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Nicola Careem is a multi-award-winning journalist with over two decades of experience and a track record of facilitating independent and trusted news in places of conflict and tension. She has covered six wars from the ground — including leading teams in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, the Palestinian territories, and Yemen. She led the BBC’s South Asia operation from New Delhi, in charge of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, and Nepal. She oversaw internationally acknowledged and agenda-setting work during an unprecedented time of turbulence, steering the organization through the conflict in Afghanistan; increased military escalations between India and Pakistan; and unparalleled attacks on journalistic freedoms. As South Asia Bureau Chief, she oversaw the BBC’s English language services from multiple bureaus across the continent, working in close collaboration with numerous language services teams, including BBC Dari, Pashto, and Urdu. She ran the BBC’s operation from Kabul as Afghanistan fell to the Taliban and the organization’s coverage of the devastating COVID-19 outbreak in India. Most recently she played a pivotal role at CNN as their Director of Coverage during the first six months of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine. 

Meet our leadership

Senior Leadership

RFE/RL is overseen by a Board of Directors, chaired by Ambassador Karen Kornbluh, and Senior Leadership led by President Stephen Capus.

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Stephen Capus

President & CEO
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Karen Johnsen

Acting CFO and Assistant Treasurer
An image of Nicola Careem, Vice President and Head of the News Division

Nicola Careem

Vice President and Head of the News Division
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Benjamin Herman

Secretary and General Counsel
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Tanya Youngberg

Assistant Secretary and Deputy General Counsel
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Christine Fetzko

Head of Operations
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Marylin Keating

Head of Human Resources
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James Landis

Head of Corporate Security
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Paul Tibbitts

Head of Strategy and Corporate Development
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Diane Zeleny

Head of External Affairs

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