MEXICO CITY -- Fernando González, a video journalist who has spent more than 30 years covering Latin America and the Caribbean, has been named to a new role as The Associated Press' news director for the Caribbean and Andes regions.
González, who has been the AP's deputy news director for Latin America and the Caribbean, based in Mexico City, since 2016, will help lead the cooperative's newsgathering operation in all formats from Havana and Caracas. The appointment was announced on Tuesday by Latin America News Director Matt Chandler,
“Fernando is uniquely placed to run these two demanding regions and in particular take on some of the AP’s most crucial stories from Venezuela and Cuba. He is tasked with elevating storytelling from the more than 30 countries in these regions, making AP content as visual as possible, providing breaking news coverage and enterprise stories with high impact.”
As deputy news director of Latin America for four years, González, 58, oversaw news coverage and production from over 50 countries and territories and more than 160 staff and freelancers in the region. He returns to Havana, Cuba, where he was AP's senior producer directing video coverage for 11 years.
The Uruguayan-born González has covered many of the region's biggest stories, including Hurricane Mitch's devastating impact on Central America and the 1996 hostage siege at the Japanese ambassador's residence in Peru. In 2007 he reported from Antarctica on the visit of Ban Ki-moon, the first U.N. secretary-general to travel there to see for himself the effects of global warming on the polar ice caps.
González also covered Fidel Castro’s death, President Barack Obama's historic visit to Cuba to cement a diplomatic thaw between Washington and Havana after decades of hostility and three papal trips to the island.