David Corn To Become Mother Jones’ Washington Bureau Chief

Everybody here at Mother Jones is very pleased to announce that David Corn, long-time Washington Editor for The Nation, best-selling author, blogger, and TV commentator has agreed to take the reins of our greatly expanded Washington bureau.

You can read our old school, fully committeed, awesome press release after the jump. (Quick, somebody “leak” it to Romenesko.) But the gist is: David will head up a team of seven reporters and all this firepower in D.C. represents a fundamental change in the way we do business. Better, stronger, faster than before.

Look out D.C.! Oh, and we’ve also hired Debra Dickerson (author of The End of Blackness) as an on-line columnist and Nick Aster (who built Treehugger and a lot of the Gawker blogs) to head up our web team. Read more after the jump.

Mother Jones Hires David Corn as D.C. Bureau Chief
Appointment completes a major expansion for San Francisco-based news organization

Mother Jones has hired veteran D.C. journalist David Corn to head its recently expanded Washington bureau, which will now have a staff of seven reporters and editors. The longtime Washington editor of The Nation, Corn has also written for the New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Harper’s, The New Republic, Slate, Salon, and many other publications.

“I welcome the chance to work with a team of reporters whose mission is to investigate Washington,” says Corn. “And the timing couldn’t be better. Conventional media outfits are cutting back, opinion frequently drowns out reporting, and the blogosphere is too often loaded with rants. There’s a real appetite for the kind of facts-based journalism Mother Jones is known for. This squad of D.C.-based reporters will turbocharge the magazine’s investigative capabilities and help MotherJones.com become even more of a daily go-to source for vital news and analysis.”

Corn’s hiring comes at a time of rapid expansion by Mother Jones, the San Francisco-based nonprofit news organization. While many other media companies have recently cut Washington staff and closed bureaus, Mother Jones has bucked that trend as part of a transition from a magazine-centered enterprise to a multi-platform news organization.

“We have long admired David’s political insights, his reporting skills, his quick wit, and writerly flair,” said Monika Bauerlein and Clara Jeffery, coeditors of Mother Jones. “Again and again, David has been ahead of the pack on the big stories, and as both a well-connected reporter and an early adapter to new media, he has the perfect combination of experience and talents to lead our D.C. bureau.”

“The appointment of David Corn rounds out a fundamental shift in how Mother Jones operates,” said president and publisher Jay Harris. “With a resourceful group of staff reporters in Washington and San Francisco, we intend for Mother Jones‘ brand of independent reporting to break important stories both online and in print. The news world today is 24/7, and so are we.”

A Fox News Channel contributor, Corn was a regular panelist on the weekly television show Eye on Washington and has appeared on ABC News’ This Week with George Stephanopoulos, PBS’s Newshour, The O’Reilly Factor, Hannity and Colmes, On the Record With Greta Van Susteren, Crossfire, The Capital Gang, Fox News Sunday, Washington Week in Review, The McLaughlin Group, Hardball, C-SPAN’s Washington Journal, and many other shows. In the radio world, he is a regular on NPR’s The Diane Rehm Show and To the Point and has contributed commentary to NPR, BBC Radio, and CBC Radio.

Corn is the coauthor, with Michael Isikoff, of Hubris: The Inside Story of Spin, Scandal, and the Selling of the Iraq War (Crown, 2006), as well as The Lies of George W. Bush: Mastering the Politics of Deception, both best-sellers.

Corn will head a staff of Washington reporters that also includes James Ridgeway, Laura Rozen, Dan Schulman, Stephanie Mencimer, Bruce Falconer, and Jonathan Stein.

Last month, as another part of its reorganization, Mother Jones announced the appointment of Nick Aster, who built Treehugger.com who also built many of the Gawker sites, as media architect and general manager of motherjones.com.

Mother Jones also recently signed up Debra Dickerson, author of The End of Blackness and An American Story, as a blogger and online columnist.

Founded in 1976, Mother Jones magazine has a circulation of 230,000 and has won four National Magazine Awards, including a 2001 award for General Excellence. In 2007 the magazine was a National Magazine Award finalist for General Excellence and Interactive Feature and motherjones.com won two Webby awards for its political coverage.

One More Thing

And it's a big one. Mother Jones is launching a new Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on the corruption that is both the cause and result of the crisis in our democracy.

The more we thought about how Mother Jones can have the most impact right now, the more we realized that so many stories come down to corruption: People with wealth and power putting their interests first—and often getting away with it.

Our goal is to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We're aiming to create a reporting position dedicated to uncovering corruption, build a team, and let them investigate for a year—publishing our stories in a concerted window: a special issue of our magazine, video and podcast series, and a dedicated online portal so they don't get lost in the daily deluge of headlines and breaking news.

We want to go all in, and we've got seed funding to get started—but we're looking to raise $500,000 in donations this spring so we can go even bigger. You can read about why we think this project is what the moment demands and what we hope to accomplish—and if you like how it sounds, please help us go big with a tax-deductible donation today.

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