Saturday, August 6, 2016
Allen Harold "Al" Neuharth (March 22, 1924 – April 19, 2013), American business executive was the pioneering and pugnacious founder of USA Today. He was also the founder of The Freedom Forum and its Newsium.
When Neuharth was two, his father died after a farm accident. He helped support the family with a procession of odd jobs; newspaper carrier, composing-room gofer, and part-time helper in a butcher shop and a drugstore.
He joined the Miami Herald as a reporter, worked his way up through the Knight-Ridder newspaper chain.
In 1963 he joined Gannet publishing as general manager and rose to president in 1970 and chief executive in 1973. In the latter post he adopted a business model that fostered the purchase of newspaper in small-to-medium towns and thus created a chain of monopolics.
Many of USA Today’s innovations were directives from Neuharth, dubbed the ‘Chief Architect’ by the project planners.
Allen Harold "Al" Neuharth