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NPR's Washington Desk Expands

In an email to staff, Washington Desk Supervising Senior Editor Beth Donovan and Deputy Editor Shirley Henry announced new additions.

All – We're happy to introduce a number of new additions to the Washington Desk.

Ayesha Rascoe will become the fourth member of NPR's White House team, joining Mara Liasson, Scott Horsley and Tamara Keith. Over more than a year of relentless news, this three-person team has delivered smart, timely, contextualized coverage of the Trump White House on the shows, the pods, and digital. Ayesha will join them on April 2, filling the fourth chair inaugurated and briefly held by Geoff Bennett.

Ayesha has covered the White House for Reuters for the past two years. In addition to the sources she's developed despite the White House revolving door, her feature sensibility  -- highlighted recently in a data-based story on Trump's time inside the WH bubble and deep reporting on his close ties to evangelicals — will make her a good fit here at NPR. A Durham, North Carolina native and Howard University alum, she's been with the wire service for a decade, getting her start there covering energy and the environment.

Brandon Carter returns to NPR also on April 2 as NPR Politics' social production assistant. An intern with the social team during the memorable summer of 2016, he'll work closely with Lori Todd and others on the network's social team. Since his internship, Brandon has run the social media accounts for The Hill where he's honed his breaking news skills. Brendon is a graduate of Western Kentucky University and hails from the former banana capital of the world, Fulton, Kentucky. Ask him about it!

Finally, in a three-way collaboration with Programming and Visuals, the indomitable Renee Klahr will spend two days a week embedded on the Washington Desk. The graphics she created for NPR Politics as an intern during the summer of 2016 gave the team a visual signature that helped the pod connect with a brand new audience. A graduate of University of Maryland Philip Merrill school of journalism, Renee will bring her aesthetic sparkle to our coverage of voting and Washington's many marble building.

Congratulations to this all-star crew. Each in their own way will lift the work of the entire desk and NPR.

Beth and Shirley

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