NEW YORK – The Associated Press today named Daisy Veerasingham as its new president and CEO, effective Jan. 1, 2022.
Veerasingham, AP’s executive vice president and chief operating officer, succeeds retiring AP President and CEO Gary Pruitt to become the 14th leader of the AP in its 175-year history.
Pruitt, 64, will remain in the role through the end of the year.
“In Daisy Veerasingham we have chosen a proven leader with a deep understanding of how AP operates and a clear vision for the future. She appreciates the crucial role AP plays in providing journalism and services that are indispensable to the news industry,” said Steven R. Swartz, chairman of the AP Board of Directors and president and CEO of Hearst. “Under Gary Pruitt, AP greatly diversified its revenue sources, substantially strengthened its financial position, and led the fight globally for journalist safety and free expression – all while AP journalism flourished, winning six Pulitzer Prizes including its first gold medal for public service. We thank Gary for a decade of exceptional leadership and know that Daisy is the right person to continue this important work.”
“I have been truly honored to work at the AP, an organization with so many talented people dedicated to advancing fact-based journalism – a mission that’s never been more important,” said Pruitt. “But after nearly 10 years as CEO, this feels like the right time to pass the baton. There is no better person to lead AP into its next chapter than Daisy, with whom I’ve worked closely over the past decade. With her experience, judgment and values, Daisy will be a terrific leader of the AP.”
“The importance of AP as an unbiased, factual news source cannot be overstated – our journalism reaches more than half the world’s population every day,” Veerasingham said. “I am thrilled to take the helm of this deeply respected news organization and work with colleagues who do extraordinary work every day in support of our mission. Gary has been a true champion of mine along the way, and I sincerely appreciate his support.”
During her 17 years at AP, Veerasingham has grown revenue, diversified the news agency’s customer base – especially internationally – and introduced new business models. She also led the transformation of AP’s video business, making it fully digital-capable and market competitive, with a focus on multichannel live video delivery.
A first-generation British national of Sri Lankan descent, Veerasingham, 51, is the first woman, first person of color and first international citizen to lead The Associated Press.
Veerasingham was appointed executive vice president and chief operating officer in February 2021, taking on responsibility for all AP departments including the company’s news, business, and technology operations.
Since 2019 Veerasingham served as senior vice president and chief revenue officer, where she directed the division comprising AP’s sales, product, marketing and customer operations worldwide. She guided AP’s global revenue operations through the pandemic and amid upheaval in the news industry.
Previously, as senior vice president for international revenue, Veerasingham was responsible for all content licensing and marketing across Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Australia, along with AP Global Media Services and AP’s video business.
Veerasingham joined AP in 2004 as sales director for AP Television News in London. She later became vice president of sales for Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Australia, overseeing revenue from clients across all formats and business units.
Prior to AP, Veerasingham was group sales and marketing director at LexisNexis and held sales and marketing roles at the Financial Times. She holds a degree in law.