Briggs named news editor for United Methodist News Service

United Methodist Communications
Office of Public Information
810 12th Avenue S.
Nashville, TN 37203
www.umcpresscenter.org

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 6, 2009

Briggs named news editor for United Methodist News Service

Nashville: David Briggs, a premier religion journalist who has been nominated eight times for a Pulitzer Prize, has been named news editor for United Methodist News Service (UMNS). UMNS is the official news agency of The United Methodist Church.

"As the most consistently honored religion writer and reporter for secular media in the past 15 years, Mr. Briggs brings to UMNS extraordinary skills in editing, relationship building, and leadership," said the Rev. Larry Hollon, chief executive of United Methodist Communications, of which UMNS is a unit.

Beginning April 20, Briggs will oversee editing of all UMNS stories and content, ensuring coverage of the major news of The United Methodist Church as well as in-depth treatment of issues and feature topics. He will also supervise a staff of multimedia reporters and help lead UMNS' expanding Web presence.

"The United Methodist News Service upholds a standard of excellence in its work and in its relationships," Briggs said. "It has been a joy to work with the news service over the past 20 years, and it is a privilege now to be part of a team leading the way into a new media age."

Briggs' experience includes nearly a decade as national writer and editor for The Associated Press, where he was responsible for all religion coverage. He worked with AP bureaus throughout the world, coordinating events such as papal trips and guiding writers and editors on religion reporting in their areas. He joins UMNS from The Cleveland Plain Dealer, where as religion writer he integrated international, national and local perspectives in stories that were also distributed on Religion News Service.

Briggs was president of the Religion Newswriters Association (RNA) from 2000 to 2002, and has been named many times by RNA among the Top 10 religion writers and Top 10 religion reporters in North America. He is also the recipient of RNA's Supple Religion Writer of the year award, as well as the Religion Communicators Council's Wilbur Award for excellence in secular religion journalism.

Briggs holds a bachelor's degree from the University of Missouri School of Journalism and a master's degree from the Yale Divinity School.

United Methodist News Service is the official news agency of The United Methodist Church. It operates with editorial autonomy and provides multimedia coverage through stories, video features, photos and audio.

Media Contact: Diane Degnan
(615) 742-5406 (office)
(615) 483-1765 (cell)
ddegnan@umcom.org

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