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Nikita Stewart just won’t leave Mayor Vince Gray alone. Stewart, the Washington Post Local reporter who dogged the mayor’s first term with a series of scoops, is moving to a different department of the paper…but she’s staying on the Gray investigation.

Stewart, who broke stories about Sulaimon Brown, fat government salaries, and the shadow campaign, is moving to the Post‘s Investigative Unit, according to a memo sent out this morning.

“In the Investigative Unit, she will continue to follow the Gray investigation while also working on longer-term projects,” writes Post assistant managing editor and Investigative Unit head Jeff Leen.

In the memo, Leen also announces another opening in the Investigative Unit. No word yet on whether Stewart’s old spot in the D.C. politics “pod” will be filled, although incoming executive editor Marty Baron signaled to the New Republic that he plans to beef up metro-area coverage.

Leen’s full memo:


We are pleased to announce that Nikita Stewart is joining the Investigative Unit.

Nikita has distinguished herself with her superlative city hall coverage of the scandals swirling around Mayor Vincent Gray and the notorious shadow campaign, which added a new term to the political lexicon unknown to even jaded denizens of the Beltway. Her strong coverage of the Fenty campaign is another example of how outstanding beat reporting can be enhanced with investigative edges.

Nikita came to The Post in 2004 and covered Prince William County government before joining the City Hall pod. She previously worked at The Newark Star-Ledger, where she covered city hall and spent much of her time chasing Mayor Sharpe James. She was a finalist for a prestigious Livingston Award for one of the first skeptical profiles of Sharpe’s successor, Cory Booker.

In the Investigative Unit, she will continue to follow the Gray investigation while also working on longer-term projects.

In addition to the hiring of Nikita, we are pleased to announce an open competition in the newsroom for another position in the Investigative Unit. The successful candidate should have proven investigative reporting ability. There is no preferred candidate.

Interested applicants should contact Jeff Leen, Peter Perl or Shirley Carswell by January 7.