Raina Kelley Replaces Kevin Merida as Top Editor of ESPN’s The Undefeated

Raina Kelley has been promoted to vice president and editor-in-chief of ESPN-owned sports and culture website The Undefeated, ESPN announced Monday.

Kelley, who served as managing director of The Undefeated beginning in November 2015, succeeds Kevin Merida and will report to EPSN senior vice president of content business development and innovation, Mark Walker.

“Raina is a committed, collaborative and creative presence who has been part of the visionary leadership for this platform from the star. We know The Undefeated will continue to thrive with Raina in this role,” ESPN’s Jimmy Pitaro said in a statement.

Kelley also leavs ESPN’s Black History Always content initiative, highlighting “the contributions of African Americans through long-and shortform storytelling.”

Kelley’s appointment comes the same day Merida was announced as the new executive editor of the Los Angeles times.

“Kevin has been an outstanding leader, an amazing teacher and mentor to our team,” Kelley said in a statement. “I assume this responsibility knowing he has left behind a brilliant team of creative minds at The U that will continue this vision well into the future.”

Prior to The Undefeated, Kelley was deputy editor at ESPN the Magazine, having joined the company in 2011. Before that she wrote for Newsweek from 2003-2011.

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