American Ag welcomes its first new editor in 20 years. Here’s a look at Chris Torres and what he’ll bring to you.
Holly Spangler | Jul 16, 2018
Award-winning journalist. Northeast agriculturist. Pennsylvania native. Those are just a few of the qualities Chris Torres brings to his new position as editor of American Agriculturist.
Torres comes to American Aggie from Lancaster Farming, where he started in 2006 as a staff writer and later became regional editor. He’s a seven-time winner of the Keystone Press Awards, handed out by the Pennsylvania Press Association, and he is a Pennsylvania State University graduate.
What’s he most excited about as he takes over the helm as editor? “Meeting a bunch of new people,” Torres says — and, going back to his writing roots. “Daily journalism excites me.” Prior to his time at Lancaster Farming, Torres worked at a daily paper on the East Coast.
“The news business is a challenging job,” he says. “It makes you think outside your small box, and you have to formulate what the reader wants to see from the overall product. It’s rewarding to see a nice product in the end.”
Continuing farmer focus
Torres believes in “evolution before revolution,” meaning you won’t see big, dramatic differences in the magazine and website. But you may well see incremental changes.
“Farmers want to hear other farmers talk, and we’ll create that through columns and stories,” he says. “I want American Agriculturist to be the go-to product, continuing the legacy and high standard John Vogel has set.”
Torres succeeds Vogel, who is retiring after 47 years with Farm Progress and its related publications. Vogel started with Dakota Farmer in 1971 and moved to Prairie Farmer in 1972. He became editor of Pennsylvania Farmer in 1985, and was named editor of American Agriculturist in 1998 when it expanded to cover the entire northeast region.
“It’s time to turn figuratively the page,” Vogel says, “to let an experienced ag communicator meet future business and technical need-to-know content of incoming agriculturists. Chris brings new energy to this vital mission.”
Torres’ family is based in Lebanon County, Pa. His wife grew up on a small farm in Berks County, Pa., where they raised corn, soybeans, feeder cattle and more. Torres and his wife are parents to three young boys.
Spangler is executive editor of American Agriculturist.