Donald Graham Named CEO of Washington Post

From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Donald E. Graham will become president and chief executive of the Washington Post Co. on May 9, the newspaper and magazine publishing company announced Thursday.

As chief executive, Graham, 45, succeeds his mother, Katharine Graham, who has been chairman and chief executive since May, 1973. Katharine Graham, 73, will remain chairman.

Alan G. Spoon will become executive vice president and chief operating officer. Spoon, 39, is president of Newsweek magazine and a vice president of the Washington Post Co.

Richard D. Simmons has been president and chief operating officer since joining the company in September, 1981. The company said he plans to teach management at the graduate school level. Simmons, 56, will remain a director of the company and president of the International Herald Tribune, in which the company holds a one-third interest.

Donald Graham has been a vice president of the company and publisher of the Post since 1979. He will continue as publisher.


Graham joined the company as a reporter in 1971 and was elected a director in 1974 after holding news and business positions at the newspaper and at Newsweek magazine.

Katharine Graham said the changes “complete a program of management succession that has been under way for several years.”

“Dick Simmons has written a large and important chapter in the history of the Washington Post Co.,” she said. “He will be greatly missed. However, after working together as a team for a decade, Dick and I believe it is time to hand over the reins to a new generation.”