Media people

LAT hires investigative editor

Marilyn W. Thompson becomes the national investigative editor, based in Washington, on September 1. She is currently editor and vice president of the Lexington (Ky.) Herald-Leader and had been assistant managing editor for investigations at the Washington Post. She replaces Deb Nelson, who left to take a job at the University of Maryland. Times press release after the jump.

Meanwhile, the Wall Street Journal (via Romenesko) goes with another story about the Chandlers and mentions without amplification the supposed interest of Eli Broad, David Geffen and Ron Burkle in buying the Times.

Los Angeles Times Names Marilyn Thompson as National Investigative Editor

LOS ANGELES, June 28, 2006 - The Los Angeles Times today named Marilyn W. Thompson as national investigative editor, effective September 1. Based in Washington, D.C., she will oversee the bureau's investigative team.

For the past two years, Thompson has been editor and vice president of the Lexington (Ky.) Herald-Leader. During her tenure, the paper fearlessly examined its own failure to cover the civil rights struggles of Southern blacks during the 1950s and '60s.

"Marilyn is one of the most accomplished investigative journalists in the business and will play an important role in the overall work of the bureau," said Editor Dean Baquet. "She brings remarkable depth and breadth of experience - not to mention a string of memorable scoops - to one of the most vital jobs at The Times."

Before joining the Herald-Leader, Thompson spent 14 years at the Washington Post as a reporter, editor and ultimately assistant managing editor for investigations. Under her leadership, the Post's investigative team twice won the Pulitzer Prize for public service. In 2003, she broke the story that segregationist Sen. Strom Thurmond of South Carolina had secretly fathered a daughter by his family's African American maid.

As a reporter at the New York Daily News in the 1980s, Thompson broke the Wedtech corruption scandal, which led to more than 20 federal indictments. Earlier, she was a reporter at the Philadelphia Daily News and at the Record in Columbia, S.C.

She is the author of four nonfiction books, most recently a biography of Thurmond.

A native of North Carolina, Thompson is a graduate of Clemson University. She has served as a visiting professor at Princeton University.

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