WaPo Video Journalist Leaves Newspaper for Harvard Business School

Akira Hakuta is leaving WaPo to attend Harvard Business School in the fall. The editors are “disappointed” to see him go, but wish him well in his new “great opportunity.”

An excerpt from the extremely long internal memo:

“Some of Akira’s most memorable and creative work includes his pioneering ideas on recurring shows such as Dana Milbank’s popular ‘Washington Sketch’ series, TV Dinners with Tom Sietsema and most recently Fast Fix with Chris Cillizza. You may remember the humorous ‘Eastern Media Elite’ video from the Republican National Convention in 2008 or the headless food videos where Akira had to creatively protect Tom’s identity each week.”

See the full memo…

Akira Hakuta will be leaving The Post to attend Harvard Business School
this fall. While we are disappointed to see him leave, we know this is a
great opportunity for him to apply his creative talents in a completely
different way. His last day will be June 3rd.

Over the past six years, Akira has presented strong, thought-provoking
videos on myriad subjects in a variety of styles. He has produced local
breaking news videos including the time he was temporarily detained by the
NSA en route to covering a sinkhole on the Baltimore Washington Parkway.
During the 2008 presidential campaign Akira spent countless long nights
reporting and editing videos from various towns across the country
culminating with the team-produced  “In the Moment” video on the
inauguration of President Obama.

Some of Akira’s most memorable and creative work includes his pioneering
ideas on recurring shows such as Dana Milbank’s popular ‘Washington Sketch’
series, TV Dinners with Tom Sietsema and most recently Fast Fix with Chris
Cillizza. You may remember the humorous “Eastern Media Elite” video from
the Republican National Convention in 2008 or the headless food videos
where Akira had to creatively protect Tom’s identity each week.

Akira’s creative and innovative ability to conceive, design and present
shows and stories in new ways has helped shape the direction and
presentation of video for The Washington Post. Producing more than 100
shows for millions of viewers as managing producer for Fast Fix, Akira has
lead the industry in a new form of storytelling with strong visual content
that presents interesting information relevant to the day’s political news.

Akira has been a vital part of the newsroom and the video team. Our
audience will miss his creative approach to visual storytelling and his
coworkers will miss his strong work ethic, positive demeanor and helpful
attitude.

Please join me in congratulating him on this accomplishment.

David | Steven