David G. Bradley, chairman of Atlantic Media, will retain a minority stake and intends to continue running the magazine for the next three to five years.
Ms. Kakutani has reviewed books at The New York Times since 1983 and was awarded a Pulitzer Prize in 1998. The paper named Parul Sehgal one of its book critics.
The writer, Joseph Rago, 34, won a Pulitzer Prize in 2011 for his editorials challenging President Barack Obama’s health care law. Foul play is not suspected.
The Sun-Times was acquired by an investment group that includes organized labor, preventing it from being bought by the owner of The Chicago Tribune.
Ms. Canedy, a former senior editor at The Times who shared a Pulitzer Prize in 2001, will be the first woman and the first African-American to steer the awards process.
The magazine has agreed to settle a lawsuit with the fraternity at the center of a discredited article in which a woman claimed she had been gang raped.
Journalists at KOMO broadcast station in Seattle, which was acquired by Sinclair Broadcast Group in 2013, have chafed at programming directives.