Par Ridder joins Clear Channel
December 16, 2010
The former publisher of the San Luis Obispo County Tribune, who later found himself embroiled in controversy in St. Paul, is joining media conglomerate Clear Channel. [Business Wire]
Ridder will serve as Branch President of Clear Channel’s outdoor billboard division and be responsible for more than 11,000 outdoor displays in Chicago.
Ridder moved to San Luis Obispo in 2000 to serve as publisher of the Tribune, a newspaper then owned by the Knight-Ridder Company out of San Jose.
He was quickly promoted and offered the plum assignment of taking over the Knight-Ridder newspaper in St. Paul, Minn. Controversy later erupted when Ridder abruptly bolted from the St. Paul Pioneer Press for its arch-rival the Minneapolis Tribune. Ridder was accused of taking confidential Pioneer Press financial documents with him and a massive lawsuit resulted.
The Minneapolis Tribune was rumored to spend as much as $11.5 million defending Ridder in court. Ridder was forced to step down from the Minneapolis Tribune in 2007. The new position with Clear Channel will be his first job since that incident.
Clear Channel, itself no stranger to controversy, owned a cluster of radio stations in San Luis Obispo and Santa Maria before selling them to El Dorado Broadcasters in 2007.