Public media newsroom Center for Public Integrity hires NPR veteran Ellen Weiss, PBS exec Christine Montgomery

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Ellen Weiss, the NPR News chief who took the network’s blame for the Juan Williams affair, will join the Center for Public Integrity as its executive editor as of Oct. 3, the watchdog newsroom announced today. The center is headed by one of her predecessors at NPR, Bill Buzenberg. “Ellen Weiss is one of the best and most creative news executives in the business,” he said in a news release.

CPI hired three other top editors including Christine Montgomery, the center’s new chief digital officer, who was managing editor of for two years while it expanded and then sharply reduced its online news plans. Montgomery is also president of the Online News Association, which holds its annual meeting this week in Boston.

Weiss worked at NPR News for most of its first 29 years, including 12 as e.p. of All Things Considered and head of the National Desk and the past five as senior v.p. for news, managing more than 400 staffers, a $75 million budget and 36 news bureaus.

The center, based in Washington, D.C., also hired former Washington Post reporter R. Jeffrey Smith as managing editor of its National Security Desk; Australian journalist Gerard Ryle as director of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists; and investigative journalist John Dunbar as managing editor of its Financial Desk.

Since 1990 the nonprofit, nonpartisan center has released more than 475 investigative reports and 17 books on aspects of accountability for government and other major institutions.

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