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Political and investigative reporter Matt Canham has been named The Salt Lake Tribune's senior managing editor, one of a series of changes announced Tuesday at Utah's largest daily.

In what she called a first phase of newsroom restructuring, Tribune Editor Jennifer Napier-Pearce said Canham, 36, will oversee day-to-day newsroom operations, while longtime columnist Paul Rolly will add a new role of mentoring young journalists (continuing his column as well) and political reporter Robert Gehrke will become a columnist.

Napier-Pearce and Paul Huntsman, the paper's owner and publisher, also announced imminent upgrades to The Tribune's digital offerings, as well as an across-the-board 5 percent pay raise for all newsroom staffers, the first of its kind in more than a decade.

Despite these changes — and more to come, they said— Huntsman and Napier-Pearce wrote in a staff email, "we can assure you that The Tribune will never abandon its purpose as a watchdog over Utah's institutions of power, its positioning as a platform for vivid storytelling and its reputation as a trusted voice for all Utahns."

Huntsman said the salary hikes and other investments were intended to convey his "confidence and excitement with the team" as well as the long-term nature of his approach since buying The Tribune in May.

"This is a generational investment for me," Huntsman told newsroom staffers. "The Salt Lake Tribune — and what we represent here in the community — is going to go on for generations."

The Salt Lake City-based paper has already added pages to its print publication for more Utah news, Huntsman noted, and will be extending some deadlines to include additional late-night news and sports coverage.

Napier-Pearce, whom Huntsman hired in August as top editor, praised Canham for his hard-charging dedication to journalism, his innovation and leadership. The Salt Lake City native is a University of Utah graduate, co-author of two books and has been a Tribune reporter for 14 years, seven of those as a correspondent in Washington, D.C.

Canham said he would press for the paper to be more aggressive and nimble in its news-gathering while also fostering collaboration.

Napier-Pearce said putting Canham over newsroom operations and content standards will allow other editors to step up their focus on coordinating cross-team investigative coverage and special projects.

Huntsman, who purchased the paper from the New York-based media chain Digital First Media, said he was closing in on technical upgrades to improve the paper's website,, and its delivery to mobile devices, viewed as a vital platform for reaching new readers.

Twitter: @TonySemerad