The SMH promotes Bevan Shields to editor

Nine Entertainment Co’s The Sydney Morning Herald has today promoted Bevan Shields to the role of editor, effective immediately.

Shields has spent the past two years as Europe correspondent for The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age, after five years as federal editor and Canberra bureau chief for the mastheads.

SMH editor, Bevan Shields (pictured)

During his foreign posting, Shields has led coverage on issues such as the impact of the pandemic on the UK and Europe, including writing about his own experience catching COVID in April, 2020. He also recently covered the French reaction to the AUKUS submarines announcement, and it was Shields’ exchange with Emanuel Macron at the G20 in Rome which saw the French President accuse Prime Minister Scott Morrison of lying over the new national security pact.

Prior to joining the mastheads Shields was news director of Fairfax Regional Digital Media and health reporter for the Illawarra Mercury.

Shields will form part of the new leadership team at The Sydney Morning Herald, working closely with deputy editor Cosima Marriner, who was promoted earlier this year.

This year has seen the Herald celebrate its 190th birthday with the latest Total News readership figures, released by Roy Morgan, recording it is Australia’s most read news brand with a cross-platform reach of 8.6 million readers.

Marriner, the previous editor of The Sun Herald, stepped into the role of acting editor of The Sydney Morning Herald after Lisa Davies announced she would be stepping down from the role last month.

Last week, Australian journalist Melissa Stevens was appointed editor of The Sun Herald, and will start in mid-February.

Tory Maguire, executive editor of The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age, said Shields – who will start his new role in January – will bring a new energy to the 190-year-old masthead.

“Bevan Shields is an exceptionally talented journalist and editor with a deep understanding of both the venerable history of The Sydney Morning Herald and its enormous potential to build on its lead as Australia’s most-read news masthead,” said Maguire.

“The Herald’s foundation is the decades of agenda-setting, independent journalism produced by its newsroom. Bevan has proven to be an expert at journalism with impact, both as a reporter and as the leader of the metros’ federal politics bureau. He also has an instinct for audiences and what drives them to engage with, and then pay for, our journalism.

“His appointment comes at a crucial time for the masthead, as we move out of the crisis phase of the pandemic and into election season, at both a state and federal level. I can’t wait to see the effect of the fresh energy and intellect Bevan will bring to his new role.”

Shields said of his new role: “I am humbled, honoured and hungry to lead the best newsroom in Australia. I love the Herald and our newsroom full of exceptional journalists. The new year gives the Herald a huge opportunity to reset and restate who we are and what we believe in, and rededicate ourselves to journalism that informs, challenges, entertains and surprises our wonderful readers and subscribers.

“Under the leadership of myself and deputy editor Cosima Marriner, the Herald will be bold, brave and think big. The newsroom will set the standard for intelligent, fearless journalism that does justice to our extraordinary 190-year history and the special place The Sydney Morning Herald occupies in the hearts and minds of so many in Sydney and around Australia.”


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