MIT lecturer to oversee Globe editorial page

Choice of Venkataraman ends long search

AFTER MORE THAN A YEAR of searching for a new editorial page editor, the Boston Globe announced on Wednesday that MIT lecturer Bina Venkataraman will take over the job in November.

On her website, Venkataraman describes herself as “a writer and leader who works at the intersection of social progress, emerging technology & environmental change.” Her first book – The Optimist’s Telescope, Thinking Ahead in a Reckless Agewas released in August.

In addition to lecturing at MIT, Venkataraman is also a fellow at New America and the director of global policy initiatives at the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT. She previously worked as a journalist at the New York Times and the Globe.

The Globe press release announcing her appointment was dated Tuesday but not released until Wednesday afternoon. The appointment appears to be the decision of Linda Henry, the Globe’s managing director and the wife of publisher John Henry; she was the only Globe official quoted in the press release.

Henry has been looking for a new editorial page editor since Ellen Clegg retired last year. She tried out business columnist Shirley Leung on an interim basis last August, but Leung left the post in May and resumed her column.

Meet the Author

Bruce Mohl

Editor, CommonWealth

About Bruce Mohl

Bruce Mohl is the editor of CommonWealth magazine. Bruce came to CommonWealth from the Boston Globe, where he spent nearly 30 years in a wide variety of positions covering business and politics. He covered the Massachusetts State House and served as the Globe’s State House bureau chief in the late 1980s. He also reported for the Globe’s Spotlight Team, winning a Loeb award in 1992 for coverage of conflicts of interest in the state’s pension system. He served as the Globe’s political editor in 1994 and went on to cover consumer issues for the newspaper. At CommonWealth, Bruce helped launch the magazine’s website and has written about a wide range of issues with a special focus on politics, tax policy, energy, and gambling. Bruce is a graduate of Ohio Wesleyan University and the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. He lives in Dorchester.

About Bruce Mohl

Bruce Mohl is the editor of CommonWealth magazine. Bruce came to CommonWealth from the Boston Globe, where he spent nearly 30 years in a wide variety of positions covering business and politics. He covered the Massachusetts State House and served as the Globe’s State House bureau chief in the late 1980s. He also reported for the Globe’s Spotlight Team, winning a Loeb award in 1992 for coverage of conflicts of interest in the state’s pension system. He served as the Globe’s political editor in 1994 and went on to cover consumer issues for the newspaper. At CommonWealth, Bruce helped launch the magazine’s website and has written about a wide range of issues with a special focus on politics, tax policy, energy, and gambling. Bruce is a graduate of Ohio Wesleyan University and the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. He lives in Dorchester.

Venkataraman seems a perfect fit for the Globe’s lefty editorial page. She is a graduate of Brown and the Harvard Kennedy School. She served as senior advisor for climate change innovation in the Obama administration. She has traveled the world but grew up in Ohio. And she is a big-time talking head, who has a host of speaking engagements lined up through the beginning of November.

In a statement issued by the Globe, she said she wants the editorial pages to attract more of the voices of Boston. “The Editorial Board will be looking for ways to rejuvenate and reinvent our editorial content to meet our readers where they are, while upholding the robust journalistic values of fairness and tough truth-telling that are the Globe’s hallmarks and legacy,” she said in the statement. “As we approach 2020, I believe we have an enormous responsibility to be arbiters of credible and level-headed political discourse, and to help our readers navigate the political landscape to make informed decisions.”