USA TODAY has promoted Kristen Go to executive editor for news and initiatives, a move that elevates her to the newsroom’s highest-ranking positions.
Go will supervise teams covering consumer news and technology, life and entertainment, travel, education, and enterprise reporting focused on equity issues such as race, identity and social justice. She will report to Editor-in-Chief Nicole Carroll.
In addition, USA TODAY on Friday announced new senior leadership roles for three other journalists:
Kristen DelGuzzi, who becomes managing editor for opinion.Michelle Maltais, who becomes managing editor for consumer news.Caren Bohan, who becomes managing editor for politics and Washington.
Carroll said the promotions and new senior roles will help give editors more breathing room “to do bold, ambitious work.”
“We’re covering once-in-a-lifetime stories that are reshaping the nation,” she said. “We need hard-charging editors at the top to help us meet the moment.”
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Go joined USA TODAY in 2018 to co-lead national news coverage. Reporters and editors under her direction exposed deadly and dangerous conditions in migrant detention centers and revealed how racist policies of the past and present fueled COVID-19 deaths in communities of color, among other enterprise projects. She also oversaw an ambitious international project – “1619: Searching for Answers” – that recounted the first enslaved Africans brought to the English-speaking colonies that became America and the deep, ongoing impact since then.
Go said in her new position she would work shoulder-to-shoulder with Jeff Taylor, executive editor for news and network enterprise, who oversees other aspects of national, political and economic coverage. USA TODAY has two other executive editors: Patty Michalski, executive editor for audience, and Chris Davis, vice president and executive editor for investigations.
“I look forward to continuing our mission of helping inform and engage readers with stories that better reflect our country, through every lens that touches people’s lives,” Go said.
Carroll said Go distinguished herself as a newsroom leader and in efforts to drive more diversity, equity and inclusion by “advocating for the right resources, advocating for the right coverage and advocating that we truly reflect the communities that we serve.”
“It’s her combination of being an incredible journalist, an incredible leader and a great person and mentor that makes her perfect for this job,” Carroll said.
An editor and reporter for nearly 25 years, Go is one of the highest-ranking Asian women in the news industry and is the first Asian journalist to hold the position of executive editor at USA TODAY.
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Early in her career, Go said, she took part in a training program for journalists of color created by John Quinn, a USA TODAY founding editor and the paper’s second top editor, who died in 2017.
“I am a byproduct of the vision they created, and I am really excited to help lead this news organization,” she said.
Previously in her career, Go served as managing editor of digital for the San Francisco Chronicle and as director of special projects for the Investigative Reporting Program at the University of California, Berkeley, School of Journalism. She was also part of a Denver Post team that won the 2000 Pulitzer Prize for coverage of the Columbine High School shootings.
Among the other editing changes, DelGuzzi moves into the role of managing editor for opinion overseeing the editorial board, after serving as managing editor for politics and world.
DelGuzzi said she will continue to emphasize USA TODAY’s tradition of editorial work on civil discourse and support of the First Amendment, as well as maintaining an open dialogue with readers.
“We are in such a unique place being the nation’s newspaper,” she said. “I really want us to be able to connect with our audience in innovative ways that feel relevant to them and that make them feel part of the conversation, not just words on a page or words on a screen.”
DelGuzzi joined the paper in 2018 and led coverage of the Trump administration, the 2020 presidential election, the Mueller investigation, the confirmation of two Supreme Court justices, two impeachments, and reporting from inside Iran. She previously worked at The Arizona Republic, where she oversaw politics coverage and rose to a senior position as director of digital and audience growth before joining USA TODAY.
She was a member of a Republic and USA TODAY Network team that won a 2018 Pulitzer Prize for a deep examination of President Donald Trump’s pledge to construct a wall along the U.S. border with Mexico.
Maltais, as managing editor for consumer news, will supervise coverage that includes consumer issues, technology and travel. She joined USA TODAY in 2018 as an editor in Money and Tech, overseeing coverage of retail, food and technology.
“One primary mission of our coverage team is to report and reflect what’s important to our readers as consumers – shoppers and savers – to help them feel confident and informed in areas they spend their time and money,” Maltais said. “We aim to continue and enhance an ongoing conversation with readers in areas such as shopping, technology and travel that impact their lives and to shine a light on issues of access and equity as well.”
Prior to joining USA TODAY, Maltais worked for the Los Angeles Times, where she worked as a technology reporter and in various roles including newsroom broadcast executive producer and deputy director of audience engagement. She was part of a team that won the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for breaking news coverage of the San Bernardino terrorist attack.
Maltais describes herself as a “proud first-generation American.” She’s the daughter of a Jamaican immigrant who worked her way through college to earn a doctorate and raised Maltais as a single mom.
Bohan replaces DelGuzzi as managing editor for politics and Washington. Bohan joined USA TODAY in 2018 as its Washington editor, and later added duties as deputy bureau chief, after working four years as a White House and politics editor at Reuters.
Before that, Bohan spent nine years as a White House reporter, covering Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama in a job that took her across the world.
She also is a former economics reporter who covered Wall Street and financial markets in New York and economic policy in Washington. Bohan served as president of the White House Correspondents Association from 2011-2012.
“I’m excited about teaming up with journalists throughout the network,’’ she said, referring to the USA TODAY Network, “on stories about the Biden administration and the impact of its policies on people around the country…Having reported on Washington and politics for a long time, I love finding ways to engage an audience well outside the Beltway on politics.”