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Stanford Official Is Named President of Freedom Newspapers

January 22, 1992|GREGORY CROUCH

IRVINE — Stanford University's provost will become president and chief executive of the Orange County Register's parent corporation in mid-April.

Freedom Newspapers Inc. said its board of directors has approved the appointment of James N. Rosse to replace President and Chief Executive D.R. (Bob) Segal, who plans to retire April 15.

Rosse, 60, a former economics professor, is an expert on media economics. He is frequently quoted in articles addressing problems in the journalism industry, including the merits of merging competing newspapers.

"He knows what makes (newspapers) tick, and how and why, and he knows a great deal about marketing," Segal said. "He has worked for virtually all of the big newspaper companies at one time or another."

Besides the Register, Freedom Newspapers owns the Anaheim Bulletin, the La Habra-Brea Daily Star-Progress, 24 other dailies and 16 weeklies. The company also owns five television stations and Orange County NewsChannel, a 24-hour all-news cable channel.

Freedom Newspapers has a combined daily and Sunday circulation of just under 1 million. That does not include weekly newspapers. The privately held company does not disclose revenue.

Before joining Stanford in 1965, Rosse worked on newspapers in Minnesota and Nebraska, Segal said. He wrote his Ph.D. dissertation at the University of Minnesota on newspaper economics, according to Segal.

Rosse could not be reached for comment.

Freedom, with about 6,500 employees, espouses a Libertarian philosophy that advocates minimal government. Segal said Rosse agrees with the company's bent.

"Some of the major principles which we believe are the same as Jim's beliefs," Segal said. "We've known him for some time and know generally how he thinks about things. . . . I assume we largely agree on basics."

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