Ron Fournier, 42, is chief political writer for The Associated Press, the world's oldest and largest news organization. His duties include reporting stories about Congress, the White House and actions of both major parties that impact the national political landscape. He spent much of 2005 writing a book about the challenges facing political, business and religious leaders in the 21st century, and was a fellow at Harvard University's Institute of Politics in the spring 2005 semester.
In the 2004 campaign, Fournier was the top reporter on a team that included a four-person White House staff that traveled with President Bush and a two-person Democratic team that tailed Sen. John Kerry. Fournier worked with those traveling AP teams along with its money, media, polling and investigative units to produce stories about breaking news or emerging themes. On Jan. 5, 2004, Fournier was the first to report that Kerry was getting "new life'" in Iowa before public polls reflected the momentum and, on Nov. 3, 2004, he was the first to report that Kerry had called Bush to concede the election.
Fournier is in his second stint as the AP's chief political writer. He held the position for the 1998 midterms and the 2000 presidential campaign, winning the Society of Professional Journalists' 2000 Sigma Delta Chi Award for coverage of that election.
After the 2000 campaign, Fournier became chief White House correspondent, a post he held for the first half of Bush's term. He won the prestigious White House Correspondents Association Merriman Smith award for his coverage of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks from inside the evacuated mansion. While covering the Clinton White House, he twice won the Merriman Smith, including in 1997 for exclusive coverage of President Clinton's second-term Cabinet selections.
Fournier began his journalism career at the Hot Springs, Ark., Sentinel Record in 1985. He transferred to the Arkansas Democrat in 1987 and began covering then-Arkansas Gov. Bill Clinton a year later. In 1989, Fournier was hired by The AP, which transferred him to Washington, D.C., after Clinton's election in 1992.
He and his wife, Lori, are natives of Detroit who attended the University of Detroit. They are raising three children in Arlington, Virginia.
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