Arnold Schwarzenegger has found lots of ways to keep busy since leaving the governor’s office, from starring in action movies to lending his name to a policy institute at the University of Southern California.
Now he’s going to be returning to a role that stirred controversy during his stint in Sacramento -- Schwarzenegger will once again serve as executive editor at Muscle & Fitness and Flex magazines.
The move was announced on Friday by American Media Inc., which owns the magazines.
Schwarzenegger, who was named Mr. Olympia seven times, first took the job shortly after winning the 2003 recall election. When details of the arrangement were revealed in 2005, it was criticized as a conflict of interest and he quit the job.
Schwarzenegger was receiving at least $1 million a year from a magazine dependent on advertising for dietary supplements while also making decisions as governor about how to regulate the industry.
At the time, the leader of the Center for Responsive Politics in Washington called it “one of the most egregious apparent conflicts of interest that I have seen”
In a statement, Schwarzenegger said he was excited to return to his former gig.
“It was in these magazines that I found the spark that inspired me to start lifting weights, and eventually move to America and realize my dreams, and I’m proud to return as executive editor,” he said.
Schwarzenegger, who has appeared on the magazines’ covers more than 60 times, will contribute columns and creative input.
No word on whether the former governor will be writing his own column. An editor told The Times in 2005 that Schwarzenegger would discuss topics with editors who later wrote drafts for him to approve.