- The Washington Times - Friday, May 17, 2002

Enterprise is lifeblood for heart of newsroom

Much of the success and recognition The Washington Times has gained over the years is because of the work of the national desk. The word that best describes that desk is "enterprise."
National is the key news department for The Times, and it sets the tone for the entire newspaper. As the second daily paper in town, for now, The Times must break exclusive stories on a regular basis.
Politics is the hometown industry of Washington. The Times covers the political scene with the same intensity with which the Los Angeles Times covers Hollywood or the Wall Street Journal covers Wall Street.
Our veteran political, White House and congressional reporters Ralph Z. Hallow, Donald Lambro, Bill Sammon, Joseph Curl, Dave Boyer and Audrey Hudson among them have well-placed sources in and out of government. With many of our readers associated with the military, we pay special attention to Pentagon and national-security reporting. In no other arena have we broken more stories with international impact. Rowan Scarborough and Bill Gertz are arguably the best defense reporters in Washington.
As the alternative to The Washington Post, The Times also highlights stories about family values, faith and patriotism. Our reporters covering social issues, Julia Duin and Cheryl Wetzstein among them, consistently find important stories that the rest of the media overlook.
Stories of interest about religion, many by chief religion writer Larry Witham, often appear on the front page instead of being relegated to a "religion page" inside. Another example of The Times' commitment to covering matters of faith is a long-running feature on Page A2, the Capital Pulpit, which every Monday excerpts a local sermon and profiles the clergy member and church.
From congressional scandals to Whitewater, we have placed a premium on digging into areas not covered elsewhere. All reporters at The Times are to be investigative reporters. We expect every beat reporter, not just investigative veterans like Jerry Seper and George Archibald, to find stories unique to The Times. In a way, we have demolished as myth the idea that reporters need months to thoroughly investigate a topic. We publish quickly and follow up aggressively.
Ken Hanner, national editor

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