February 23, 2024

Media Decoder: Hartenstein Takes Over at Tribune

After a six-month process the Tribune Company has announced the appointment of a new president and chief executive.

On Friday, the struggling media company, home to some of the country’s biggest newspapers, announced that Eddy Hartenstein, the publisher and chief executive of The Los Angeles Times, had been appointed to the position. Mr. Hartenstein will continue to serve the Times as its chief executive and publisher and will be joined by Kathy Thomson, who was appointed to a new position of president and chief operating officer at the paper.

“The board feels strongly that it is in Tribune’s best interests to have one person providing strategic vision and day-to-day direction for the company and its employees as we prepare to emerge from the Chapter 11 process,” said Sam Zell, the chairman of the board for the Tribune Company in a statement provided by the company.

Mr. Hartenstein, the former head of the satellite television provider DirecTV, had been a member of the executive council that was created in October to oversee operations at the Tribune Company after Randy Michaels resigned as the company’s chief executive. The four-person council will be dissolved.

In an internal note to employees, Mr. Hartenstein said he looked forward to meeting the company’s employees in the coming months and “to communicating with you as frequently and as transparently as possible.”

The Tribune company filed for bankruptcy in December 2008, months after Mr. Zell purchased it for $8.2 billion. Mr. Michaels resignation came after a series of reports, including from The New York Times, revealed a hostile work environment under his leadership.

This post has been revised to reflect the following correction:

Correction: May 6, 2011

An earlier version of this post incorrectly attributed a quote from Sam Zell. It was from October, not today.

Article source: http://feeds.nytimes.com/click.phdo?i=a94615ff0625ec3b500eaef5c181c706

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