COLLEGE PARK (7/28/20) — Krissah Thompson, a 2002 master’s alum of the University of Maryland Philip Merrill College of Journalism, has been named The Washington Post’s first managing editor for diversity and inclusion.
The Post announced she will join the news organization’s masthead as one of four deputies to executive editor Martin Baron. She is the first African American woman to become a managing editor in The Post’s 143-year history.
Thompson will be in charge of ensuring significant, consistent progress on diversity and inclusiveness in The Post’s coverage of race, ethnicity and identity as well as improved recruitment, retention and career advancement for journalists of color, the announcement said.
“Krissah’s vision is to have The Post become the most diverse and inclusive newsroom in the country – a place that is recognized for fostering talent, where all people feel supported and challenged, and where our journalism fully benefits from the perspectives of staffers who come from a wide variety of backgrounds and life experiences,” Baron wrote in the announcement. “We share her vision along with a determination to make it happen.”
Thompson has been the politics assignment editor in Style for almost three years. She also edited stories about parenting, pop culture, race, fashion, Washington society and media, among other topics.
As a Style writer for five years, Thompson covered First Lady Michelle Obama and the East Wing of the White House, served as acting bureau chief in Ferguson, Missouri, to coordinate coverage of the protests, was the colead reporter on the Emmy-nominated N-word project in 2014 and covered the opening of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture.
As a national staff writer from the fall of 2007 to late 2012, she traveled the country to write enterprise stories about the presidential campaign, interviewing young evangelicals, veterans, African American women and other voters. She was a key writer for The Post’s “Being a Black Man” collaboration in 2006.
Thompson started her career at The Post as an intern and then worked as a financial writer after graduating from the University of Texas-Austin and a year later getting her master’s in journalism at Merrill College.
“This moment,” Thompson wrote in the announcement, “calls for the same kind of all-hands-on-deck commitment to diversity and inclusion that we throw at big stories.”
Read more on Thompson’s promotion at The Washington Post.