California editor at LAT

David Lauter, a veteran of Metro and the foreign desk, gets the job as editor over all news coverage within the state of California. Different title than his predecessor: Janet Clayton was Assistant Managing Editor, while Lauter will be California Editor. She was on the paper's masthead, while it remains to be seen if Lauter will be there. With Clayton gone, all masthead editors at the Times will be white men pushing 50 (or 60 in some cases) except for Melissa McCoy, deputy ME for copy desks, design and production. Last night's memo from ME John Arthur follows.

To: The Staff From: John Arthur, Managing Editor

I'm pleased to announce that David Lauter will become California editor.

David, who has experience in Metro as well as across the country and abroad, is one of the Times’ most accomplished editors. He is well versed in Metro's many issues -- local, state, regional and political coverage and the specialist area. He is known as a thoughtful and well-informed editor with strong relationships all over the paper. He is a terrific choice to replace Janet Clayton, who plans to leave sometime this fall.

David joined the Times’ Washington Bureau in 1987 after working at the National Law Journal as its Washington bureau chief, editor and Supreme Court reporter. At the Times he covered the White House and the 1988 and 1992 presidential campaigns as well as other assignments. In 1989, he was sent to Europe briefly to cover the end of Communist rule in Czechoslovakia and Romania.

David came to Los Angeles as National political editor in 1995 to run coverage of the 1996 presidential campaign. After that, he stayed on as state political editor in 1997, went back to Washington as a national correspondent and then returned to L.A. in 1998, first as specialist editor and then as deputy metro editor. For a few months after the infamous OC plant flood he directed the Orange County staff. Since early 2006 he has been deputy foreign editor.

David has won three significant Times’ Editorial Awards. He was honored in 1991 with an award as part of his role in team coverage for a special section on the Persian Gulf War, "Witness To War." He also won the Times Publisher’s Prize that year for sustained excellence in reporting. And he won an award for sustained excellence in 1992.

David graduated from Yale and lives in Los Angeles with his wife and daughter.

He will report to me and will assume his new duties in early October. Please join me in congratulating David.

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