WaPo Announces New Director of Digital

WaPo has named Sarah Sampsel as new Director of Digital. She takes over for Justin Ferrell, who’s going on a Knight Fellowship at Stanford.

The internal memo could seriously give you narcolepsy. But there’s one noteworthy line: “If you follow her on Facebook, you know she’s a certified ski instructor and somewhat snobby about snow quality.”

As a sleep aid only, read on…

We are pleased to announce that Sarah Sampsel will become our new Director
of Digital, Mobile & New Product Design, leading all aspects of The Post’s
visual design and overall user experience on digital platforms. She will
also play a central role helping to shape and create new digital products
and tools.

Sarah will report to Post Visuals Editor David Griffin, and work closely
with Managing Editor Raju Narisetti and his team. Sarah will also help us
to define and improve our user experience, across our many offerings, to
ensure it is consistent and up to Post standards. She will also help with
cross-platform projects and coordination of digital and print design teams.

As Sarah will tell you, there is an infinite amount to do. She is at work
now on significant upgrades to our politics offerings; is redesigning our
blogs; re-imagining the next version of The Post’s flagship iPad app; and
is working with Raju and our business-side colleagues to set priorities on
other projects.

Sarah will assume all the duties of Justin Ferrell, who is leaving for a
Knight Fellowship at Stanford. Together, they have steered much of our web
design and user experience since Sarah joined The Post four years ago. As
department deputy for the past year, Sarah implemented the
washingtonpost.com redesign, and has crafted many improvements throughout
the site since.

Sarah has helped to train our print design team, helped to bring mobile
design and motion graphics in-house and designed a number of our mobile and
web products. Over the years, her award-winning hands-on work has included
numerous investigative and enterprise projects, including Top Secret
America and the first version of PostPolitics.com.

Originally from Erie, Pa., Sarah began her career at CyberInk and the Erie
Times-News, where she managed site design, marketing and advertising
projects, and created innovative content such as the first interactive
graphic for the paper’s website. Sarah also has taught web design courses
at the college level. If you follow her on Facebook, you know she’s a
certified ski instructor and somewhat snobby about snow quality.

As we continue to look for ways to engage more people with our offerings,
the interplay of content, design, technology and presentation in a rich
user experience has never been more vital for the Post and we are delighted
that Sarah will play a leadership role in this ongoing effort.

The digital design group: Katie Parker, Lin Zhuang, Joey Marburger, Grace
Koerber and Sohail al-Jamea will report to Sarah.

Please join us in congratulating Sarah, who formally begins her new role on
August 1.

Marcus                Raju                  David