Steve Peoples, a veteran journalist who has covered politics in Washington and the Northeast, has been named to the new position of New England political writer for The Associated Press.
The appointment was announced Thursday by Karen Testa, the cooperative's regional editor for the eastern U.S.
"Steve is a New England native whose local knowledge and Washington insights make him the perfect addition to our team covering the most competitive political stories from the region," Testa said.
Peoples joins the AP from the Capitol Hill newspaper Roll Call, where he has been covering presidential and congressional politics. He will set his immediate attention to AP's coverage of the 2012 presidential field and the first-in-the-nation primary in New Hampshire.
"The 2012 presidential race is a crucial mission for the AP," said Mike Oreskes, AP's senior managing editor for U.S. news. "We are committed to coverage that combines the best of our sophisticated national reporting staff and our deeply informed local reporting. We are positioning first-rate reporters at crucial spots around the country to give us this insightful coverage. Certainly few spots are more crucial than New England, with the New Hampshire primary coming fast."
Before joining Roll Call a year ago, Peoples was a top political writer at The Providence Journal, having worked his way up from coverage of local government. While there, he covered key political races in neighboring states, including the election of Sen. Scott Brown and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney's 2008 bid for president.
"At a time when other news organizations are cutting back, The Associated Press is strategically reinforcing our staff in the run-up to 2012," said William J. Kole, AP's bureau chief for New England. "Steve's appointment is a key part of our commitment to break news out of the campaigns."
Peoples, 33, is a native of Moultonboro, N.H., and a graduate of the University of Southern Maine. Before moving to the Journal in 2003, he was a reporter at Foster's Daily Democrat in New Hampshire. He also has a master's degree in public affairs from Brown University.