bravo, maria

Houston Chronicle makes history with selection of new top editor

Houston Chronicle makes history with selection of new top editor

Maria Douglas Reeve
Maria Douglas Reeve is the first person of color to lead the Chronicle in its 120-year history. HoustonChronicle/Twitter

The Houston Chronicle has made history in naming its new face of editorial operations.

Maria Douglas Reeve, managing editor of the Chronicle since November 2019, is now the newspaper’s top editor, the Chron’s Paul Takahashi reports.

Notably, she is the first person of color to lead the publication in its 120-year history.

She will succeed Steve Riley, who announced in March that he will retire after a 41-year journalism career. Reeve most recently served at the Star Tribune in Minneapolis and the St. Paul Pioneer Press in Saint Paul, Minnesota, according to the Chronicle. She started her journalism career as a general assignment reporter at The Bradenton Herald in Florida.

Not four months after joining the Chronicle, Reeve was tackling the coronavirus pandemic, as well the historic oil bust and Texas blackouts. She earned high marks from the publication for deftly managing a remote staff.

“We didn’t have to look far to find the best person to become executive editor,” Hearst Newspapers president Jeff Johnson told the Chronicle. “Since Maria began working for the Chronicle in 2019, we have all seen her commanding leadership, creativity and dedication to providing our readers with the stories that matter most to them. We know she will continue to drive growth and important storytelling in the newsroom.”

Now, her goals include accelerating “the reinvention of the 120-year-old newspaper into a multi-platform media company, with a particular emphasis on online journalism,” Takahashi reports.

Readers, she says, should still expect the Chronicle to pursue the kind of public-service reporting that has garnered awards and a Pulitzer Prize nomination.