ESPN named Kevin Merida as editor-in-chief for The Undefeated, a site about race and culture viewed through the lens of sports.
Merida has been managing editor at The Washington Post. He will report to Marie Donoghue, executive VP for global strategy and original content at ESPN.
Merida replaced Jason Whitlock, who had headed the site and last week joined Fox Sports, where he will launch a site called j.school.
At The Washington Post, Merida served as managing editor for news, features and the Post’s Universal News Desk since February 2013. He helped lead the Post's digital transformation.
In 2006, Merida served as coordinating editor for the award-winning series “Being a Black Man.” The yearlong series was anthologized in a 2007 book he edited.
“Kevin is a remarkably accomplished journalist, editor and leader whom we have long admired and desired to join ‘The Undefeated’,” Donoghue said. “Today’s announcement represents a key step in the evolution of the site and ESPN’s commitment to this ambitious project.”
Born in Wichita, Kansas, Merida was raised in the Washington, D.C. metro area. His 10th grade class in 1973 was the first to go through busing in Maryland’s Prince George’s County school district – an experience he wrote about 25 years later in an essay, “Where That Bus Ride Took Me,” published by the Washington Post.
"I'm excited to join ESPN and to help establish The Undefeated as a destination for the most vibrant, provocative, thoughtful work on sports, race and culture in the country," Merida said. "It will become a home for innovative storytelling, new voices and the exploration of athletes and ideas by writers you'll want to read.”
Leon Carter, ESPN VP and editorial director, has been interim editor-in-chief at The Undefeated since June. He will work closely with Merida on the transition and will have additional management responsibilities within ESPN.