A familar face around these parts is about to get a lot more familiar.
Today is Rodney Gibbs' first day as the Trib's Chief Innovation Officer, a newly created post that makes him the guy in charge of all the cool stuff we're doing and the even cooler stuff we should be doing and will be doing soon. By design and dictate, he'll have his fingers in each area of our business — editorial, obviously, but also technology, fundraising, membership, corporate underwriting, events, audience engagement, social media, finance, you name it. Wherever there's an emerging platform or device or freshly programmed bit of software that we should be employing to grow our readership, revenue or reach, Rodney will be responsible for ferreting it out and implementing it. Whenever there's an opportunity to burnish the Trib's profile out in the tech sector or on the cutting edge of the news industry, he'll do it as our brand ambassador. He'll have the broadest possible portfolio but a single goal, albeit a massive one: to make us better and, yes, more innovative at everything.
You may be thinking: Wait a minute — isn't he the QRANK guy? He is, or was. For the last three years, Rodney was president of Ricochet Labs, a game developer he cofounded. Ricochet was the birthplace of QRANK, the wildly popular news quiz app that Esquire named one of the "80 people, places, and ideas that matter right now." In partnership with the Trib, Rodney helped create the Texas politics-centered spinoff of QRANK that many of you play on our site; he also developed QRANK one-offs for the BBC, GM and Lollapalooza.
With the closing of Ricochet and the impending sale of QRANK, Rodney was looking for his next professional challenge, and we thought there was no better place for him to do his best work that right here at the Trib. Knowing him as well as we do — and admiring him as much as we do — we feel sure he'll be a great fit.