Magazine article Editor & Publisher

Primis Quits N.Y. Times Co

Magazine article Editor & Publisher

Primis Quits N.Y. Times Co

Article excerpt

NEW YORK TIMES Co. president and COO Lance R. Primis unexpectedly-resigned from the company-last week, putting an end to speculation that he would be the first outsider to someday run the family-owned empire.

Times Co. chairman Arthur O. "Punch" Sulzberger announced Primis' departure on Friday, Sept.20. In a statement, Sulzberger said,"Lance wanted to be free to seek a more certain opportunity to run an enterprise and thought it would be appropriate to relinquish his responsibilities."

Primis' resignation was prompted in part by Sulzberger's refusal to assure him of someday taking over the company, according to the Times. Primis will remain at the company as a consultant until the end of the year. He was named president four years ago.

Russell T. Lewis, president and general manager of the New York Times since 1993, was named to replace Primis.

Primis, 50, started at the company in 1969 selling classified ads. Recently, he made no effort to hide his ambition to someday succeed Sulzberger as chairman of the Times Co. He would have been the first non-family member to run the 100-year-old company

The Wall Street Journal reported that Primis did not get along well with editorial managers at the company, and he clashed with Sulzberger over personal style. He also did not have a close relationship with Arthur Sulzberger Jr., the 44-year-old publisher of the Times.

With Primis' resignation, Sulzberger Jr. is the most likely successor to his father, who is 70. …

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