Margaret Sullivan Named Next New York Times Public Editor

Margaret Sullivan, editor and vice president of The Buffalo News, will be the fifth New York Times public editor, the New York Times Company announced Monday. It was previously reported that her predecessor, Art Brisbane, will step down in September. Ms. Sullivan will be the first woman to serve as public editor, a post created to make the paper of record more accountable to its readers in the wake of the Jayson Blair plagiarism scandal in 2003. Ms. Sullivan was also the first woman to hold the top job at The Buffalo News, where she started as an intern 32 years ago. According to an internal memo from Times executive editor Jill Abramson, the public editor’s role will be expanded to include a social media presence, blog and web page, in addition to the weekly print column. Full memo below.

Colleagues,

Come September, Art Brisbane’s term as public editor will come to an end.  I am grateful to him for his unwavering integrity and commitment to our readers.

The public editor is someone uniquely positioned to hold us to our own standards and to serve as our readers’ advocate. The role will change to keep pace with our multi-platform presence. The new Public Editor will engage with our readers in a more timely way by creating a presence in social media, a blog and Web page as well as a print column.

A comprehensive search for our fifth public editor has led us to Margaret Sullivan, editor and vice president of The Buffalo News. Margaret has deep experience as a reporter and editor. She created the first investigative team at The Buffalo News. She’s a regular blogger and is comfortable with social media. Margaret impressed us all with her fair-mindedness, openness and understanding of our values.

She’ll be around in late summer and debut on multiple platforms sometime in September. Please join me in giving Margaret a warm welcome.

– Jill