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Samantha Melbourneweaver joins NPR as Managing Editor/Digital Audience Growth & Engagement

Samantha Melbourneweaver
2022 Ricardo DeAratanha / Los Angeles Times
Samantha Melbourneweaver

In a note to newsroom staff, VP and executive editor Eva Rodriguez made the following announcement:

We are thrilled to announce that Samantha Melbourneweaver will be joining us as Managing Editor/Digital Audience Growth & Engagement.

Sam comes to us after six years with the Los Angeles Times, the past three as Assistant Managing Editor, Audience. In this role, Sam managed a 40-person audience engagement team that included content strategists, newsletter writers and producers, digital editors, social media editors, SEO experts, newsroom data analysts and social content creators, among others. She launched “For Subscribers,” the Times’ subscriber-only content stream that now drives over 30% percent of newsroom digital subscriptions. She also founded “404 by LA Times” – a social content team of six creators who operate on TikTok and Instagram exclusively. Prior to the Times, Sam worked as Social Media Director and Digital News Editor for the 11 local news organizations that make up the Southern California News Group. She began her professional career as The Arizona Republic’s mobile producer – the first such producer at Gannett.

Sam will bring an abundance of smarts, strategic vision and energy to our work in expanding our offerings and growing our audiences on, the NPR app and other digital platforms. She is ambitious in her work, gutsy in taking smart risks and collaborative to her core. Sam will oversee our talented Growth, Engagement and News Apps teams and work closely with colleagues across the Content Division. Her work at local, regional and national organizations makes her an ideal partner as we continue to forge broader and deeper working bonds with Member stations.

Sam grew up in California and Washington State, earning a B.A. in journalism at Arizona State University. She is an avid seamstress, sewing most of her and her husband’s clothes. She’s an enthusiastic user of public transportation and rides her bike as often as possible. Sam is a big fan of the Los Angeles Dodgers and baseball in general, which is why her cat is named “Kitten Kershaw.” Her last name comes from taking out the hyphen of “Melbourne-Weaver.”

Sam’s first day with NPR will be June 10. She will be on parental leave through August and return from leave on a full-time basis on September 9. She will move to the Washington, D.C., area in February.

Copyright 2024 NPR

Eva Rodriguez
Eva Rodriguez is Vice President and Executive Editor at NPR. In this role, she oversees NPR's global newsgathering operation including reporters based internationally, across the country and in Washington, D.C. She serves as the senior editorial leader for all of NPR's platforms, news desks and beats, including desk editors, reporters, correspondents and associated production staff.