NEW YORK (AFP) – The New York Times announced on Thursday that Bill Keller was stepping down as executive editor and would be replaced by Jill Abramson, the first woman to hold the top editorial post at the newspaper.
Abramson, a native New Yorker, joined the Times in 1997 from The Wall Street Journal and has been managing editor since 2003. She became the newspaper’s Washington editor in 1999 and Washington bureau chief in 2000.
Current Washington bureau chief Dean Baquet, a former editor of The Los Angeles Times, was named to replace Abramson as managing editor.
The Times said Keller, who took over as executive editor in 2003, will become a full-time writer for the newspaper.
“Without question, Jill is the best person to succeed Bill in the role of executive editor,” publisher Arthur Sulzberger said.
“An accomplished reporter and editor, Jill is the perfect choice to lead the next phase of The Times’s evolution into a multiplatform news organization deeply committed to journalistic excellence,” Sulzberger said.
Abramson told the newspaper that being appointed executive editor was like “ascending to Valhalla” and becoming the first woman named to the post in the 160-year history of the newspaper was “meaningful to me.”
The Times said the appointments would be effective September 6.