Eric Rich appointed editor of Washington Post’s new ‘Rapid Response Investigative Team’
The Washington Post, which this afternoon just broke a story regarding a January between Blackwater founder Erik Prince (and brother of education secretary Betsy DeVos) and “a Russian close to President Vladimir Putin,” also found time to make a personnel announcement.
Eric Rich, who has served as Maryland editor in charge of police and court coverage, will become editor of the paper’s Rapid Response Investigative Team. Sounds like the Post is expecting some political news to turn into crime news (if it hasn’t already).
Here is the Post’s announcement:
Announcement from Jeff Leen, Investigative editor:
I am thrilled to announce that Eric Rich will become editor of The Post’s new Rapid Response Investigative Team. A veteran Post editor known for his smarts and collegiality, Eric has had impressive impact at every stage of his newsroom career. In seeking a leader for this new team, we were looking for investigative chops, knowledge of Washington, an ability to work with anybody and a thorough understanding of the digital universe. Eric checks all these boxes and then some. As Universal News Desk Editor since 2010, he has led The Post’s 24-hour hub operation through a period of remarkable readership growth and innovation. Eric’s work on the mobile and desktop homepages has helped make us consistently faster and more nimble than the competition.
Eric has also worked as a topic desk chief and served as Maryland editor in charge of police and court coverage, in one instance shedding light on how an inmate accused of killing a police officer died in county jail. He also led an investigation into the fatal shooting of a furniture deliveryman by a police corporal, documenting that the officer had been labeled a “potential danger” years earlier. Eric started on The Post’s local staff in 2004 covering federal courts and law enforcement agencies, with a focus on public corruption.
In three years as an investigative reporter at The Hartford Courant, Eric consistently landed revelatory stories. He tracked down a notorious pedophile priest, a one-time fugitive, living a secretive life on a Caribbean island. Eric revealed that the Church was deceiving a renowned psychiatric hospital by concealing past complaints against accused priests sent for treatment, allowing clergy to return to ministry with clinical cover unwittingly provided by the hospital. He detailed how judges granted Connecticut’s elites extraordinary secrecy in civil court by designating their cases as “secret files” to be shielded from public dockets. Reporting from Iraq, he wrote about an Army sniper who killed two Iraqi men under disputed circumstances.
Eric started in journalism as an intern at the Middletown (Conn.) Press, his hometown paper, compiling agate of marriage license applications and land transfers. In an earlier life, he ran a homeless shelter in London. He graduated from Grinnell College in Iowa and is married to Allison Klein, former Post journalist and now a freelance writer and editor. They live on Capitol Hill with their daughters, Lilah and Olive.