Danielle Belton, who has led The Root for the past five years, will take over the top position at HuffPost next month, filling a role that has been sitting vacant for more than a year.
The appointment of Ms. Belton was announced on Wednesday by Buzzfeed chief executive Joanna Pertti, who acquired HuffPost in February.
“I realized that journalism was right for me when I was in J-school in college, and I realized that these are my people. I realized the same thing while talking to HuffPost employees,” an interview by Ms. Belton Said in. “These are the people who are passionate about getting the information they need to make people make the best choices possible about their daily lives. These are the people who like to inform the world. . “
Buzzfeed began its search for a new top HuffPost editor after Mr. Peretti announced the acquisition in November, according to an internal email to employees on Wednesday. In the email, which was obtained by The New York Times, Mr. Peretti said Buzzfeed had prioritized finding a leader with a long-term vision for HuffPost who could “champion his immediate, compelling and far-reaching journalism.” “
43-year-old Ms. Belton, head of The Route, a black news and culture site owned by G / O Media, was offered the job last week.
HuffPost, originally known as The Huffington Post after its founder Ariana Huffington, has struggled financially in the competitive digital news space in recent years. Former Times editor, Lydia Polgreen, who had been heading the website since 2016, left for Gimlet Media last March. HuffPost has since been led by executive editor Hilary Fray.
Buzzfeed Announced in november It was receiving HuffPost from Verizon Media. On March 9, soon after the deal was completed, Buzzfeed closed 47 HuffPost employees And discontinued the Canadian version of the publication. Mr Peretti said at the time that cost reductions were needed because HuffPost lost more than $ 20 million in 2020 and estimated that it would lose the same amount this year.
The company was criticized for entering the video meeting in a manner in which it announced layoffs that required employees to use passwords.
Ms. Belton now works to unite a publishing newsroom under Bezalfed and adopt a new curriculum for publication. He will report to Buzzfeed editor-in-chief Mark Schuffs, although the two publications will have separate editorial teams and websites.
“I’m really excited about this healthy competition that exists between HuffPost and Buzzfeed,” Ms Belton said. “I’m excited that HuffPost kills Buzzfeed on the scoop.”
Ms Belton, who describes herself as “a hard-core idiot about the media”, said her priority was to create more diverse newsrooms. She said that the leadership had told her that it was committed to diversity and that she would be able to hire more workers.
“I feel very strongly that all newsrooms should be diverse, all newsrooms should reflect the different communities that make up this country,” she said.
Ms Belton said there was “no good way to settle people” and she wanted to contact her new team in a medical practice.
“I think journalists and journalists who work every day to make HuffPost a wonderful publication are very passionate about it,” she said. “So I really want to focus on them and make them feel good again about their situation, about their workplace, and they continue to feel the pride they have always felt. “
Ms. Belton was the editor in chief of The Root. He has written and edited for publications including Grogio, Essence, The Washington Post and The Times. He also created the award-winning blog The Black Snob.
Ms. Belton will begin her new role on April 12 The daily beast.