Dow Jones & Co., publisher of The Wall Street Journal and Barron’s, will name longtime director M. Peter McPherson as chairman of the board to succeed incumbent Peter R. Kann upon his retirement.
The change of guard will take place at the New York publisher’s annual meeting on April 17. Irvine O. Hockaday Jr. and William C. Steere Jr. will also retire from the Dow Jones board on that day as part of the mandatory retirement policy for directors reaching 70 years.
These changes come less than two months after Dow Jones relaunched the Wall Street Journal as a slimmer newspaper with more color and a higher percentage of forward-looking and analytical articles. The makeover was a response to changing attitudes among readers and advertisers to news consumption and advertising.
Mr. Kann, 64, has worked at Dow Jones for more than 40 years, serving as a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist on The Wall Street Journal and as CEO of the company for 15 years. His wife, Karen Elliott House, was the CEO until she vacated that spot for the incumbent, Rich Zannino.
After becoming chairman of Dow Jones, Mr. McPherson, 66, will continue to serve as president of the National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges.
Concurrent with these moves, Dow Jones has also nominated Coca-Cola Enterprises Inc. CEO John Brock and Akamai Technologies Inc. CEO Paul Sagan to the board of directors. They are among the 16 director nominees standing for election at the Dow Jones annual meeting in New York.