A search committee appointed by the Board of Trustees for American Public Media Group has concluded “a rigorous, national search” for its next chief executive, in partnership with executive search firm Koya Partners.
The new President/CEO, the first female individual to hold the spot, begins her new duties on August 23.
She replaces an individual who has now lost his role due to high-profile sexual harassment and diversity and inclusion concerns widely reported in fall 2020.
The role will now be held by Jean Taylor.
She succeeds Jon McTaggart, who shared in September 2020 that he would to step down from the top leadership post at American Public Media after leading it for a decade.
“Our goal throughout this seven month process was to identify and select a strategic leader with a passion for public media, a commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion and a vision that will inspire our employees, listeners and donors,” said Jim Dwyer, Chair of the Search Committee and of APMG’s Board of Trustees. “We are confident Jean embodies these attributes and priorities and believe she is the right leader to take APMG forward.”
Taylor was President/CEO of Taylor Corporation from 2001 to 2010. She most recently served as chair of the Board of Star Tribune Media, where she helped guide the
organization through “significant digital transformation.”
In transitioning to her new role, Taylor has stepped down from her board position with Star Tribune Media.
American Public Media Group is the parent of Minnesota Public Radio (MPR), the Minneapolis-based giant with a spoken word focused top-rated FM in Minneapolis-St. Paul; a Classical operation offering national syndication of its programming; and a highly successful Adult Alternative operation carrying on the tradition of the original “Cities 97” in the Twin Cities.
APM is also the nation’s largest owner and operator of public radio stations (50 stations in 9 states), including Southern California Public Radio, comprised of KPCC-FM in Los Angeles and simulcast properties in Palm Springs and Oxnard-Ventura.
APM also produces and distributes national programming heard on NPR Member stations including Marketplace, Live From Here and Performance Today, and is the distributor of BBC World Service programming to all public radio stations in the U.S.
McTaggart was elected to his post in 2011. Prior to taking this role in July 2011, he was COO of APM for an eight-year period.
According to the Star Tribune, the Minneapolis daily newspaper that Star Tribune Media owns, McTaggart was paid $731,876 in fiscal 2018 for his position at APM.
The naming of Taylor brings a two-year succession plan to an end, with Taylor replacing McTaggart roughly 11 months after the plan was confirmed. That long-term initiative came on the same day staff members at MPR sent a letter to listeners and readers indicating that they had lost faith in senior leadership.
Critics of APM raised their ire at McTaggart and Mary Brainerd, board chair of American Public Media and former HealthPartners CEO, did not address the dismissal of African American air personality Garrett McQueen from Classical24 and the “very public resignation” of Marianne Combs, a reporter who accused her bosses of stalling on a story about a fellow employee facing misconduct allegations. One day later, KCMP-FM air personality Eric Malmberg was dismissed from his job.