LONDON (AP) — The Associated Press on Wednesday named an award-winning video producer with years of experience leading coverage in Africa as its deputy news director for Africa.
Andrew Drake, who currently is a video assignment editor in London, will assume his new role next month. He will be based at the AP's Europe-Africa headquarters in London.
The deputy news director for Africa is a new position for the AP. In this role, Drake will be responsible for driving the news report in video, photos and text. He will work closely with the AP's talented team of journalists in Africa to produce compelling and distinctive spot and enterprise stories.
Drake has many years of experience covering stories and leading teams in the field for the AP. Prior to moving to London last year, Drake was the senior producer for West Africa based in Morocco. In this position, he oversaw about 30 video freelancers and staff in 27 countries and ran all aspects of video newsgathering. He was at the responsible for developing a robust stringer network in several countries and built a reputation as a collaborator with other formats on stories including the Ebola outbreak and military interventions in Mali and Central Africa.
In 2015, Drake received the prestigious Oliver S. Gramling Journalism Award, which recognizes AP staffers for professional excellence, for his ability to tell stories for all formats in often dangerous and difficult circumstances. He also was honored for his commitment to mentoring a team of stringers.
"Andy has a passion for telling stories from Africa and has deep knowledge of the continent," said Anna Johnson, the AP's Europe-Africa News Director. "His strong news judgment and creativity will help guide our coverage of Africa, and I am thrilled he is taking on this new and important role."
Previously, Drake held leadership roles for the AP in Belgium and South Asia and has traveled on assignment to many countries including Iraq, Haiti and across Europe. In addition to English, Drake speaks fluent Japanese and French.