Jefferson, whose style of criticism is more academic and willfully intellectual than her peers at the Times' drama desk, has contributed a few Off Broadway reviews over the past few months. She won a Pulitzer Prize for her book criticism in 1995. An African-American woman, she is a rarity in drama criticism, a field that for centuries has been dominated by white men. While chief drama critic Ben Brantley has been a steady presence at the Times for going on eight years, the second-string position has seen more turnover. Weber took up the job in March 2000. He replaced Peter Marks, who stayed in the job for roughly three years, beginning in fall 1996.