Columbus Dispatch names first woman as executive editor

June 9, 2022 GMT
Edwina Blackwell Clark poses in the Columbus Dispatch newsroom on Wednesday, June 8, 2022, in Columbus, Ohio. The Columbus Dispatch, on Wednesday, named Blackwell Clark as executive editor, making her the first woman and first person of color to lead the nearly 151-year-old Ohio newspaper's newsroom. (Doral Chenoweth/The Columbus Dispatch via AP)
Edwina Blackwell Clark poses in the Columbus Dispatch newsroom on Wednesday, June 8, 2022, in Columbus, Ohio. The Columbus Dispatch, on Wednesday, named Blackwell Clark as executive editor, making her the first woman and first person of color to lead the nearly 151-year-old Ohio newspaper's newsroom. (Doral Chenoweth/The Columbus Dispatch via AP)
Edwina Blackwell Clark poses in the Columbus Dispatch newsroom on Wednesday, June 8, 2022, in Columbus, Ohio. The Columbus Dispatch, on Wednesday, named Blackwell Clark as executive editor, making her the first woman and first person of color to lead the nearly 151-year-old Ohio newspaper's newsroom. (Doral Chenoweth/The Columbus Dispatch via AP)
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Edwina Blackwell Clark poses in the Columbus Dispatch newsroom on Wednesday, June 8, 2022, in Columbus, Ohio. The Columbus Dispatch, on Wednesday, named Blackwell Clark as executive editor, making her the first woman and first person of color to lead the nearly 151-year-old Ohio newspaper's newsroom. (Doral Chenoweth/The Columbus Dispatch via AP)
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Edwina Blackwell Clark poses in the Columbus Dispatch newsroom on Wednesday, June 8, 2022, in Columbus, Ohio. The Columbus Dispatch, on Wednesday, named Blackwell Clark as executive editor, making her the first woman and first person of color to lead the nearly 151-year-old Ohio newspaper's newsroom. (Doral Chenoweth/The Columbus Dispatch via AP)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — The Columbus Dispatch has named Edwina Blackwell Clark as executive editor, making her the first woman and first person of color to lead the nearly 151-year-old Ohio newspaper’s newsroom.

Executives on Wednesday announced Blackwell Clark, 59, will become executive editor on June 27, replacing Alan Miller, who retired at the end of 2021.

“I’m really excited about the next chapter for The Columbus Dispatch,” Blackwell Clark said.

Blackwell Clark recently worked as communications director for the Alzheimer’s Association of Ohio. She previously was director of public relations for one of Ohio’s two historically Black colleges, Central State University. She has served as editor and publisher of several southwest Ohio newspapers, including the Middletown Journal and the Hamilton Journal News. She also was a reporter and, later, an assistant managing editor for the Dayton Daily News.

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“I’m really excited to get her fresh perspective as someone who grew up in the news business, spent a ton of time in the business and now is coming back into the business,” said Amalie Nash, senior vice president of local news for Dispatch parent company Gannett.

Blackwell Clark said her top priority will be figuring out how to best engage with readers and grow the paper’s digital subscriptions.

“What we need to be doing and what we always do is hold the powerful accountable,” she said.

The lifelong Ohioan earned a bachelor’s degree in communications from Ohio University and a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Dayton.