coyle’s exit is said to have been unexpected by Pride owner Adam Levin, the founder of Oreva Capital and also the owner of High Times magazine, although rumors had been going around that the CEO was actively looking for another job,” WWD reported.
Yet another outlet, the New York Post, had a quote from Levin: “We are confident Orlando will provide the necessary leadership required to serve the dynamic Pride Media team’s needs in order to move our business forward in a positive way.”
At the helm of Pride Media, which owns The Advocate, Out, and several other LGBT publishing and media titles, Coyle was besieged by freelance writers, photographers and others furious at not having been paid for work they contributed to Out magazine under a content provider and payment scheme created under the previous regime. The back-and-forth over who is responsible for those outstanding payments “quickly turned into a $10 million lawsuit, which is said to already be in early stage settlement talks,” WWD reported.
Coyle, who was hired in June 2018, had promised freelancers that they would be paid, and apparently about half were, according to WWD. But some said they are still waiting.
WWD reported that talks with the National Writers Union “hit a snag a few weeks ago. But already, the new leadership at Pride is said to have gotten in touch with NWU about moving forward.”
The Los Angeles Blade was unable to connect with Levin for comment.