Cable News Network (CNN) has appointed Rebecca MacKinnon the network's Beijing bureau chief and correspondent, it was announced today by Will King, vice president and managing editor of international newsgathering for CNN. MacKinnon replaces Andrea Koppel, who will move to CNN's Washington D.C. Bureau to become the network's U.S. State Department correspondent in May.
"Rebecca has been instrumental to CNN's coverage of China as a producer for the Beijing bureau, and has a tremendous wealth of knowledge and understanding of the country," says King. "She is very well suited for this position, and will bring insightful and in-depth reports to our global viewers."
Based in Beijing, MacKinnon will be responsible for covering China together with Hong Kong Bureau Chief and Correspondent Mike Chinoy. Prior to this appointment, she had been working in the network's Beijing bureau as a producer since 1992. She began reporting on-air for CNN in 1996, and broke the news of Deng Xiaoping's death to global audiences on CNN in February 1997. MacKinnon has also reported on such major events as President Jiang Zemin's visit to the United States and the building of the Three Gorges dam.
Before moving to Beijing to work for CNN, she was a Fulbright scholar in Taiwan, where she also worked as a freelance journalist for a number of publications, including Newsweek.
MacKinnon is fluent in Chinese, which she began studying at a Chinese elementary school while living in Beijing as a child. A native of Tempe, Arizona, MacKinnon graduated magna cum laude from Harvard University, where she majored in Government and studied Russian.