Tuesday, December 14, 2010

GCI has now shifted 17 newspaper CEOs this year

This morning's promotion of Leslie Hurst to publisher of The Clarion-Ledger in Jackson, Miss., is at least the 17th 14th13th turnover of a top Gannett newspaper executive this year.

This unusual turnover -- half of it, in the past month -- is among GCI's 81 U.S. community publishing newspapers, and the Tucson, Ariz., newspaper partnership. It follows recent Gannett Blog speculation that the division was due for a big reorganization. The list so far:
  1. Today. Hurst is replacing retiring Larry Whitaker. Her successor at The Daily Advertiser in Lafayette, La., hasn't been announced.
  2. Yesterday. Gabe Aguiree named general manager of the Iowa City Press-Citizen, replacing Dan Brown, whose departure wasn't explained.
  3. Dec. 10. Kim Wilson leaves Fort Collins Coloradoan; her departure isn't explained, and a replacement hasn't been announced.
  4. Dec. 6. Scott Johnson to publisher of the St. Cloud Times in Minnesota. He replaces Bill Albrecht, who was earlier named president of the Media Network of Central Ohio.
  5. Nov. 30. Charlie Nutt retires as publisher of The Daily Journal in Vineland, N.J. Advertising Director Joseph Calchi also assumes title of general manager.
  6. Michael Beck to general manager of Wisconsin's Stevens Point Journal; he replaced Mark Baldwin, whose departure wasn't explained.
  7. Nov. 18. Howard Griffin named publisher of The News Journal in Wilmington, Del., replacing retiring Curtis Riddle.
  8. Nov. 15. Mike Jameson leaves as CEO Tucson Newspapers, the joint operating agency co-owned by Gannett and Lee Enterprises; it publishes Lee's Arizona Daily Star. Jameson's replacement hasn't been announced.
  9. Oct. 20. Andrew Oppmann leaves as publisher of The Leaf-Chronicle for a university job; his permanent replacement hasn't been announced.
  10. Oct. 12. Lee Webber officially retires as publisher of The Honolulu Advertiser after its sale to a cross-town rival.
  11. Sept. 28. Linda Greiwe to publisher of the Springfield News-Leader in Missouri, replacing retiring Thomas Bookstaver.
  12. Sept. 13. Mark Winkler to publisher of The Desert Sun in Palm Springs, Calif., replacing Richard Ramhoff, whose departure was not explained.
  13. Sep. 13. James Fogler to publisher of the Burlington Free Press, replacing Brad Robertson, who was promoted to president of the new GannettLocal.
  14. May 25. Samuel Martin to publisher of the Montgomery Advertiser in Alabama. He replaces Cheryl Lindus.
  15. May 25. Lindus to general manager of The Muncie Star in Indiana. She replaces Gene Williams, named executive editor of the Courier-Post in Cherry Hill, N.J.
  16. April 7. Paul Grzella to general manager of New Jersey's Courier News in Bridgewater and the Home News Tribune in East Brunswick; he replaced Skip Hidlay, who left to become publisher of the Wichita Eagle in Kansas. 
  17. March 25. Mei-Mei Chan to publisher of The News-Press in Fort Myers, Fla., replacing Carol Hudler, who was promoted to publisher of The Tennessean at Nashville in November 2009.
Have I missed anyone? Please post your replies in the comments section, below. To e-mail confidentially, write jimhopkins[at]gmail[dot-com]; see Tipsters Anonymous Policy in the rail, upper right.


  1. What does "retiring" mean in Gannett terms? Continuing to receive ungodly amounts of money within having to face the slaves left to carry the load after massive layoffs and budget cuts?

    So many in the list above "retired." Is that a kind word for fired, but with benefits?

  2. Add Tucson to the list: JOA President Mike Jameson resigned. No replacement as of yet

  3. The publisher in Clarksville and Murfreesboro left for a university job in early November. They named "acting general managers," but no permanent replacement/replacements yet.

  4. 4:11 Doesn't Lee Enterprises control the JOA? In other words, is the publisher there really a Lee employee?

    5:04 I'll add that Clarksville position to the list.

  5. On Nov. 19, a contributor on this blog reported that Mark Baldwin, general manager in Stevens Point, was dismissed.

  6. Skip Hidlay was president and publisher of the Courier News and the Home News Tribune in New Jersey and left earlier this year to become publisher of the McClatchey-owned Wichita Eagle. Paul Grzella, editor of the two New Jersey papers was named general manager.

  7. Jim,
    The JOA in Tucson is still an equal joint agreement between Lee and Gannett. Lee doesn't control it, even though they put out the only newspaper now. For all non-news employees, Gannett writes the checks, provides benefits, and administers email and computer systems. It would be appropriate to put Mike Jameson on this list. Also, if you look at the timing, it fits in with the current CEO shuffle. When Jameson left, it was very abrupt, and there was no further communication with the employees after they simply said that he'd resigned. A Lee executive has been coming in to town occasionally to handle CEO duties on an interim basis.

  8. 1:14 I've now added Jameson to the list, plus several other suggested by readers, including that of the Stevens Point Journal.

  9. When is corporate going to combine the Poughkeepsie and Westchester publisher jobs?

    Both have smaller staffs, smaller operations and smaller circulations.

    Dual big salaries still justified?

    And by the way, what promoted corporate to retain the VP News title at Westchester? What is the need for that?

  10. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  11. Deck chairs, meet Titanic.


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