Wall Street Journal, Its Newsroom Unsettled, Names a New Editor


Four days before the 2016 presidential election, The Journal broke the news of a $150,000 payoff made by the company that owns The National Enquirer to the former Playboy model Karen McDougal, who claimed to have had a relationship with Mr. Trump. More recently, the paper has been aggressive in its coverage of Michael Cohen, a lawyer for Mr. Trump, and his payment of $130,000 to Stephanie Clifford, the adult film star known as Stormy Daniels, who has said that she had a sexual relationship with Mr. Trump in 2006.

Mr. Baker’s replacement, Mr. Murray, is a 24-year veteran of Dow Jones and the Journal’s current executive editor. He will begin his new job on June 11.

His first task is likely to be mending staff morale. The departures of top talent have been significant: last month, three former Journal reporters received Pulitzer Prizes — for their work at The Washington Post. (Mr. Baker’s reporting crew received one Pulitzer during his tenure, for an investigation into health care data.)

A Washington native who was educated at Northwestern University, Mr. Murray, 52, will take charge of a newsroom during one of the most intense, and intensely scrutinized, news environments in recent history. He started at the company in 1994 and became The Journal’s banking reporter in 1997 before rising through the editing ranks. In 2013, he became a deputy to Mr. Baker.

He is the author of a ”The Father and the Son: My Father’s Journey into the Monastic Life,” which tells the story of his father, a former civil servant who entered a monastery, as well as the co-author, with the former New York City fire commissioner Thomas Von Essen, of “Strong of Heart.”

“I have no doubt that Matt is a worthy successor as editor in chief and will be a leader of the highest commitment and integrity,” Robert Thomson, the chief executive of News Corp, said in a statement. “His strong reporting and editing background and his passion for the Journal are obvious to all who have the privilege of working with him.”

On Tuesday evening, Mr. Murray wrote on Twitter that he was “humbled and excited” about his new role. He added: “We’ve made great strides and are doing so much great work — and there is much more to come!”


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