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Jarl Mohn Named CEO Of NPR

NPR said its board of directors has chosen Jarl Mohn to become its next president and CEO. He is currently chairman of Southern California Public Radio and has had a life-long career in media, including serving as founding president and CEO of Liberty Digital and president and CEO of E! Entertainment Television.

“We are delighted to welcome Jarl, whose background as a successful media executive and innovator makes him ideally suited to lead NPR as it continues to expand its reach and play a unique role in public service journalism and cultural programming,’’ NPR board chairman Kit Jensen, the chief operating officer of ideastream in Cleveland, Ohio, said in a release. “Jarl has a deep commitment to the public radio system, love of radio and passion for quality journalism.  He has demonstrated throughout his career a keen ability to identify media and consumer trends. He has exhibited a strong track record on diversity and fairness.”

The 62-year-old Mohn, who for years went by his radio name Lee Masters, starts at NPR in July and will succeed Paul G. Haaga Jr., who has been acting CEO since last year, the organization said.

"This is not a job for me. It is a mission. I love public radio and NPR. It is a national treasure and more important now than ever,” Mohn said in the release. “I want to make sure the staff of NPR, the Member Stations and the others who make it happen have everything they need to do their best work."

Before creating and serving as CEO at E! Entertainment Television (January 1990-December 1998) he executive vice president and general manager of MTV and VH1 (1986-1990). He began his career as a disc jockey in 1967 and was on the air on WNBC-AM in New York in the 1970s. Most recently he has divided him time between being a corporate director and advisor to a number of media companies, making direct early stage angel and seed investments in digital media/technology ventures. He and his wife Pamela created The Mohn Family Foundation in 2000.