Tamara Lush named AP's Tampa correspondent

Tamara Lush, who has covered such assignments as the Haiti earthquake and the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, has been appointed Tampa Bay bureau correspondent by The Associated Press.

The appointment was announced Wednesday by South Regional Editor Lisa Marie Pane and Florida News Editor Terry Spencer. She succeeds Mitch Stacy, who transferred to the AP's Ohio operation.

"Tamara is a versatile journalist, a thoughtful reporter and writer who captures stories that resonate with readers and viewers," Pane said. "She represents today's best in journalism: someone who is creative and can produce across a variety of formats, and always strives to tell our stories as broadly as possible."

Lush, 41, joined AP in its Miami bureau in 2008, transferring to Tampa in 2009. During that time, she's been involved in covering such stories as extramarital affair and scandal involving former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford , the Haiti earthquake and the Gulf oil spill. She was the lead writer for AP's project commemorating the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, spending the summer of 2011 traveling the country reporting on the tragedy's lingering impact.

Before joining AP, Lush worked at the Miami New Times. She was also a freelancer for People Magazine and several other publications. Between 2000 and 2006, Tamara was a staff writer for The St. Petersburg Times, covering crime in two central Florida counties before she became a general assignment writer based in Miami covering key stories across the state. Lush previously worked at The Burlington Free Press in Vermont, where she was suburban editor. Before joining newspapers, Tamara worked in radio news.

Florida Chief of Bureau Jim Baltzelle called Lush a "dynamic journalist."

"We are so fortunate, as readers, to have her talents in Florida," he said.

Lush graduated from Emerson College in Boston in 1993 with a degree in mass communications.