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Radley Balko to Pen WaPo Op-Ed Column

Radley Balko, a well-regarded criminal justice reporter and author, will write an opinion column for The Washington Post, according to an announcement from Fred Hiatt, Editorial Page Editor, and James Downie, Digital Opinions Editor. The column will focus on criminal justice, the drug war, and civil liberties. Balko comes to WaPo from The Huffington Post, and has previously worked as a senior editor at Reason magazine, a policy analyst at the Cato Institute and an opinion columnist for He has also written a book and was named 2011 Journalist of Year by the Los Angeles Press Club.

Balko starts work at WaPo in January. Join us in congratulating him on his new job!

Read the full announcement after the jump.

Announcement from Fred Hiatt, Editorial Page Editor, and James Downie, Digital Opinions Editor:

We are delighted to announce that Radley Balko, one of the country’s top criminal justice reporters, will be joining The Washington Post’s Opinions section, where he will have his own blog about criminal justice, the drug war and civil liberties.

Radley has made headlines for his groundbreaking stories and investigations into the criminal justice system across America. His work has been cited by the U.S. Supreme Court and the Mississippi Supreme Court. Radley’s dogged reporting in the Cory Maye case helped get Maye freed from death row and later released from prison, and his investigations into the controversial methods of Mississippi pathologist Steven Hayne led to Hayne’s dismissal as the state’s top medical examiner. His first book, “Rise of the Warrior Cop: The Militarization of America’s Police Forces,” has been praised across the political spectrum, and hailed as a “must read” and a “searing exposé…of police brutality.”

He was named Journalist of the Year in 2011 by the Los Angeles Press Club, which said “Radley Balko is one of those throw-back journalists that understands the power of groundbreaking reporting and how to make a significant impact through his work. Time and time again, his stories cause readers to stop, think, and most significantly, take action.”

Radley comes to The Post from The Huffington Post, where he was a senior writer and investigative reporter. He also writes about the music and culture of Nashville, Tennessee, where he lives. A graduate of Indiana University, Radley was previously a senior editor at Reason magazine, a policy analyst at the Cato Institute and an opinion columnist for 

Radley will be joining us in January. Please join us in welcoming him to The Post.

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