WASHINGTON, D.C. — Nov. 9, 2011: The Root, the Washington Post Co.’s African-American news and commentary site, announced that Managing Editor Joel Dreyfuss is stepping down after two years at The Root.
The Haitian-born journalism veteran announced that he is moving to Paris (where he spent a large portion of his childhood) to work on a book focusing on the history of Haiti and his family’s role in it. He came to the Washington Post Co.-owned website with more than 40 years’ experience in print, broadcast and online publications, including stints as a senior editor at Fortune, editor of PC Magazine and editor-in-chief at Red Herring, Information Week and Urban Box Office. Early in his career he was a reporter in the Style section of the Washington Post and executive editor of Black Enterprise. He is a founder of the National Association of Black Journalists.
“This has been a difficult decision because I love The Root,” said Dreyfuss. “It has given me a great opportunity to apply 40-plus years of journalistic experience to an idea that for a long time existed only in my head: a first-rate editorial product with a multitude of consistent and intelligent black perspectives. I’m grateful to Henry Louis Gates Jr. (The Root’s editor-in-chief) and Donald Graham (chairman of the Washington Post Co.) for launching The Root and toThe Root‘s publisher, Donna Byrd, for giving me the opportunity to lead the team for the past two years.”
Dreyfuss will be departing at the end of November and will be succeeded by Sheryl Huggins Salomon, The Root’s deputy editor. Dreyfuss brought Salomon to the site in February 2010 after her tenure as managing editor of AOL Black Voices. Salomon has also been the editor-in-chief of NiaOnline.com, which focused on black women’s interests; and the president and publisher of Shade, an urban lifestyle magazine. She has also held positions at Fortune.com’s Small Business website, Dow Jones Newswires and the Asbury Park Press. She is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and the Columbia University School of Journalism.
“We are thrilled to have Sheryl lead The Root into this exciting new chapter,” said The Root’s publisher, Donna Byrd. “Sheryl is passionate about the importance of delivering smart black news and original commentary and deeply committed to moving the news site to the next level of success.”
Dreyfuss leaves the news site in excellent shape. The site has built a strong editorial team, and the site’s traffic has grown in healthy double digits over the last two years — setting new records in traffic and readership while raising its profile as a respected source of thoughtful, analytical journalism.
About The Root
The Root is the top online source for news and original commentary from an African-American perspective. Founded in 2008 under the leadership of Professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. of Harvard University, The Root offers a fresh take on breaking news, as well as solid analysis on politics, social issues and culture. The Root raises the profile of black voices in mainstream media and engages anyone interested in black culture around the world. The Root is owned by the Washington Post Co. (NYSE: WPO). Visit The Root at theroot.com, on Twitter @TheRoot247 and on Facebook.