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Leonard Downie, Jr., Executive Editor of The Washington Post, to Retire

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WASHINGTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--June 23, 2008--Leonard Downie, Jr., who has served as executive editor of The Washington Post since September 1, 1991, has decided to retire in the fall of 2008. No successor has been named.

Len's extraordinary news judgment, his ferocious sense of fairness, his honesty with the staff and with the stories, and his work ethic made him the great newspaper editor of his time, said Donald E. Graham, chairman and chief executive officer of The Washington Post Company (NYSE:WPO), which owns the newspaper. Katharine Weymouth, publisher of The Washington Post, added, Len is one of a kind. He has guided The Washington Post with a steady and unerring hand. Under his leadership, our newspaper grew better each year, and our web site blossomed. Len's legacy is enormous.

Under Downie's leadership, Washington Post reporters and editors have won 25 Pulitzer Prizes, including six in 2008.

Downie, 66, joined The Post as a summer intern in 1964. He became a well-known local investigative reporter in Washington, specializing in crime, courts, housing and urban affairs. This reporting won him two Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild Front Page awards, The American Bar Association Gavel Award for legal reporting and the John Hancock Award for excellent business and financial writing.

He worked on The Post's Metro staff as a reporter and editor for 15 years and was assistant managing editor for Metro news from 1974 until 1979. As deputy Metro editor, Downie supervised The Post's Watergate coverage. He was named London correspondent in 1979 and returned to Washington in 1982 as National editor. In 1984, he became managing editor of the newspaper.

Downie is the author of four books: Justice Denied (1971); Mortgage on America (1974); The New Muckrakers (1976), a study of investigative reporting; and (with Robert G. Kaiser) The News About the News: American Journalism in Peril (2002). He was also a major contributor to Ten Blocks from the White House: Anatomy of the Washington Riots of 1968, a Washington Post book. In 2003, The News About the News won the Goldsmith Award from the Joan Shorenstein Center at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government.

CONTACT: The Washington Post Company
Rima Calderon, 202-334-6617

SOURCE: The Washington Post Company