Eugene Robinson, Washington Post columnist, joins Pulitzer Prize Board

New York, NY (Dec.2, 2010) – Eugene Robinson, Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist and associate editor at The Washington Post, has been elected to the Pulitzer Prize Board, Columbia University announced today.

A 30-year veteran of the Post, Robinson launched his twice-weekly column on the paper’s op-ed page in February 2005, and within a year it was syndicated to more than 130 newspapers – making it the fastest-growing column in the history of the Washington Post Writers Group.

In 2009, he won The Pulitzer Prize for Commentary for his columns about the 2008 presidential campaign and the election of President Barack Obama.

Robinson’s essays on politics, culture and events have helped shape the debate on issues such as the war in Iraq, the limits of presidential power and the rebuilding of the hurricane-ravaged Gulf Coast. He is a regular commentator on NBC’s “Meet the Press” and also appears frequently on MSNBC, CNN and other media outlets.

Robinson was born and raised in Orangeburg, S.C., graduating from Orangeburg High School, where he was one of a handful of black students on the previously all-white campus. He attended the University of Michigan, where during his senior year he was the first black student to be named co-editor-in-chief of the award-winning student newspaper, The Michigan Daily.

Robinson began his journalism career at the San Francisco Chronicle, covering such stories as the trial of kidnapped newspaper heiress Patricia Hearst. He joined The Washington Post in 1980 as city hall reporter, covering the first term of Marion Barry, Washington’s controversial mayor. He became an assistant city editor in 1981, and in 1984 was promoted to city editor, in charge of the paper’s coverage of the District of Columbia. During the 1987-88 academic year, Robinson was a Neiman Fellow in Journalism at Harvard University, where he studied Latin American history and politics and the Spanish language.

On his return to the paper he was named the Post’s South America correspondent, based in Buenos Aires, Argentina, a post he held from 1988 to 1992. Subsequently he was London bureau chief from 1992 to 1994, before returning to Washington to become the paper’s foreign editor.

In January 1999, Robinson became an assistant managing editor, in charge of the Style section, which during his tenure won two Pulitzer Prizes and two Missouri Lifestyle Awards as the best newspaper feature section in the nation. His appointment as associate editor and columnist became effective January 1, 2005.

In January 2008, Robinson became a political analyst and commentator for MSNBC. He appears several times a week on MSNBC shows including “Hardball” and “Countdown with Keith Olbermann.” He also was a regular contributor to the network’s coverage of the 2008 presidential campaign.

The recipient of numerous journalism awards, Robinson is on the board of the International Women's Media Foundation and is a member of the National Association of Black Journalists. He is the author of three books: Coal to Cream: A Black Man’s Journey Beyond Color to an Affirmation of Race (Free Press, 1999); Last Dance in Havana (Free Press, 2004) and Disintegration: The Splintering of Black America (Doubleday, 2010).

Robinson is married, has two sons, and lives in Arlington, Virginia.