Cindy Chang promoted to deputy editor, Maria L. La Ganga to city editor for the California section

Portraits of Cindy Chang and Maria L. La Ganga
Cindy Chang, left, and Maria L. La Ganga, both former assistant editors, join the department’s leadership team.
(Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times | Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

The following announcement was sent on behalf of Deputy Managing Editor Hector Becerra:

I’m happy to announce two promotions in the California section: Cindy Chang joins management as a deputy editor and Maria L. La Ganga is the new city editor, replacing yours truly.

These moves will help Metro’s excellent editing corps become even more nimble, collaborative and fast-acting. Chang and La Ganga are two of not only the sharpest editors you can find, but among the most collegial. They will work closely together to help our other fantastic editors and reporters get the resources that they need for ambitious enterprise, investigative projects and breaking news. In her position, La Ganga will also act as a liaison to other sections of the L.A. Times, fostering even more teamwork.


Chang has been an assistant city editor since early 2021. As a reporter, she covered the Los Angeles Police Department, where she made her mark with powerful narrative stories and investigations (her series of scoops with Ben Poston on police pullovers of Black and Latino motorists led the LAPD to disband the program). Before that, she covered the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and served as an immigration and ethnic communities reporter.

She previously worked at the New Orleans Times-Picayune, where she was the lead writer for a series on Louisiana prisons that won several national awards. A graduate of Yale University and NYU School of Law, she began her journalism career at the Pasadena Star-News. She was a summer intern at The Times in 2002 and is fluent in Mandarin.

La Ganga joined The Times in 1981 as an academic intern, splitting her time between the former Metro section and National Dragster, the official publication of the National Hot Rod Assn. She has served as Seattle bureau chief, San Francisco bureau chief, edited in the Business section and pitched in on six presidential elections, five for The Times and one for the Guardian. Most recently, she served as an assistant editor in Metro. La Ganga shared in two Pulitzer Prizes: for Times coverage of the 1992 Los Angeles riots and the 1994 earthquake. She is a graduate of Cal State Northridge, where she studied English literature and journalism.

La Ganga left The Times in 2015 and returned in 2018 after a brief hiatus during which she wrote for the Guardian and the Idaho Statesman. This is her third stint at The Times. It seems she cannot stay away for long.

These moves won’t be the last we make as we try to boldly tackle the challenges of our tough-as-nails industry. But along with the ingenuity that editors and reporters in Metro already show every day, I’m confident that they will make us even more prepared for what comes ahead.