Audrey Cooper tried unsuccessfully 15 years ago to get an internship at the San Francisco Chronicle. Now she has been named editor in chief of the paper, Hearst Corp. announced.
She succeeds Ward Bushee, who retired in 2013. Cooper had been acting editor-in-chief, though her title was managing editor. The appointment is effective immediately. A search for a new managing editor to succeed Cooper will start immediately.
Cooper, 37, is the first woman to hold the position of editor in chief at the Chronicle. The appointment comes three days before the Chronicle celebrates its 150th birthday.
Cooper is a native of Kansas City, Kan., and a 1999 magna cum laude graduate of Boston University, with degrees in journalism and political science. She previously worked at the Tri-Valley Herald, the Associated Press and the Record of Stockton, where she served as metro editor.
Cooper joined the Chronicle as an assistant metro editor in 2006. She was named metro editor in 2009, assistant managing editor in 2011, deputy managing editor in 2012 and managing editor in 2013.
The story announcing her appointment said her immediate plans call for hiring investigative reporters and expanding SFChronicle.com.
Cooper’s appointment to lead the newspaper was in sharp contrast to her first attempt to join the Chronicle 15 years ago.
“I applied for an internship three years in a row,” she said. “I never even got a callback.” (Photo credit: Mike Kepka, Chronicle, 2013)