CultureMap News

Mapping a new direction: CultureMap taps longtime Austin editor to lead editorial department

Mapping a new direction: CultureMap revamps editorial department

Arden Ward headshot black and white
Arden Ward, CultureMap editorial director.  Photo by Jessica Pages
Steven Devadanam headshot
Steven Devadanam, Houston editor.  Photo by Emily Jaschke
Arden Ward headshot black and white
Steven Devadanam headshot

CultureMap has revamped its editorial department, announcing Arden Ward as statewide editorial director. The company also announced Steven Devadanam will join the team as Houston editor.

“I am delighted to announce the promotion of Arden Ward to run editorial for CultureMap statewide,” said David Gow, CEO of Gow Media. “Arden has leadership qualities, strong editorial skills, and a deep understanding of the content that resonates with our audiences.”

Ward joined CultureMap in 2011, during its expansion to Austin. She served as executive editor in Austin before becoming network managing editor, where she played an integral role in the brand’s expansion to the Fort Worth and San Antonio markets.

Devadanam brings a diverse set of experiences to his new role as editor of Houston. His background includes strategic roles at Village Voice Media, Modern Luxury, NFL Network, and CNN Digital. “We are excited to welcome Steven to the CultureMap team,” Ward said. “He is a champion of the brand and brings great enthusiasm for the city and its culture — which we look forward to sharing with our readers on a daily basis.”

Devadanam replaces Clifford Pugh, who served as editor-in-chief of CultureMap Houston since the company’s inception in 2009. “Clifford has been instrumental in the development of CultureMap,” said Gow. “We are very grateful for his leadership and the mark he has made over the past eight years.”

Devadanam is just the latest in a series of strong additions to the CultureMap editorial team. In May, the company announced the hiring of Ken Hoffman, the longstanding popular columnist from the Houston Chronicle. And more recently, under Ward’s leadership, CultureMap hired Katie Friel as editor in Austin and San Antonio, Brandon Watson as food editor in Austin and San Antonio, and Stephanie Allmon Merry as managing editor in Dallas-Fort Worth.

“We have been investing in the editorial team across the state,” said Gow. “With these additions, we are poised to extend our leadership position.”