Mark Katches, one of the country’s top investigative journalists and newsroom leaders, will become the executive editor of the Tampa Bay Times.
Katches’ background positions him to build on the Times’ strong record of investigative and enterprise journalism, and to help advance the Times’ digital initiatives and position the company for the future. Earlier this year, the Times added its first chief digital officer.
As the new executive editor, Katches follows Neil Brown, now the president of the Poynter Institute for Media Studies.
“I’m humbled by this unique opportunity to lead one of America’s best newsrooms,” Katches said. “The Times’ independence and commitment to telling stories that matter make it a community treasure. The newsroom is loaded with talent. I can’t wait to get started.”
Katches, 55, is the vice president of content and editor of The Oregonian. He also is responsible for OregonLive, a general interest website that recorded strong audience growth under his leadership.
A native of California, Katches graduated from San Jose State University with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. He also holds a diploma in social sciences from Flinders University in South Australia, and he completed the one-year Sulzberger Executive Leadership Program at Columbia University.
Katches began his career as a reporter at the Peninsula Times Tribune in Palo Alto, California. He also worked at the Los Angeles Daily News, where he covered several major enterprise stories, including the trial of O.J. Simpson. In 1996, Katches joined the Orange County Register as an enterprise and investigative reporter and eventually built the paper’s watchdog journalism team, producing two Pulitzer finalists.
Katches was named assistant managing editor for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel in 2006. He became the paper’s deputy managing editor in 2008 and led its investigative reporting team to two Pulitzer Prizes in three years.
In 2009, Katches helped launch California Watch at the Center for Investigative Reporting in Emeryville, California. He later was named editorial director at CIR, which won a bevy of prizes under Katches’ leadership, including a national Emmy Award and a George Foster Peabody Award.
While at CIR, Katches collaborated with the Tampa Bay Times on its groundbreaking investigative project, “America’s Worst Charities.” He joined The Oregonian as its editor in 2014.
“Mark will help build on the deep strengths of our news report and extend them more fully in digital dimensions,” said Paul Tash, chairman and chief executive of the Times. “He will be a splendid addition to our team.”
Katches also has taught as an adjunct professor at several universities and served as a board member for Investigative Reporters and Editors, a nonprofit dedicated to strengthening investigative reporting.
Katches starts with the Times in late August.