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The Bezos-WaPo Plot Thickens

Until recently, Jeff Bezos had been relying on Patty Stonesifer, his longtime confidant and Amazon board member, to winnow the pool down from seemingly every media executive under the sun.
Until recently, Jeff Bezos had been relying on Patty Stonesifer, his longtime confidant and Amazon board member, to winnow the pool down from seemingly every media executive under the sun. Photo: Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images
Dylan Byers
October 18, 2023

This week, Jeff Bezos began the process of conducting in-person interviews with the final two candidates for the Washington Post publisher and C.E.O. position, the last step in a months-long search for an executive leader who can reverse the fortunes of a storied news company still on the hunt for a vision—and a sustainable revenue model—in the post-Trump, post-Marty Baron era.

One of the two finalists, according to sources familiar with the matter, is Josh Steiner, the investor and Bloomberg L.P. senior adviser who I identified as a leading candidate last week. Steiner makes a whole lot of sense for a number of reasons, notably the fact that he’s a former Lazard M.D. who also grinded away for years in the salt mines of government. I have ample reason to believe that the other may be Will Lewis, the former Dow Jones C.E.O. and Wall Street Journal publisher who recently launched a Gen Z-focused media startup called The News Movement. (The Post declined to comment.) Lewis is also on the board of the Associated Press and was once a finalist for the BBC Director General position. Earlier this year, he received knighthood at the nomination of former prime minister Boris Johnson.