Washington D.C., Jul 20, 2016 / 10:30 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Catholic News Service has named Greg Erlandson, former president and publisher of Our Sunday Visitor, as its new director and editor-in-chief. The appointment was announced Wednesday by U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) General Secretary Msgr. J. Brian Bransfield.

"Greg brings a remarkable combination of management expertise, journalism skills and demonstrated service to the Church at the national and international level. I am confident he will prove to be an important resource to the clients of CNS," Msgr.

Bransfield said. Erlandson has been with Indiana-based Our Sunday Visitor (OSV) since 1989, and has spent 16 years as its president and publisher. He began his career at the National Catholic Register, where he served as an editor, before becoming a correspondent for the CNS Rome Bureau in 1986. He also served for a brief time in the Washington, D.C. offices of CNS before leaving to join OSV in 1989.

“I am proud to return to Catholic News Service and I'm grateful for being able to continue to serve the church as a Catholic journalist,” Erlandson told CNA. “Sound Catholic reporting and analysis is needed today more than ever.”

Catholic News Agency’s editor-in-chief Marianne Medlin called the appointment “wonderful news.” “Greg is tremendously respected across the Catholic media world and brings with him a wealth of insight and decades of experience. I am truly thrilled to see what's in store for CNS under his leadership,” she said.   

Erlandson was appointed twice as a consultant to the USCCB Committee on Communications, and served as a consultor for the Holy See's Pontifical Council for Social Communications. He also was a member of the Vatican Media Committee that eventually led to the creation of the Holy See's new Secretariat for Communications. He has also served as president of the Catholic Press Association (CPA) from 2011-2013, and in 2015 received the St. Francis DeSales Award for outstanding contributions to Catholic journalism from the CPA. He was also recently inducted into the Association of Catholic Publishers Hall of Fame for lifetime achievement.

His appointment as director of CNS comes after the former director, Tony Spence, was asked to step down in April following a series of controversial tweets. Spence had served as director of CNS since 2004. Erlandson graduated from Loyola Marymount University with a bachelor's degree and a master's degree in English literature, and attended U.C. Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism. According to the USCCB, Erlandson in his new position will oversee a staff of over 25 journalists and about a dozen correspondents around the world.