The Columbia Journalism Review is pleased to announce the appointment of Holly Yeager as its first Peterson Fellow, covering news media coverage of economic and fiscal policy.


The recent financial crisis presents an opportunity for the media to help Americans better understand—and have a voice in—the national conversation about the economy and its nervous system, the financial sector. But taking a broad view—including linking policies to long-term consequences for the U.S. and global economies—is hard for journalists at any time, and especially these days, with news outlets stretched to the limit amid dramatic shifts on Wall Street and in Washington.


Funded by the Peter G. Peterson Foundation, the Peterson Fellowship was created to encourage the business and Washington media to take the long view. Among other things, we’ll encourage the press to explore the national debate over the federal budget, the national debt, entitlement programs, and taxes; the impact of Washington economic policy on Wall Street and financial markets; the still-unknown public exposure to various financial stabilization measures and its impact on future economic policy choices; the fallout and long-term consequences of financial-sector reforms; the social consequences of the crisis, including wealth transfers resulting from foreclosures and other forms of economic dislocation; and the impact of the crisis on social mobility, income distribution, poverty, and personal savings and home-ownership rates.


Yeager is a Washington journalist who has written about public policy, national politics, the media business, national security, and American culture for nearly two decades. A staff writer for the Financial Times from 1999 to 2006, she served in key editorial positions during the paper’s rise to prominence in the U.S. market, including as senior columnist, U.S. media reporter, and international editor for Weekend FT in the paper’s New York bureau, and U.S. political correspondent in Washington. She has reported on everything from the 9/11 World Trade Center aftermath to the Dubai Ports World deal; covered the 2004 presidential election and led coverage of the 2006 Congressional races; and has written major profiles of Washington figures, including Hillary Clinton and Michelle Obama.

Her recent writing has appeared in The Daily Beast, The American Prospect, O: The Oprah Magazine (where the Obama profile appeared), and The Wilson Quarterly, where she published a well-regarded exploration on the progress and setbacks of women officers in the U.S. military. She is also a contributing editor at The Washington Independent, for which she covered the 2008 presidential primaries.


Yeager will write for CJR.org, via The Audit, our online business desk, and Campaign Desk, our politics and policy desk.

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Mike Hoyt was CJR's executive editor from 2001 to 2013, teaches at Columbia's Journalism School and is the editor of The Big Roundtable, a startup that is a home for narrative writing.