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Pruitt Jumps to Associated Press

McClatchy chairman, president and CEO

The Associated Press has named Gary Pruitt as its new president and CEO, effective in July, to replace Tom Curley, who’s retiring as the 13th leader of the AP in its 166-year history.

Pruitt, 54, is the current chairman, president and CEO of The McClatchy Co., the third-largest newspaper company in the United States, whose publications include the Miami Herald and the Charlotte Observer. He has worked for McClatchy for 28 years.

In a 2003 article in the American Journalism Review, writer Susan Paterno described Pruitt’s style as that of “always positive, always on message, always looking as though he stepped from the pages of a Ralph Lauren catalog, running a company as trim and fit and athletic as he is.”

A graduate of the University of Florida and the University of California, Berkeley, and former chair of the Newspaper Association of America, Pruitt is not exactly new to the AP. He served on its board of directors for nine years, including a period as vice chairman.