John Pomfret

Editor, Outlook
Washington Post
Washington, DC

Raised in New York City and educated at Stanford and Nanjing universities, John Pomfret is an award-winning journalist with The Washington Post.

He has been a foreign correspondent for 15 years, covering big wars and small in Afghanistan, Bosnia, Congo, Sri Lanka, Iraq, southwestern Turkey and northeastern Iran.

Pomfret has spent seven years covering China – one in the late 1980s during the Tiananmen Square protests and then from 1998 until the end of 2003 as the bureau chief for The Washington Post in Beijing.

Returning to the United States in 2004, Pomfret was the paper’s West Coast bureau chief for two years before being appointed the editor of its Outlook section, the Post’s weekly commentary section

Pomfret speaks, reads and writes Mandarin, having spent two years at Nanjing University in the early 1980s as part of one of the first groups of American students to study in China. He has been a bartender in Paris and practiced Judo in Japan.

In 2003, Pomfret was awarded the Osborne Elliot Award for the best coverage of Asia by the Asia Society.In 2007, Pomfret was awarded the Shorenstein Award from Havard and Stanford universities for his lifetime coverage of Asia.

He is married to a Chinese entrepreneur and has two children. “Chinese Lessons: Five Classmates and the Story of the New China” is his first book.

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