Margaret M. Sullivan, editor of The Buffalo News, has been elected to the Pulitzer Prize Board and will be among those choosing the winners for the 2012 Pulitzer Prizes.
Sullivan will be the first Buffalo News editor to help select the winners of the prestigious awards in journalism and the arts.
Columbia University, which oversees the Pulitzer Prizes, announced Sullivan's election Tuesday.
Sullivan served as Pulitzer Prize juror in 2001, 2002, 2005 and 2006, and in that role recommended finalists for consideration by the Pulitzer Prize Board.
She has been editor of The News since 1999, and she is the first woman to hold that post in the newspaper's 131-year history. She also has been a vice president since 2001.
Sullivan said she was thrilled and honored by her election, which comes with a three-year term, renewable to up to a maximum of three terms.
"I wasn't expecting it. I had no idea I was being considered," she said. "As a juror, I was impressed with the quality of the work I was judging. It was the best work from every organization. It's inspiring to read the best journalism out there."
"Now, it's going to be exciting to be reading the best histories, the best novels, the best poetry and plays."
Sullivan will be one of 17 voting members who will meet in November and then again next April, when they will determine the 2012 Pulitzer Prize winners.
A Lackawanna native, Sullivan joined The News staff in 1980, following an internship, and worked as a reporter, columnist, assistant city editor and assistant managing editor for features.
Prior to being named editor, she was The News' first female managing editor. She is a director of the American Society of News Editors, and under her leadership The News has been honored by the New York News Publishers Association for the last seven years with its award for Distinguished Community Service.
"She has a breadth and depth of experience in journalism and is highly regarded by her journalistic peers," said Sig Gissler, administrator of the Pulitzer Prizes and a nonvoting member of the board.
News staff members have earned three Pulitzers, considered the top honors in American journalism, since the prizes were first awarded in 1917.