Nature Publishing Group (NPG) announced today that Mariette DiChristina will formally assume the top editorial post of Scientific American, effective immediately. She becomes the eighth editor in chief of Scientific American and the first woman to hold the position. She had been the acting editor in chief, a title she assumed this past June after the departure of then–editor in chief, John Rennie.

She joined Scientific American in 2001 as its executive editor; previously, she spent 14 years at Popular Science, becoming its executive editor.

In announcing the appointment, NPG Managing Director Steven Inchcoombe said in a statement that DiChristina was "the natural choice to lead Scientific American's editorial team, and I look forward to working together with her to develop Scientific American to increase its impact and its value to its readers across all media."

NPG assumed management of Scientific American earlier this year. In the past, both operated as sister organizations under Macmillan Publishers, Ltd.

As editor in chief, DiChristina oversees the print and online editions of Scientific American and Scientific American Mind as well as all newsstand special editions. She is also the current president of the National Association of Science Writers and has been an adjunct professor at the Science, Health and Environmental Reporting Program of New York University. Recently, she was honored by New York's Italian Heritage and Culture Committee in its October 2009 celebration of Galileo's contributions to science.

Additional details are available in the formal announcement.