POLITICO hires Marilyn Thompson as deputy editor
POLITICO has hired Marilyn Thompson as a deputy editor, POLITICO editor Susan Glasser and executive editor Peter Canellos announced in a staff memo Monday titled "The Politico Class of 2015."
Thompson currently serves as Washington bureau chief for Reuters. Before joining the global news service in early 2010, Thompson worked as a national editor for The Washington Post.
Thompson "is a journalistic legend as both an editor and reporter, and we are lucky to have her help us create POLITICO’s next act as we position the organization for a year of unprecedented growth," Glasser and Canellos wrote.
Glasser said that Thompson will work with enterprise editor Bill Duryea "to establish new investigative reporting capacities."
Thompson's hire comes at a time of big staff turnover at POLITICO, which has faced a wave of departures in recent weeks even as it has announced a raft of high-profile hires. (Capital shares a C.E.O. and several key executives with POLITICO.) Most recently, on Monday morning, The Huffington Post's Michael Calderone reported that POLITICO deputy managing editor Dianna Heitz is leaving for CNN Digital, where several other POLITICO staffers have recently landed.
Here's the full memo:
Happy New Year and welcome back to everyone! Delighted to be beginning 2015 with some huge news for POLITICO: Marilyn Thompson will be joining us as our new deputy editor. Marilyn, currently the Reuters Washington bureau chief overseeing all their coverage of DC, is a journalistic legend as both an editor and reporter, and we are lucky to have her help us create POLITICO’s next act as we position the organization for a year of unprecedented growth. In her new job, she’ll be working closely with us to help oversee our growing newsroom as a charter member of our leadership team, taking on a broad portfolio that involves a close connection to the news each day, as well as a special emphasis on doing what she loves best: which is producing great journalism with an investigative edge. To that end, one of her key initial assignments will be leading and building up our money and politics and lobbying coverage and working closely with Bill Duryea, our new enterprise editor, to establish new investigative reporting capacities as we enter the 2016 presidential campaign and the final two years of the Obama presidency.
If there’s anyone in Washington better positioned to help us find those stories and break them, it’s hard to imagine. As a reporter at various points for the New York Daily News, Washington Post, and New York Times, Marilyn broke stories including the government contracting scandal known as Wedtech and, in 2003, the revelation of Strom Thurmond’s mixed-race daughter. Books she’s authored include Feeding the Beast, a history of the Wedtech scandal; The Killer Strain, which detailed the government’s mishandling of the 2001 anthrax attacks; and two biographies of Thurmond she co-authored. As an editor, she spent much of her career at The Washington Post, where she served as deputy national editor as well as assistant managing editor for investigative. She left the Post in 2003 to serve as editor and vice president of the Lexington Herald-Leader, returning to Washington as deputy bureau chief of the Los Angeles Times. For the last three years, she’s run the Reuters bureau here in Washington as bureau chief, overseeing dozens of journalists on key beats from the White House to Congress to national politics. Most importantly, Marilyn loves to work with reporters on great stories; she’s got a relentless curiosity (when one of us asked recently what kind of investigations she likes the most, Marilyn replied simply: “I like to investigate everything!”) and can smell a true revelation where others cannot.
All of which makes her a perfect fit for the team we are building at POLITICO – and we’re delighted to announce this on the very same day that we are joined by stellar new editing recruits such as Bill Duryea, who comes north to us after an amazing run at the Tampa Bay Times starting their award-winning enterprise team, and Maura Reynolds, our new White House editor who comes to POLITICO after working as an editor at Bloomberg News and longtime reporter for the Los Angeles Times here in Washington covering the White House and other beats and overseas as a foreign correspondent. We’re also promoting the incredible John Bresnahan, who from now on will be not only our lead congressional reporter but also POLITICO’s Capitol Hill bureau chief. Bres is of course already the fearless leader of our best-in-class congressional team and has played an invaluable role directing our coverage, leading our reporting — and guiding and mentoring the great reporters who cover Capitol Hill so ferociously.
This is a major relaunch moment for POLITICO and there will be many more new faces in the coming weeks and months as we continue to expand: we’ll be adding political reporters and editors to cover the presidential campaign; launching new products like The Agenda, our new policy magazine site coming soon from Steve Heuser, the Boston Globe’s award-winning Ideas section editor moving down here to helm the project; continuing to reinvent our website – including a major technology upgrade -- and experiment with the best way to bring readers breaking news; growing POLITICO Pro and POLITICO Magazine and generally finding ways of doing an even better job of showcasing the terrific journalism everyone here is already producing. As we get started on this ambitious 2015 project, it’s important to point out that all these amazing journalists are joining POLITICO because it already sets the gold standard for owning the Washington beat, in so many ways — and well reflected in the fact that December, after the relaunch of our website, turned out to be POLITICO’s most successful December ever, and by a long shot. So a huge thanks to everyone for a great 2014 —and we’ll be meeting with everyone on the staff in various sessions over the coming days to introduce you to our new colleagues and start talking about the cool stories we’re all going to do together in 2015.
Susan & Peter