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Craig Dubow resigns as Gannett CEO; Gracia Martore to take post

October 6, 2011 |  3:46 pm

Newspaper and television giant Gannett Co. is restructuring its executive ranks in the wake of the sudden resignation of its chairman and chief executive because of health issues.

Craig Dubow, 56, who has been with Gannett for 30 years, resigned Thursday due to disability, the company said. Dubow had been on a leave of absence since Sept. 15 to deal with a recurring back issue. He previously took a three-month leave of absence in 2009 after having back and hip surgery. Gannett owns 82 newspapers including USA Today and 23 television stations in major markets across the country.

Succeeding Dubow as chairman is Gannett board member Marjorie Magner, who will hold the title in a non-executive capacity. Magner is a managing partner of the private equity firm Brysam Global Partners.

Gracia Martore, 60, Gannett's president and chief operating officer, will take Dubow's place as president and CEO of the parent company of 82 newspapers including USA Today and 23 television stations in major markets across the country.

A broadcasting veteran, Dubow first joined Gannet as a salesman at the company's Denver station. He rose to head of the TV unit in 2000 and in 2005 became chief executive of the entire company.

"The decision to step down was difficult, but I must now focus on my health and my family," Dubow said in a statement.

Whereas Dubow was well-versed in television, Martore's background is primarily in finance. She joined Gannett in 1985 as assistant treasurer and rose to chief financial officer before becoming president and chief operating officer in 2010.

In an interview, Martore said the company will continue to focus on its digital business and on strengthening its relationships with the communities it serves.

"That deep local reach is rare in media and it is something we're going to continue to leverage," she said.

 -- Joe Flint

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