A changing of the guard is about to take place at Hearst Corporation. Steven Swartz, currently the company’s president and COO, is going to succeed Frank Bennack as CEO. Swartz will become only the company’s seventh CEO when he takes on the role June 1.
Bennack — who has been with Hearst for 50 years, and CEO for 28 of those — will stay on as executive vice chairman of the company’s board and chairman of its Executive Committee. Swartz has been groomed for the top spot for quite awhile, but it is still a marked changed in the company’s history. The only person who served as CEO of Hearst longer than Bennack is William Randolph Hearst.
Swartz has been COO since early 2011 and added the president role late last year. Prior to his promotion to COO, he served as senior vice president and president of Hearst Newspapers. In a statement, Bennack said Swartz was more than ready to be CEO.
“Steve has dedicated himself to our company for more than 20 years and during the past two years we have been working side-by-side to position Hearst for our next 100 years. I speak on behalf of the entire Board of Directors when I say we have the utmost confidence in Steve stepping into the role of CEO in June and leading Hearst into a strong future of successful media and information businesses and brands around the globe.”