It’s Official: Raddatz to the White House

mraddatz.jpgABC will be the second network, after CNN, to have an all-female team heading up its White House coverage: Martha Raddatz will take Terry Moran‘s spot in the front row, confirming rumors from earlier this month.

“Martha joins the White House team with one of the most impressive resumes in journalism. For more than a decade, she’s broken major news on the defense and intelligence beat. Her expertise in national security and knowledge of Iraq and the Middle East provide invaluable in her new position at the White House,” ABC News President David Westin said.

A former NPRer, Raddatz is an accomplished veteran of the Pentagon and State Department beats for ABC. She’s best known recently for snapping the now infamous shot of President Bush playing the guitar in the aftermath of the Hurricane Katrina.

CNN, which currently has Dana Bash, Suzanne Malveaux, and Elaine Quijano assigned to the White House, became the first all-female team ever earlier this year when John King was elevated to roving national correspondent.

The paucity of women correspondents at the White House has come up repeatedly, including in June when Scott McClellan was challenged by the press corps about how the President wasn’t calling on women at his press conferences. McClellan said that it wasn’t the President’s fault: The major media organizations didn’t have women he could call on. “It’s a question of diversity within those organizations,” McClellan said. “I think it’s a question to direct to those organizations, not us.”

The full ABC release is after the jump.


November 15, 2005

ABC NEWS NAMES MARTHA RADDATZ SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT

ABC News’ Martha Raddatz has been named senior White House correspondent, ABC News President David Westin announced today. Ms. Raddatz, formerly the network’s senior national security correspondent, will report on all aspects of the Bush administration for “World News Tonight,” “Nightline,” and other ABC News broadcasts and platforms.

Mr. Westin said: “Martha joins the White House team with one of the most impressive résumés in journalism. For more than a decade, she’s broken major news on the defense and intelligence beat. Her expertise in national security and knowledge of Iraq and the Middle East provide invaluable in her new position at the White House.”

Named the network’s senior national security correspondent in May 2003, Ms. Raddatz filed almost daily on the war in Iraq. Since the war’s start in 2003, she has made nine trips to Iraq with senior Pentagon officials, more than any other TV journalist. She has also traveled frequently to Afghanistan.

Ms. Raddatz joined ABC News in 1999 as the network’s State Department correspondent. Her coverage at the State Department after the attacks of September 11th was recognized, along with other ABC News recipients, with a Peabody Award as well as an Emmy Award. From 1993-1998, Ms. Raddatz was the Pentagon correspondent for National Public Radio (NPR), where she reported on foreign policy, defense, and intelligence issues. Prior to joining NPR in 1993, Ms. Raddatz was the chief correspondent at the ABC News Boston affiliate WCVB-TV.

Ms. Raddatz’s journalism has been honored with several awards, including three Emmys and an Overseas Press Club award for her live coverage of the assassination of Yitzhak Rabin. Her reporting was also recognized with the National Headliner Award for team coverage of the 1988 presidential campaign, and two Radio and Television News Director Association first-place awards. In addition she has received two Associated Press first-place awards.

Ms. Raddatz is currently writing a book for G.P. Putnam’s Sons on a devastating battle she covered for ABC News “World News Tonight” and “Nightline” involving the siege of members of the Army’s 1st Cavalry Division Army’s by thousands of Iraqi insurgents.