Theo Balcomb, the founding producer of the New York Times daily news podcast The Daily, is leaving the show after a five-year stint. In a Twitter post, she says that when she pitched the idea of a daily news podcast in 2017 “most thought it harebrained” – but The Times didn’t and The Daily recently reached 35 months as the most downloaded show among those measured by Podtrac. “Now I’ve decided to go out on my own. I’m looking to dive into tape, hunker down with stories, edit and produce beautiful things,” said Balcomb, who was promoted to Executive Producer of the series in 2019.
Balcomb says she has returned to Maine where she once interned at Maine Public Radio. Her audio career then took her to NPR where she was the youngest-ever supervising producer for “All Things Considered.” She then joined the Times.
In a 2019 profile for the Times website, Balcomb said she looks at The Daily as a “handmade” podcast. “I think about it like a hand-stitched quilt,” she said. “Everybody on our team comes together, every single day, to embroider an episode.”
The Daily launched 10 days after President Trump’s inauguration, and Balcomb says they have been bombarded with stories to tell through the years. “The challenge is to sound new and different every day,” she said.