RTÉ have announced the appointment of Richard Downes as Editor of flagship current affairs programme Prime Time.
Richard Downes has been a reporter with the Prime Time team since 2014. Prior to this he was RTÉ’s Washington Correspondent. Richard joined RTÉ in 1999 after 10 years of working as a foreign correspondent for the BBC in war zones and developing countries. During his time at RTÉ, he has also spent time presenting Morning Ireland on RTÉ Radio 1 and working as a correspondent in the Middle East and Africa. Most recently Richard reported on the US Presidential Election from Washington across RTÉ and has also stood in as a presenter on Prime Time.
Announcing the new appointment, Managing Editor, Current Affairs RTÉ David Nally said: “Richard will bring all of his considerable energy, ideas and talents to this very central role in RTE’s News and Current Affairs output. Working with Deputy Editor, Paul Tanney and a dedicated team of first rate journalists, production staff and crew, he will be responsible for harnessing those talents to ensure that Prime Time is fully attuned to the needs of today’s viewership. That means putting what our audiences want first and working every day to show them that Prime Time is on their side in cutting through spin, diversion and fake news and pointing them towards the truth in an increasingly complex world.”
Commenting on his appointment, Richard Downes said: ” I’m delighted to be taking over as editor of Ireland’s premier journalism-driven current affairs television programme. Audiences are looking for quality content from a team of highly experienced and committed reporters and producers. They have turned to us in large numbers during this pandemic and our aim is to continuously improve in order to serve them. Our commitment is to bring our best journalism for the benefit of our viewers on tv and our followers online and to innovate and change in order to stay at the cutting edge of public affairs in Ireland.”
Richard is from Raheny in Dublin and left to pursue a journalism career in London during the 1980s where he worked for the Press Association, Reuters and then the Financial Times. He is married with two children and lives on the northside of Dublin. He has written two books, one a financial textbook (Japanese Equity Warrants, 1987) and the other a memoir of life in Iraq, called, In Search of Iraq, published in Ireland and the U.S. in 2007
The appointment was made following an internal competition. Richard will commence his new role from 22 January.