The Times Mirror Shuffle
| American Journalism Review
| From AJR, October 1997|
The Times Mirror Shuffle
Mark H. Willes replaces Richard T. Schlosberg III as publisher of the
Los Angeles Times.
By Debra Puchalla
Debra Puchalla is AJR's associate editor and deputy editor of Martha
As if he needed another title, Times Mirror Chairman, President and CEO Mark H. Willes adds one anyway: publisher of the chain's flagship newspaper, the Los Angeles Times . Willes, 56, who debuted in journalism in 1995 as the company's chieftain, replaces Richard T. Schlosberg III , 53, who retires early--and abruptly--from his slot as publisher and CEO after 22 years of newspapering. Donald F. Wright , 63, a 19-year Times Mirror vet who had overseen the company's eastern papers, assumes Schlosberg's responsibilities as CEO. After lauding Wright and the management skills of Willes, who two years ago got the plum job Schlosberg wanted, the retiring publisher turned to the time-honored ritual of explaining that he wants ``to spend much more time" with his family. Since Willes left General Mills to join Times Mirror two summers ago, the megacorp shut down New York Newsday , scrapped Baltimore's Evening Sun and axed nearly 1,800 jobs, and in the process improved what had been a foundering stock price. Willes, who has expressed the view that newspapers tend to be too negative, couldn't be reached for comment on what his publishership will mean for the paper. In a statement, he said he plans to ``maintain the cherished journalistic traditions of the Times." The changing of the guard also prompts shuffling at other Times Mirror properties: The company plucks Publisher Mary E. Junck of Baltimore's Sun to fill Wright's slot, and Hartford Courant Publisher Michael Waller heads south to replace Junck. At the Courant, senior vice president and general manager Marty Petty moves up to the publisher's position.
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