Karen House

Pulitzer Prizer-winning reporter and editor, former Publisher of the Wall Street Journal and former President of the Dow Jones International

Saudi Arabia after the Arab Spring

About the Speaker

Karen Elliott House, 63, retired in March 2006 as Publisher of The Wall Street Journal, Senior Vice President of Dow Jones & Company, and a member of the company’s executive committee.  She is a broadly experienced business executive with particular expertise and experience in international affairs stemming from a distinguished career as a Pulitzer Prize winning reporter and editor.

She is currently an Adjunct Senior Fellow at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government where she is finishing a book on Saudi Arabia for Knopf.  The book will be punished in September 2012.

Ms. House served as publisher from 2002 until her retirement and in that role was responsible for all news, editorial, sales and other business functions of The Wall Street Journal and its editions around the world. 

From 1989 to 2002 Ms. House served as vice president international and then president international of Dow Jones, responsible for The Wall Street Journal’s print editions in Asia and Europe as well as for magazine and television ventures overseas.  These included representing Dow Jones on the boards of CNBC Asia and Europe, the Far Eastern Economic Review and Vedomosti, a publishing partnership in Russia.

During a 32-year career with Dow Jones and The Wall Street Journal, Ms. House also served as foreign editor, diplomatic correspondent, and energy correspondent based in Washington D.C.  Her journalism awards include a Pulitzer Prize for international reporting for coverage of the Middle East (1984), two Overseas Press Club awards for coverage of the Middle East and of Islam and the Edwin M. Hood award for Excellence in Diplomatic Reporting for a series on Saudi Arabia (1982).

In both her news and business roles, Ms. House has traveled widely over many years and has interviewed or otherwise met with world leaders including, Vladimir Putin, Shimon Peres, Benjamim Natanyahu, Saddam Hussein, Saudi King Abdullah (as deputy Crown Prince), Hosni Mubarak, Zhu Rongji, Margaret Thatcher, George Bush, Lee Kwan Yew, the late King Hussein and Yasser Arafat and many other former and current world leaders.

Ms. House has served and continues to serve on multiple non-profit boards including the Trilateral Commission, the Rand Corp., the Council on Foreign Relations, the Asia Society, the German-American Council, and Boston University.  She also is a member of the advisory board of the College of Communication at the University of Texas.

She is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin where in 1996 she was the recipient of the University’s “Distinguished Alumnus” award.  She studied and taught at Harvard University’s Institute of Politics and she holds honorary degrees from Boston University (2003) and Lafayette College (1992).  She also is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.  Ms. House is married and is the mother of four children ages 16 to 38.