The promotion follows the appointment of the current editor and publisher, Jonathan Lee, to the newly-created role of managing director.
Both will take up their new roles on Monday, 7 July.
He said: “I have hugely enjoyed the last four years at the Evening Mail and now look forward to working with our talented team as we enter an exciting phase in the development of our traditional and emerging platforms.
“It is an honour and privilege to be entrusted with the editorship of a newspaper which truly is at the heart of the communities it serves.
“I will now make it my work to ensure those links are further strengthened through fair, honest and campaigning journalism.”
“It has been a privilege to be editor of the Evening Mail and I thank everyone for the tremendous support I have received over the last six years.
“I wish James every success in what is a great job in a great part of the country.
“I am now looking forward to taking on a new challenge to grow the business in the digital age.”
Robin Burgess, chief executive of parent company the CN Group said: “We are at an important time in the regional media industry and I am confident that we have a team well placed to meet the challenges we will face, and maximise opportunities that will arise in a truly multi-media, multi-platform age.
“It is important that we continue to grow and nurture talent to lead us through the transformation in a fast-changing industry.
“We are committed to being at the heart of the communities we serve and providing those communities with quality, relevant journalism they can trust, on whatever platform or device they want to access it.
“I have every confidence that Jonathan and James, and the rest of the team in Barrow, and across CN Group, are well placed to achieve that.”