With this issue, PEOPLE marks its seventh birthday. Our magazine has matured, but after 357 issues it is still evolving.

The past 12 months have been especially innovative, with the introduction of new editorial sections—Body, Coping and, most recently, Going Home—as well as special Bonus Book excerpts. Coming up next week, in fact, is the first of three consecutive installments of Maria Callas: The Woman Behind the Legend, a biography of the great diva by Arianna Stassinopoulos.

There have been other changes too, as on our masthead, where an Executive Editor and two Assistant Managing Editors are now listed. All three have made notable contributions to this magazine, and I'd like you to meet them.

Richard Burgheim, PEOPLE's Executive Editor, began his journalism career at Harvard, where he was sports editor of the Crimson and the campus stringer for the Associated Press. A native of St. Louis, he was also a TIME writer for a dozen years before joining Managing Editor Richard B. Stolley aboard the soon-to-be-launched PEOPLE as a Senior Editor.

Assistant Managing Editor Pat Ryan grew up in Pennsylvania, the daughter of a famous trainer of thoroughbred horses, and graduated from Columbia University's School of General Studies. Before coming to PEOPLE as a Senior Editor three years ago, she spent 18 years at SPORTS ILLUSTRATED, rising from secretary to staff writer to Articles Editor.

Like Dick Burgheim, Assistant Managing Editor for News Hal Wingo is one of PEOPLE's founders. A native of Texas and a Baylor graduate, with a master's in journalism from the University of Missouri, he was a LIFE correspondent in Los Angeles and bureau chief in Hong Kong. As PEOPLE'S News Editor, Hal built our worldwide network of staff and special correspondents.

Speaking of networks, there is another one that is also vital to this magazine. We express our appreciation to the supermarkets, pharmacies, convenience and variety stores, newsstands and transportation terminals that carry PEOPLE—and to the magazine wholesalers whose distribution system makes that possible. We also thank our advertisers for their continued endorsement.

And to you, our readers, we extend a fond thank you for making this birthday very special by rediscovering PEOPLE every week.