NPR will merge news and programming divisions

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NPR CEO John Lansing announced Tuesday that the network will combine its news and programming divisions.

Lansing said in a note to staff that the new structure will ensure NPR is “more united than ever in our efforts to strengthen our network and succeed in our mission to reach our current and future audiences wherever they consume NPR content.”

The change goes into effect Sept. 11. A chief content officer will lead the new division. Edith Chapin, SVP of news and editor in chief, will fill the role on an interim basis while NPR searches for a permanent CCO.

“The CCO will oversee all of NPR’s editorial output and content business operations,” Lansing wrote. “This will allow for clearer decision-making and better integration of our strategies across broadcast, podcast and digital.”

NPR’s total number of employees will not change. The network is creating a SVP of podcasting growth & franchise development from its existing headcount, Lansing wrote. 

In addition, several employees are taking on new titles and responsibilities:

  • Yolanda Sangweni, VP of programming and new content development, will become VP of content – cultural programming.
  • The role of Meg Brennan, VP of content business strategy & operations, will expand to manage the content division’s business strategy and operations. This will replace the news chief of staff position.
  • Senior Director Beth Donovan will become senior director of platform integration.
  • Laura Hogan, chief of staff to the SVP of programming & audience development, will be chief of staff to the CCO and have expanded responsibilities. 

Lansing first announced his plans to hire a CCO in September 2022. The same day, Nancy Barnes, then SVP of news, said she would leave NPR. 

Anya Grundmann, SVP of programming and audience development, announced last week that she will step down at the end of the year.

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