Deborah Cowan, NPR’s CFO and treasurer, will leave the network later this year.
“I’ve decided to move on and end what has been an incredibly rewarding career with NPR,” she said in an email to staff shared by CEO John Lansing earlier this year. “It has truly been an honor and privilege to work with the teams I’ve managed, staff, Member stations, directors, and trustees to see NPR grow and accomplish so much over the 12 plus years I have been here.”
Lansing said Cowan will work “through the spring.” She has not shared the date of her final day with the organization, according to a spokesperson.
“Debbie has committed herself to building trust in NPR’s financial stewardship and ensuring our financial success,” Lansing wrote in the email. “Her steady hand and no-nonsense, clear-eyed approach have earned her the respect of staff and her peers in the industry.”
“She has expertly shepherded NPR through financial challenges and also periods of significant growth, including the move to our current headquarters in NoMa,” Lansing added. “Her team’s refinancings of NPR’s debt not only saved NPR millions of dollars, but also provided for the recent tech rebuild and office renovation for the NY Bureau.”
Cowan joined NPR in 2010. In 2021, she served as interim CEO when Lansing was on medical leave. She has also led NPR’s crisis management team.
“Throughout the pandemic, Debbie has led the charge in helping us weather incredibly complex challenges, working to support our staff and operations in countless ways and keep us safe,” Lansing wrote.