Bill Keller, Accidental Reporter
Times chief files from Tehran
As you no doubt noticed this weekend, The New York Times had an important byline on its front page: that of Executive Editor Bill Keller. Keller is no stranger to the reporting-and-writing trenches; he came up as a foreign correspondent, served stints in Moscow and Johannesburg, and won the Pulitzer Prize in 1989 for covering the fall of the Soviet Union. He also served as an op-ed columnist and Times Magazine writer in the early part of this decade. But since he became executive editor, in the summer of 2003, Keller has written only a handful of articles for the paper, nearly all on his old areas of expertise: South Africa and Russia, according the paper’s online archive. What prompted him to pull a Tom Friedman and suddenly jet to the Middle East? “He went because he had long wanted to visit Iran and the occasion of the election seemed like a great time to do so, accompanying our reporter, Robert Worth,” Times spokesman Diane McNulty told Tablet. “Bill had not planned to write articles, but when the story got so big, he did so.” She said the executive editor arrived early last week and has no definite departure date.