Washington Post editorial page editor Fred Hiatt dead at 66
WASHINGTON (AP) — Fred Hiatt, a foreign correspondent who rose in 2000 to become The Washington Post’s editorial page editor, died Monday at a hospital in New York City. He was 66.
According to the Post, his wife, Margaret “Pooh” Shapiro, said Hiatt had cardiac arrest while visiting his daughter in Brooklyn, N.Y., on Nov. 24 and did not regain consciousness.
The Post said for two decades, Hiatt either wrote or edited nearly every unsigned editorial published by the newspaper — more than 1,000 a year. He also edited the opinion columns published on the paper’s op-ed page and website.
“Over the past two decades, Fred’s leadership made The Post’s editorial page into the most consequential in the news industry,” the newspaper quoted Washington Post publisher and chief executive Frederick J. Ryan Jr. as saying in a statement to the staff. “A 40-year veteran of The Post, he built friendships throughout the company and made immense contributions as a writer, an editor, and a mentor to so many across the organization. His legacy also spans the globe: Few journalists have rivaled his idealism and complete dedication to the causes of democracy and human rights worldwide.”
Hiatt was a Post reporter for 15 years covering regional politics and national security and was a correspondent in Tokyo and Moscow before joining the editorial page in 1996. Four years later, he took over the editorial page.
Under his leadership, Hiatt worked to maintain The Post’s traditional editorial positions including support for civil rights, fiscal responsibility and international human rights. He oversaw Post editorials that called on China to allow dissent and to free its political prisoners, and advocated for abortion rights and campaign finance reform.
His tenure wasn’t without controversy.