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International Internet Magazine. Baltic States news & analytics Saturday, 20.04.2019, 05:58

Sarmite Elerte steps down as editor in chief of latvian newspaper Diena

BC, Riga, 06.06.2008.Print version

Elerte had been working as editor in chief of the newspaper since 1992. Elerte is believed to be a very influential person in Latvia – very much so because Diena is considered one of the most influential mass media in Latvia.


Elerte and Diena were among the initiators of the so-called "umbrella revolution", achieving that the government failed to fire the Corruption Prevention Bureau's Chief Aleksejs Loskutovs. Then-Prime Minister Aigars Kalvitis (People's Party) eventually had to step down himself.


According to LETA files, Elerte was born in 1957 and started to work as a journalist in 1978, when she was hired by the newspaper Literatura un Maksla (Literature and Art). During the national reawakening period, from 1988 to 1990, Elerte was head of the Popular Front's Information Center, later head of the Supreme Council's Press Center and of then state-owned newspaper Diena.


The newspaper was privatized in 1992 by the Swedish publishing house Expressen and the newspaper's employees. Initially, Elerte, together with the current joint-stock Diena President Arvils Aseradens, the newspaper's commentator Pauls Raudseps and the company's former vice-president Zigurds Drafens, owned 31 % of the company's share capital.


Elerte was appointed the newspaper's editor in chief after the privatization.


Elerte has a degree in journalism from the University of Latvia and a degree in film criticism from the Moscow Cinematography Institute.


Elerte has been member of the Latvian Cinematographers Union since 1989, she worked as chairwoman of the board at Soros Foundation Latvia from 1998 to 2007.


Last year, Elerte participated in the foundation of the European Council on Foreign Relations think tank, where she remains to be Latvia's sole representative. Other founders of the think tank include Estonia's ex-Prime Minister Mart Laar, Finland's ex-President Martti Ahtisaari, former German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer, U.S. billionaire George Soros, and others.


The joint-stock company Diena is the largest media corporation in Latvia that publishes several national and regional newspapers, magazines, and also works in the press publishing and delivery sector. Newspaper Diena is the most popular newspaper issued by the company. The company's controlling interest presently belongs to the Swedish corporation Bonnier AB.

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