A couple of days after the announcement broke that Essence, the black woman’s ultimate lifestyle magazine, would be hiring a White Fashion director, criticism for Essence lovers and supporters sparked. Many claimed that hiring a non-black fashion editor goes against what Essence stands for .

Because the criticism has yet to die down, Essence Editor-In-Chief Angela Burt-Murray addresses the issue of the publication’s new White fashion director.

Burt-Murray tells Black Voices in a written statement that she personally hired Ellianna Placas because she respects the brand’s audience.

“I understand that this issue has struck an emotional chord with our audience,” says Burt-Murray. “However, I selected Ellianna, who has been contributing to the magazine on a freelance basis for the last six months, because of her creativity, vision, the positive reader response to her work and her enthusiasm and respect for the audience and our brand. We remain committed to celebrating the unique beauty and style of African-American women in Essence magazine and online at Essence.com.”

 What are your thoughts?