Ann Devroy

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Ann Devroy
Born Ann Mary Devroy
(1948-10-09)9 October 1948
Green Bay, Wisconsin
Died 23 October 1997(1997-10-23) (aged 49)
Washington, D.C.
Education B.A., Journalism, 1970
University of Wisconsin–Eau Claire
Occupation Political journalist
Spouse(s) Mark Matthews
Children Sarah Matthews

Ann Mary Devroy (/ˈdɛvrɔɪ/ DEV-roy;1948–1997) was an American political journalist. She was a White House correspondent for 15 years, for the Gannett Company, USA Today (1979–1985), and The Washington Post (1989–1997). She covered four presidents including Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush and Bill Clinton, and 10 White House chiefs of staff.[1]

Life and career[edit]

Ann Mary Devroy was born October 9, 1948, in Green Bay, Wisconsin. While she was a journalism student at the University of Wisconsin–Eau Claire, she interned at the Milwaukee Journal and worked as a reporter for the Eau Claire Leader-Telegram. After she received her bachelor's degree in 1970 Devroy began working for the Courier News, a New Jersey newspaper owned by the Gannett Company. In 1977 she moved to Gannett's Washington bureau. She covered Congress for two years before becoming White House correspondent for Gannett and its new national newspaper, USA Today.

In 1985 Devroy joined The Washington Post as political editor on the national news desk—a job that would allow her to spend more time with her young daughter.[2] As deputy national editor, Devroy directed coverage of the 1988 Presidential campaign.[3] In 1989 she returned to the White House beat. Andrew Rosenthal of The New York Times, who was Devroy's main competition, described her as "the scariest and most generous reporter I've ever known. She would kick your butt 24 hours a day."[1]

She was also a prolific reporter. Over 2,300 stories carrying Ann Devroy's byline appeared in The Post from 1989 through 1995.[4]

Devroy was not part of the Washington TV punditocracy.[5] She turned down frequent requests to appear on camera participating in press panels.[2] Devroy made a rare television appearance as Tim Russert's guest on his CNBC show March 28, 1994.[6]

"Ann Devroy was the toughest and fairest White House reporter I knew,” said George Stephanopoulos, senior adviser to President Clinton in his first term. "She knew when she had a story, and she knew when to kill one. She revered the office of the presidency and the role that reporters play in keeping it honest."[7]

In May 1994 Devroy received a journalism award from the Gerald R. Ford Foundation, for distinguished reporting on the presidency. She received the foundation's seventh annual prize for her articles on President Clinton's foreign policy and his effort to sell his domestic program, Vice President Al Gore's record and an evaluation of former president George H. W. Bush.[8][9]

Devroy died at her home in Washington October 23, 1997, age 49, of uterine cancer.[10] President Bill Clinton issued a statement that day on learning of her death: "For more than a decade, no journalist dominated and defined the White House beat with the kind of skill, shrewd analysis and gruff grace that Ann brought to her reporting."[11]


After Ann Devroy's death, The Washington Post created an annual journalism fellowship at the University of Wisconsin–Eau Claire.[12] Featured speakers at the Ann Devroy Memorial Forum are listed below.


  1. ^ a b Smith, J. Y. (October 24, 1997). "Ann Devroy Dies; Covered White House for Post". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2016-10-14. 
  2. ^ a b Broder, David S. (October 24, 1997). "The Core of the Press Corps; Ann Devroy Fiercely Embraced a Tough Job". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2016-10-14. 
  3. ^ McCaslin, John, The Washington Times, October 24, 1997
  4. ^ Kaiser, Robert G., remarks at Ann Devroy's memorial service November 1, 1997; reprinted in the pamphlet Ann Devroy of The Washington Post: Colleagues Remember a Woman and Her Work, page 41
  5. ^ Shepard, Alicia C. (September 1995). "The Pundit Explosion". American Journalism Review. University of Maryland, College Park: Philip Merrill College of Journalism. Archived from the original on June 1, 2012. Retrieved 2016-10-14. 
  6. ^ March 28, 1994, episode information, Tim Russert, CNBC
  7. ^ News Bureau (May 10, 2004). "George Stephanopoulos Pledges $25,000 to UW-Eau Claire Foundation's Devroy Fund". University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. Archived from the original on May 20, 2014. Retrieved 2016-04-05. 
  8. ^ "Past Reporting Prize Recipients". Gerald R. Ford Presidential Foundation. Retrieved 2016-10-14. 
  9. ^ "Two Post Reporters Win Ford Journalism Awards; Presidential, Pentagon Coverage Cited". The Washington Post. May 7, 1994. Retrieved 2016-10-14. Ann Devroy was honored for presidential coverage and Barton Gellman for coverage of the Pentagon and defense issues. 
  10. ^ "Ann Devroy, 49, who covered the White House". The Baltimore Sun. October 24, 1997. Retrieved 2015-07-19. 
  11. ^ Clinton, William J., "Statement on the Death of Ann Devroy" October 23, 1997. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project at the University of California, Santa Barbara
  12. ^ "History of the Forum". Ann Devroy Memorial Forum. Communication and Journalism Department, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. Archived from the original on March 4, 2016. Retrieved 2016-10-14. 
  13. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r "Presenters". Ann Devroy Memorial Forum. Communication and Journalism Department, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. Retrieved 2016-10-14. 
  14. ^ "Award-winning politics editor is 2016 Devroy speaker". News, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. March 31, 2016. Retrieved 2016-04-05. 

External links[edit]