Washington Post political editor to give Schatt Lecture

Steven Ginsberg, the national political editor of The Washington Post, will be the featured speaker at the sixth annual Paul J. Schatt Memorial Lecture at Arizona State University.

Ginsberg will discuss covering the 2012 presidential election on Thursday, March 29, at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication.

Leonard Downie Jr., who as executive editor of the Post oversaw Ginsberg’s work for nearly 15 years, will serve as moderator. Downie is now the Weil Family Professor of Journalism at the Cronkite School and vice president-at-large of the Post.

The lecture will begin at 7 p.m. in Cronkite’s First Amendment Forum. It is free and open to the public.

“Steven will take us inside The Washington Post's innovative multimedia coverage of an extraordinarily exciting and significant election campaign, describing how he manages the fast-paced changes in digital-age political coverage while preserving the credibility and authority the Post has built over decades,” Downie said. “There could be no better guide to the news media's role in the 2012 elections.”

Ginsberg began his journalism career at the Post in 1994. He covered local and state politics in Virginia for a number of years before moving to the regional transportation beat. In 2006, he became a metro editor, and the following year he was part of the editing team that won a Pulitzer Prize for coverage of the mass shootings at Virginia Tech.

A self-described “campaign addict,” Ginsberg was part of the Post’s national political team for the 2008 presidential election as well as the top editor of its coverage of the Virginia gubernatorial race the following year. He rejoined the paper’s national political staff in 2010 as deputy political editor, leading coverage of that year’s midterm elections. He was named the Post’s national political editor in 2011.

Downie served as executive editor of the Post from 1991 to 2008, during which time the paper won 25 Pulitzer Prizes. During his 44 years at the Post, Downie was an investigative reporter, editor on the local and national news staffs, London correspondent and managing editor and helped supervise the newspaper’s Watergate coverage.

The Cronkite School established the Schatt lecture series in 2007 in honor of longtime Arizona Republic reporter, editor and columnist Paul Schatt, who was an adjunct faculty member at the Cronkite School for more than 30 years. The series is supported by an annual gift from the Arizona Republic and an endowment created in Schatt’s memory by his widow, Laura Schatt-Thede.