|[February 10, 2014]
Bill Keller, Former New York Times Executive Editor, to Join the Marshall Project as Editor-in-Chief
NEW YORK --(Business Wire)--
Bill Keller, New York Times opinion columnist and its executive editor
from 2003 to 2011, announced he is leaving the paper to join the
Marshall Project as its first editor-in-chief. The Marshall Project is a
not-for-profit, non-partisan journalism organization dedicated to
covering the US criminal justice system.
"The Marshall Project is an irresistible opportunity to take some of
what I've learned from The Times's past decade of reinvention, to learn
some new things, and to build a modern journalistic enterprise from
scratch," Mr. Keller said. "The New York Times has given me some of the
best jobs in journalism, and many of the best colleagues. I'm deeply
grateful for the adventures and the lessons and the camaraderie of the
world's finest news organization, and I'm proud to think I played some
part in securing its future."
New York Times Publisher, Arthur Sulzberger, Jr., said, "While I am
sorry to lose Bill's thoughtful and experienced voice from our Op-Ed
page, I am excited for him. He is a great choice to build what sounds to
be an exciting new journalistic organization. Bill has been a highly
valued and trusted colleague in so many ways over several decades and I
will miss him. He leaves with my sincere gratitude and best wishes."
The Marshall Project was founded by former hedge fund manager Neil
Barsky, who will serve as publisher. Mr. Barsky is also a former Wall
Street Journal reporter, and directed the 2013 documentary film KOCH.
"Our goal is to create a first-class news organization that will spark a
national conversation about the troubled US criminal justice system,"
Mr. Barsky said. "Bill Keller's career as a reporter, editor and
columnist exemplifies the principles of intellectual independence,
fairness and creativity that will help the Marshall Project have an
immediate impact. We are thrilled to have the benefit of his leadership."
Bill Keller served as executive editor of The New York Times from 2003
to 2011. Keller's journalism career has included stints at the
Oregonian, Congressional Quarterly and the Dallas Times Hrald. For the
Times, he served as Moscow and Johannesburg bureau chief, foreign editor
and managing editor, before being named executive editor of the paper in
2003. Mr. Keller won the Pulitzer Prize for his reporting on the
dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1988.
The Marshall Project will have an annual operating budget of $4-$5
million, and a full-time staff of 20-25 journalists. Funding for the
Marshall Project will come from foundations and individuals.
In recent years, non-profit digital news organizations have emerged as
innovative leaders in the field of journalism, and routinely produce
some of the nation's highest caliber enterprise and investigative
reporting. Two online non-profit organizations, Pro Publica and Inside
Climate News, have been awarded Pulitzer Prizes.
"We believe that with the tools now available for gathering, testing,
presenting and distributing information, we can create a national hub
where aggressive reporting, rigorous analysis and stimulating
conversation converge," Mr. Keller said. "One in 31 American adults
lives under the supervision of the criminal justice system - in prison
or jail, or on parole or probation. Millions more are tied to that
system as enforcers or victims, advocates or academics, policymakers or
journalists. This is a subject that defines us. If we are successful, we
can hold the system more accountable for delivering on its promise of
humane and effective justice."
Mr. Keller begins his new role March 1st. The Marshall
Project will begin publishing sometime in the second quarter of 2014.
In addition to serving as publisher of the Marshall Project, Mr. Barsky
will continue to serve as the chairman of the board of overseers at the
Columbia Journalism Review.
ABOUT THE MARSHALL PROJECT
The Marshall Project is founded on two simple ideas:
1) There is a pressing national need for excellent journalism about
the U.S. court and prison systems.�The U.S. has the highest rate of
incarceration in the world. From spiraling costs, to controversial drug
laws, to prison violence, to concerns about systemic racial bias, there
is a growing bipartisan consensus that America's criminal justice system
is in dire need of reform. As traditional media companies cut back on
enterprise reporting, the Marshall Project will serve as a dynamic
digital hub for information and debate on the legal and corrections
2) With growing awareness of the system's failings, now is an
opportune moment to launch a national conversation about criminal
justice.�There are numerous indications of the country's appetite
for reform. U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder recently proposed sweeping
changes to mandatory sentencing guidelines for drug offenses. In New
York State, the Rockefeller drug laws were amended to give judges more
discretion over sentencing. Marijuana is now decriminalized or legal in
15 states. And for the first time in decades, the national prison
population is beginning to decline.
The Marshall Project will combine the best of the old and the new in
journalism. We will achieve our goals through the use of conventional
investigative reporting and opinion writing, and embrace new
technologies currently transforming the media, including interactive
graphics, immersive digital stories, short video documentaries and
content generated by our readers. We will curate the daily torrent of
criminal justice news from publications around the country, highlight
the work of advocacy groups on both the right and left, host debates,
and drive a lively discussion on social media.
The Marshall Project
Twitter (News - Alert):
250 W. 57th�Street, Suite 2514
York, NY 10107
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