Hong Kong press club brings back president of the handover year

Published (HKT): 2021.01.19 18:03

Hong Kong’s Foreign Correspondents’ Club (FCC) announced on Tuesday that Keith Richburg, director of the University of Hong Kong’s Journalism and Media Studies Centre, will take the reins of the club from Jodi Schneider, who has moved to New York.

The unanimous decision by the club’s board of governors came 24 years after Richburg last took up the same position shortly before the 1997 handover. The new president will fill out the remainder of Schneider’s term until the next elections scheduled in May.

“We must maintain our role as a fierce advocate for press freedom in the face of myriad challenges,” Richburg pledged in his inaugural message. He added that the FCC would also strive to critically navigate the pandemic as well as the city’s overall economic downturn.

A former longtime Washington Post correspondent, Richburg was the Post’s Hong Kong Bureau Chief from 1995 to 2000, before being relocated to its offices in Beijing and Shanghai.

He also thanked Schneider for her leadership over two terms as president, as she took over at “perhaps the most difficult time imaginable.”

Schneider steered the press club through the city’s protest movement in 2019 and Beijing’s imposition of a highly controversial national security law on Hong Kong last year. She has already started a new position with Bloomberg in New York.

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