Yahoo News hires Virginia Heffernan as national correspondent

More exciting personnel news from the purple mothership: Yahoo News has hired Virginia Heffernan, a veteran of the New York Times, as national correspondent.

Heffernan will cover "culture and politics from a digital perspective," the company said in a release. Heffernan will be based in Yahoo's New York offices, reporting to managing editor Hillary Frey. The news of Heffernan's hire was first reported by Politico.

Prior to joining Yahoo, Heffernan was an op-ed columnist for The New York Times, covering digital culture, and a regular columnist for the New York Times magazine. Before that, she was a TV writer for Slate.

The move marks yet another step in Yahoo's push to expand its original content. Earlier this week, the company announced it had hired Olivier Knox, a Congressional reporter for Agence France-Press, as its first-ever White House correspondent.

Both Knox and Heffernan will start on Feb. 13.

Last fall, Yahoo News made a number of key hires: Frey, Washington D.C. bureau chief David Chalian, head of strategy and development Guy Vidra and executive producer (elections) Steve Chaggaris. Veteran journalist Walter Shapiro also recently signed on as a contributing writer to cover the 2012 campaign.

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