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KUOW welcomes Gigi Douban as news director

May 18, 2021

Seattle, WA – After a national search, KUOW is excited to welcome journalist Gigi Douban as our next news director, starting on June 1. Douban joins KUOW after serving as news director for WBHM in Birmingham, Alabama, where she grew the news team, created a narrative podcast on the state's prison crisis, developed processes for tracking the diversity of sources, and guided national and regional journalism collaborations. Under her leadership, WBHM’s news team won numerous state, regional and national awards.

Douban will lead KUOW’s award-winning newsroom in covering the most pressing issues facing our local community and in service of our mission to create and serve a more informed public.

"We were inspired by Gigi’s ability to translate the complexities of the news business into future possibilities, but more important, she has clearly demonstrated steady and compassionate leadership. We know she is the right fit for this team in this unique time,” said Jennifer Strachan, KUOW's chief content officer.

caption: Gigi Douban will join KUOW as news director June 1.
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Gigi Douban will join KUOW as news director June 1.

Douban grew up in New York City and has spent the past two decades in Alabama. She began her journalism career in print as a beat reporter for The Birmingham News. She has reported for public radio since 2006, filing stories for WBHM, NPR, Marketplace, Studio 360, and Public Radio International’s The World. She has also written for Bloomberg News, Runner’s World, and Women’s Health magazines.

Douban was a CPB Editorial Integrity and Leadership Initiative fellow, an intensive program for public media’s most promising newsroom leaders. She has been a mentor with the Next Generation Radio Project and is on the National Journalism Advisory Board through Mercer University’s Center for Collaborative Journalism.

"I am thrilled for the opportunity to lead KUOW's stellar news team. I'm looking forward to building on the station's long-standing commitment to ambitious journalism and connecting with the communities we serve," said Douban.

Please join us in welcoming Gigi to KUOW and to Seattle!


KUOW Puget Sound Public Radio is Seattle’s NPR news station. We are an independent, nonprofit news organization that produces award-winning journalism, innovative podcasts, engaging community events and more.

Our work is about truth. We were founded with the idea that everyone should have free access to honest, fact-checked information — as well as stories that broaden conversations and deepen understanding of the world around us. We work every day in service of our mission to create and serve a more informed public, because we believe an informed public is essential to a thriving community, a vibrant democracy, and a better future.

We are one of the nation's founding NPR member stations, broadcasting from the Puget Sound region continually since 1952. KUOW acknowledges that we occupy the land which touches the shared waters of all tribes and bands of the Coast Salish people.