Mark Whitaker Named EVP, Managing Editor of CNN Worldwide

Mark Whitaker - 2009
Jason Kempin/Getty Images

NBC News ups Antoine Sanfuentes to DC bureau chief, replacing Whitaker.

CNN has poached Mark Whitaker from NBC News. The announcement came this morning from Jim Walton, president, CNN Worldwide.

Whitaker has been named executive vp and managing editor of CNN Worldwide, leading the company’s editorial operations. He’ll report directly to Walton. 
“Our aim is to position a strong managing editor, working closely with the head of each CNN network and Web site, to generate reporting and analysis that consistently stands out, sparks conversation and captures the true meaning and relevance of the events in the news,” said Walton. “Mark is a distinguished journalist and news executive who is experienced in leading large enterprises, and I am pleased that he will help direct our long-term editorial approach and strategy.”
The position was announced last year when Walton shuffled top management, ousting CNN/US president Jon Klein and replacing him with former HLN chief Ken Jautz.
Whitaker has been the Washington bureau chief for NBC News since 2008, succeeding Tim Russert, who died suddenly of a heart attack on June 13, 2008.
“CNN plays an invaluable role in television and digital journalism as a source of non-partisan reporting and analysis, global perspective and groundbreaking documentaries,” said Whitaker. “I am excited to be joining Jim and his team in advancing that proud legacy.”
Meanwhile Antoine Sanfuentes, who served as NBC News deputy Washington bureau chief under Whitaker, has been upped to bureau chief, effective Feb. 7.
Sanfuentes will report to NBC News president Steve Capus, and his daily responsibilities will include the oversight of all bureau management, administration and editorial affairs, working closely with NBC News political director Chuck Todd. Sanfuentes will have executive oversight of Sunday public affairs program Meet the Press.
"Antoine's inclusive management style combined with his expert knowledge and experience make him the ideal leader to guide the Washington Bureau into the next phase," Capus said in a statement. "He is a true news producer through and through, with an outstanding dedication to integrity and professionalism in the field. He started his career in our DC newsroom and knows both the team and the political beat better than anyone."