Updated: Partilla Exits Clear Channel

In a surprise move, John Partilla is exiting Clear Channel Communications after only a year and a half of serving as the company’s evp and president of global media sales, a position created for the former Time Warner exec.

Partilla, who made the list of Mediaweek’s 50 most influential execs this year, brought a lot of new thinking to the radio and outdoor owner, leveraging the company’s multimedia assets to bring in new business. An “upfront” effort brought in millions of dollars of advertising commitments from some of the nation’s largest advertisers.

Now Partilla is turning back to his agency roots as chief operating officer of Dentsu Network West.

Clear Channel will not be seeking a successor to Partilla. Instead, the team that reported to Partilla will now report to Charlie Rahilly, president of national advertiser platforms.

The news of Partilla’s exit was shared with senior executives in a memo from Bob Pittman, who recently joined CC’s executive ranks in the new position of media and entertainment platforms. Pittman made a $5 million investment in the company.