Greg Burton is Vice President of News & Executive Editor of The Arizona Republic and Regional Editor for USA TODAY in the West, leading newsrooms in Washington, Oregon, Montana, Nevada, Utah, California and Arizona. He heads a national coalition of journalists covering climate change and is the executive sponsor of Gannett’s Sustainability Employee Resource Group.
He began his career at a small newspaper in Idaho writing about the environment during a period of upheaval over logging and mining, spotted owl protections and wilderness designations for old-growth forests.
In 1997, he joined the Salt Lake Tribune. As a reporter and editor in Utah, he exposed the practice of forced incest and child abuse within polygamous clans and led projects on the reintroduction of wolves to Yellowstone National Park and the battle over nuclear waste storage at Yucca Mountain. Before the 2002 Winter Olympics, he uncovered secret gifts from bid leaders in Salt Lake City to the International Olympic Committee and helped chronicle the emergence of Mitt Romney as a national figure in the aftermath of the bribery scandal.
He moved to Delaware in 2004 to work for The News Journal, where he led investigations into the state’s prisons and mental health treatment system. That work prompted federal probes and sanctions against Delaware’s governor by the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Justice Department, improving conditions for thousands in care facilities and prisons.
After leading The News Journal’s Emmy-winning coverage of Vice President Joe Biden, he moved to Palm Springs as executive editor of The Desert Sun. In California, he led a project on groundwater depletion that won Stanford University’s Knight-Risser Prize for Western Environmental Journalism. At The Desert Sun, he formed a reporting team that examined the catastrophic decline of the Salton Sea, habitat loss in Joshua Tree National Park due to climate change and pollution along the U.S.-Mexico border.
In 2018, he moved to Phoenix as executive editor of The Arizona Republic. Burton’s newsroom is a two-time Pulitzer finalist, Oakes environmental award finalist, Goldsmith prize winner and Pulitzer Prize winner for The Wall, a landmark multimedia project that explores the border and President Trump’s promise to build “a great wall.”
He has led or edited projects awarded journalism’s highest honors, including the Pulitzer Prize, Goldsmith Prize for Investigative Reporting, Scripps Howard Award for Distinguished Service to the First Amendment, Gerald R. Loeb Award, Society of Professional Journalists’ New American Award, George Polk Award, IRE’s Philip Meyer Award, multiple Emmy awards and two Edward R. Murrow awards for Digital Storytelling and Excellence in Innovation.
He serves on the Endowment Board for the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University; is on the Advisory Board to the School of Journalism and Mass Media at the University of Idaho; and is on the Council of Resilience Leaders, Knowledge Exchange for Resilience at Arizona State University. For two years, he served as a nominating juror for the Pulitzer Prizes at Columbia University.