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Ezra Klein and Lauren Williams are leaving Vox

Ezra Klein, co-founder and editor-at-large of, the political news website owned by Vox Media, and Lauren Williams, editor-in-chief and senior vice president of, are leaving the company, executives tell Axios.

Why it matters: They are the latest examples of high-profile media executives to leave management roles in pursuit of more hands-on, creative careers.

  • Last week, one of's other co-founders, Matthew Yglesias, left Vox to start his own newsletter. He told Axios in an interview last week that he will continue to host his Vox Media podcast, "The Weeds."
  • Glenn Greenwald, a columnist at The Intercept, last month quit the publication he co-founded after seven years, citing efforts by his editors to "censor" articles critical of President-elect Joe Biden.

The state of play: Klein is departing the website to join another venture, to be announced later Friday.

  • His Vox podcast, "The Ezra Klein Show," will go away, but Vox plans to launch a new interview show next year. All of the production staff that worked on Klein's podcast will remain with the company.
  • Williams is launching a new nonprofit startup called "Capital B," focused on creating a news outlet for civic journalism tailored to Black communities.
  • Vox Media publisher Melissa Bell tells Axios, "I couldn’t be more excited for Lauren's ambitious next step. She's identified an urgently necessary publication, and we look forward to partnering with her new outlet."

The company has begun a search for two new leaders to fill Williams' role — a new business-focused SVP and a new editor-in-chief.

  • It will be filling at least ten new roles in the months to come, including senior editors that will report to the new editor-in-chief. It will continue searching for a managing editor of operations, a job that's been posted for a few weeks.

The changes mark a new era for Vox, the news brand, and Vox Media, the publishing company that owns it, as well as a dozen other brands across topics like food, politics, gaming, tech, and sports.

  • "We have had a very long run of a founding team at Vox — almost seven years," says Bell, another Vox co-founder. "While it's great to have high retention rates, I do feel excited about this new transition period. It allows us to take a hard look at what Vox will be in the years ahead."

Flashback: Vox was launched in 2014 by Bell, Klein and Yglesias. The site got its start with wonky, yet relatable political analysis that resembled the early days of web blogging. Its YouTube video explainers helped put it on the map for millions of more people outside of the political sphere.

  • Today, Bell says Vox has received "tens of thousands" of individual contributions from readers who want to support the brand. The Vox franchise hosts several hit podcasts, including Klein's and Yglesias' — as well as a show on Netflix, called "Explained," and several YouTube series.

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