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Associated Press names Julie Pace as top editor

Julie Pace, an Associated Press veteran, has pledged to modernize the global agency's reporting on digital platforms in her new role as executive editor. (Jacquelyn Martin/AP)
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The Associated Press on Wednesday named Julie Pace, the global news service’s Washington bureau chief and a longtime Washington journalist, as its executive editor.

She succeeds Sally Buzbee, who departed the AP in May to become The Washington Post’s executive editor.

Pace, 39, has been the AP’s Washington bureau chief since 2017, overseeing political, national security and policy coverage during the tumultuous Trump administration and presidential election aftermath. Now she will oversee AP’s massive global operation, which includes journalists spread across 100 countries, with a promise to modernize the AP’s reporting on digital platforms.

“I am honored to be leading AP’s team of talented and courageous journalists, who work tirelessly to break news and tell impactful stories from every corner of the world,” Pace said in a statement. “We have great opportunities ahead to modernize our news report and better serve the needs of our customers and audience, while always maintaining AP’s standing as the world’s preeminent fact-based news organization.”

Pace’s elevation is the latest in this year’s wave of new top editors tapped to lead newsrooms. Kevin Merida, a former Post managing editor and more recently editor in chief of ESPN’s the Undefeated, became the Los Angeles Times’s new executive editor. ABC News hired Kim Godwin, a former CBS News executive, as president of its television news division. Emilio Garcia-Ruiz, who served as a managing editor at The Post, left last year to become the San Francisco Chronicle’s editor in chief.

Some of those moves have been historic in nature; Godwin is the first Black woman to run a broadcast TV news division, and Buzbee — who replaced retiring Post editor Martin Baron — is the first woman to occupy the top newsroom job. Rashida Jones, who became president of MSNBC in February, is the first Black woman to run a major cable news network.

A woman has held the executive editor job at the AP since 2002. Daisy Veerasingham, AP’s executive vice president and chief operating officer, will become the first woman, person of color and non-U.S. citizen to lead the company as president and chief executive when she ascends to the role in January.

Before running coverage out of the Washington bureau, Pace served as the AP’s chief White House correspondent. She joined AP in 2007 as a video producer and has been a common figure on network and cable news as an on-air analyst.

Veerasingham cited not just Pace’s journalistic prowess but her ability to serve as a public face for the AP as crucial elements for the job.

“Julie’s experience working in Washington, video background and strong connections with our global staff are a winning combination that will drive AP into the future,” she said in a statement.

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Sally Buzbee of the Associated Press named executive editor of The Washington Post, the first woman to lead the newsroom