Alan Rusbridger will step down from his role as Guardian News and Media editor-in-chief next year to chair the Scott Trust, which funds The Guardian‘s operations.
He will take up the position in 2016, replacing Dame Liz Forgan when her term ends, and is finishing up as editor-in-chief in mid-2015.
Liz Forgan described Mr Rusbridger as “the outstanding editor of his generation”.
“Fully embracing the opportunities of the digital age, he has built on the best traditions of his distinguished predecessors, transforming the Guardian from a print-only national newspaper into the world’s leading quality newspaper website,” she said.
She said the Scott Trust and the wider Guardian group would benefit from his experience in ensuring the masthead’s editorial independence and commercial survival.
Guardian Media Group chairman Neil Berkett said Mr Rusbridger’s appointment to lead The Scott Trust coincided with rapidly rising readership, continued innovation and secure finances at The Guardian.
“Alan has set the standard for journalistic leadership in the digital age,” Mr Berkett said.
“His successor will inherit a global media organisation in very strong health and with clear prospects for further growth.”
Mr Rusbridger steered The Guardian from a UK-only newspaper to a global media organisation that has achieved huge success across platforms.
Under his editorship The Guardian has won some of the world’s most prestigious journalism awards including the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for public service, for its articles based on Edward Snowden’s leaks on the National Security Agency’s surveillance activities; the UK Press Award for Newspaper of the Year, also for its government surveillance reporting; an Emmy, a Polk award and scoop of the year at Australia’s Walkley Awards.
Of his leap from editorial leadership to steering the future of the Guardian group, Mr Rusbridger said, “In global journalism, there are a handful of roles that have the capability to redefine our industry. I am privileged to have held one of those roles for 20 years, a period in which successful newspapers have become global content providers, reaching audiences in dramatically new and valuable ways.
“I am honoured to succeed the quite brilliant Liz Forgan as chair of The Scott Trust, preserving the independent editorial values and the long-term financial stability upon which our future depends.
“We have strong future leaders in place with unparalleled news and digital experience, and I know that our journalism will be in the best possible hands.”
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