SDM today announced that Laura E. Stepanek, the magazine’s Editor and Associate Publisher, has decided to retire effective April 1, 2020.

Stepanek has served as Editor since 2001 at BNP Media, the magazine’s publishing house. During this time she carefully nurtured some of SDM’s long-standing, reader-favorite columns, such as 5-Minute Tech Quiz and Security & the Law, while introducing new features and departments such as the State of the Market series, Technology @ Work, Systems Integrator of the Year, Technology Solutions & Skills, and Monitoring Today, SDM’s biannual supplement. She also managed the magazine’s SDM 100 and Top Systems Integrators Reports.

Prior to that, Stepanek contributed to SDM in various editorial roles while it was part of Cahners Publishing. She first joined the magazine in 1984.

“My time at SDM has been rewarding and memorable. Being involved in the always-dynamic security industry — and the many friends I’ve made there — made it never seem like work,” Stepanek said. She plans to spend more time at her favorite activities of gardening, reading and photography, and spend time with family and friends.

“I have had the pleasure of working with Laura Stepanek for more than three years,” said Gary Merrill, Group Publisher of SDM and Security. “She is a fantastic writer and a wonderful leader of our SDM editorial team. Laura brings such energy and enthusiasm to the job each and every day. It is always a treat to be able to see her at trade shows and company meetings as I often learn new, valuable things about our industry each time we are together. I wish Laura well in her retirement.”

Karyn Hodgson, SDM’s Managing Editor, will assume the role of Editor in Chief on April 1, 2020.

Merrill said, “It is with great pleasure that I announce the promotion of Karyn Hodgson to Editor in Chief, SDM Magazine. Karyn is a valuable member of the SDM family and a strong editorial force in the industry. I am very excited to have the opportunity to work closely with Karyn as we head into this new chapter. SDM is in a fantastic place with Karyn leading the editorial direction of our publication.”

Hodgson holds a Masters of Science in Journalism from Northwestern University and first joined SDM as Managing Editor in 2000, after serving as managing editor and a variety of editorial roles on SDM’s sister publication, Security Magazine, beginning in 1993. She left full-time work to freelance in 2002 but continued writing for SDM on a monthly basis. Hodgson returned to SDM in 2015. Since rejoining the staff she has been responsible for managing the Dealer and Systems Integrator of the Year awards, the biannual Monitoring Today Supplements, and frequently wrote in-depth features stories for the publication.

“I’m honored to take the helm of SDM and am committed to maintaining the high standards of coverage of the security industry SDM is known for. Laura has been a terrific editor and mentor to me for many years and I wish her all the best in her well-deserved retirement,” Hodgson said.


About SDM

SDM is the No. 1 security channel media with 100 percent BPA Audited buy/install circulation. SDM provides management and technical professionals with a comprehensive overview of the security marketplace. Through its monthly print magazine, Buyers Guide and Monitoring TODAY supplement — as well as e-newsletters, the website, and live events, SDM is consistently ranked best read and most credible magazine by ISC West attendees. SDM Magazine was first published in 1971. To learn more, visit the SDM History page.