Gary E. Knell took over National Public Radio in the aftermath of the highly controversial Juan Williams firing and succeeded in reducing the organization’s presence in the headlines – but now he’s headed for new responsibilities elsewhere.
Knell announced he’ll be exiting NPR this fall to become President/CEO of the National Geographic Society.
“NPR is and will always be a beacon of journalistic integrity, commitment and courage,” Knell said. “Thank you for giving me the opportunity to work with you.”
NPR Chair Kit Jensen stated, “Gary and the management team have worked effectively to strengthen NPR as a world-class media organization, technological innovator and industry leader. NPR has built a firm foundation for providing the highest quality journalism and programming. We will be working closely with Gary over the next few months, and deeply appreciate the lasting impact he has made.”
Knell has been with the organization since 2011. He will work toward a smooth transition to new leadership in the time he has remaining with NPR.
RBR-TVBR observation: There is no profile low enough to keep NPR out of sight of congressmen who believe government funding for the service is a waste of money. It will probably come as a relief to not start back at square one justifying the organization’s existence every time the US budget comes up; not to mention the funding firestorms that accompany any hint of controversy.