Martin Baron

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Martin Baron
Baron at the 2018 Pulitzer Prizes
Born (1954-10-24) October 24, 1954 (age 67)
Alma materLehigh University
Notable credit(s)
The Boston Globe,
The New York Times,
The Washington Post,
The Los Angeles Times,
The Miami Herald

Martin Baron (born October 24, 1954) is an American journalist who was editor of The Washington Post from December 31, 2012, until his retirement on February 28, 2021.[1] He was previously the editor of The Boston Globe from 2001 to 2012.

Baron achieved heightened prominence in 2015 and 2016 from his portrayal in the film Spotlight and his involvement in the release of Jason Rezaian, the Tehran bureau chief for The Washington Post, who was released in January 2016 after being imprisoned in Iran for 18 months.[2]

Early life and education[edit]

Baron was born to a Jewish family in Tampa, Florida.[3] His parents immigrated from Israel. He attended Berkeley Preparatory School and worked on the school's student paper. He matriculated at Lehigh University where he was editor of The Brown and White student newspaper. He earned both a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and MBA with honors in four years, graduating in 1976.[4] He had received special permission to take graduate classes as an undergraduate.[5] Baron is fluent in Spanish.[6]


In 1976, after graduation, Baron began working for The Miami Herald; he moved to The Los Angeles Times in 1979, and to The New York Times in 1996.[7] He returned to the Herald as executive editor in 2000 and led coverage of numerous key stories, including Elián González's return to Cuba and the 2000 election.[8]

In July 2001, Baron succeeded Matthew V. Storin as executive editor of The Boston Globe.[9][10] His editorial term at the Globe shifted the paper's coverage from international events toward locally centered investigative journalism. The Globe's coverage of the Boston Catholic sexual abuse scandal earned it a Pulitzer Prize in 2003.[4][7]

In 2012, Baron was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.[11]

The Washington Post[edit]

In January 2013, Baron took over as executive editor of The Washington Post, succeeding Marcus Brauchli.[12] In 2014, The Post won two Pulitzer Prizes, one in the category of public service for revelations of secret surveillance by the National Security Agency and the other for explanatory journalism about food stamps in America. The next year, it won the Pulitzer Prize for national reporting for its coverage of security lapses in the Secret Service; in 2016, it won the Pulitzer Prize in the category of national reporting for a groundbreaking project that chronicled every killing by a police officer in 2015. The next year, it won the Pulitzer Prize for national reporting for exposing Donald Trump's claims of charitable giving and the Access Hollywood tape. In 2018, it won two Pulitzer Prizes, one in the category of investigative reporting for revealing allegations of sexual misconduct by Roy Moore and the other for national reporting on Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

Baron supervised the writing team, including co-authors Michael Kranish and Marc Fisher, that researched the 2016 biography Trump Revealed: An American Journey of Ambition, Ego, Money, and Power.[13]

For his work in journalism, Baron was awarded the 2016 Hitchens Prize.[14] In 2017, he received the Al Neuharth Award for Excellence in Media.[15]

In May 2019, Baron said in defense of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange: "Dating as far back as the Pentagon Papers case and beyond, journalists have been receiving and reporting on information that the government deemed classified. Wrongdoing and abuse of power were exposed. With the new indictment of Julian Assange, the government is advancing a legal argument that places such important work in jeopardy and undermines the very purpose of the First Amendment."[16]

In January 2020, Baron criticized a Post reporter who sent a Tweet about the Kobe Bryant sexual assault case after Bryant's death. The reporter, Felicia Sonmez, was later suspended. The Washington Post guild criticized the move and she was reinstated.[17] Baron issued a three-page statement but did not apologize.[18]

In January 2021, via an internal memo, Baron announced his retirement from The Washington Post effective February 28, 2021.[19] In his note, he advocated for Section 230 protections for social media companies.[20]

Popular culture[edit]

In the 2015 film Spotlight, which focuses on The Boston Globe's coverage of the Boston Catholic Church's priest child molestation scandal, Baron is played by Liev Schreiber.[21] The film won the award for Best Picture at the 88th Academy Awards.[22]


  1. ^ Robertson, Katie. "Marty Baron Will Retire From The Washington Post". The New York Times. Retrieved 26 January 2021.
  2. ^ Mullin, Benjamin (17 January 2016). "Washington Post confirms: Jason Rezaian has left Iran". The Poynter Institute. Retrieved 22 January 2019.
  3. ^ Starobin, Paul (December 17, 2012). "Martin Baron's Plan to Save The Washington Post". The New Republic.
  4. ^ a b Paul Starobin (17 December 2012). "Martin Baron's Plan to Save The Washington Post". The New Republic. Retrieved 13 February 2016.
  5. ^ MacMillan, Amanda. "Marty Baron '76: The Baron of D.C.," Lehigh University Department of Journalism & Communication.
  6. ^ Silver, James (October 30, 2016). "Martin Baron: 'We took Donald Trump seriously from the beginning'". The Guardian. Retrieved 29 December 2016.
  7. ^ a b Holmes, Baxter (November 24, 2015). "Is Martin Baron the Best News Editor of All Time?". Esquire. Retrieved 23 March 2017.
  8. ^ "Biography: Martin Baron | Reporting an Explosive Truth: The Boston Globe and Sexual Abuse in the Catholic Church". Retrieved 2017-10-02.
  9. ^ Kennedy, Dan (July 19, 2001). "Goodbye to all that: Marty Baron's arrival at the Boston Globe marks not just the end of the Matt Storin era, but of the Tom Winship era as well Archived 2010-10-23 at the Wayback Machine". The Phoenix (Boston). Retrieved 23 March 2017.
  10. ^ The Boston Globe (July 2, 2001). "Martin Baron of The Miami Herald is named Editor of The Boston Globe as Globe Editor Matthew V. Storin announces his retirement" Archived 2007-03-13 at the Wayback Machine. Press release.
  11. ^ "Daniel Day-Lewis celebrates with American Academy of Arts and Sciences inductees in Cambridge". 2012-10-07. Retrieved 2017-10-03.
  12. ^ "Washington Post Timeline". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on 24 February 2016. Retrieved 7 February 2016.
  13. ^ Calderone, Michael (April 11, 2016), "The Washington Post Plans To Write The Book On Donald Trump - But the paper isn't expecting to hold back scoops in the process.", The Huffington Post, retrieved June 22, 2017
  14. ^ "2016 Prize - Marty Baron". The Dennis & Victoria Ross Foundation.
  15. ^ "USD Honors Washington Post Editor Marty Baron with 2017 Al Neuharth Award for Excellence in The Media | USD". Retrieved 2017-10-02.
  16. ^ "Washington Post, New York Times editors blast Assange indictment". The Hill. May 24, 2019.
  17. ^ Abrams, Rachel (January 27, 2020). "Washington Post Suspends a Reporter After Her Tweets on Kobe Bryant". New York Times. New York. Retrieved January 27, 2020.
  18. ^ Darcy, Oliver (January 31, 2020). "Washington Post's top editor sends memo to staff after backlash over handling of reporter's Kobe Bryant tweets". CNN. Retrieved January 31, 2020.
  19. ^ Stelter, Brian (January 26, 2021). "Washington Post editor Marty Baron announces his retirement". CNN. Retrieved January 26, 2021.
  20. ^ "Ex-Washington Post editor: Big Tech does 'a lot of harm' but has 'advantages'". Retrieved 2021-11-28.
  21. ^ "Spotlight (2015/I)". IMDb. Retrieved 13 February 2016.
  22. ^ Horton, Helena (2016-02-29). "Spotlight shocks by winning Best Picture Oscar at the Academy Awards". Daily Telegraph. ISSN 0307-1235. Retrieved 2017-10-03.

External links[edit]

Preceded by Editor of The Boston Globe
Succeeded by
Preceded by Executive Editor of The Washington Post
Succeeded by