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Former Media General exec is finalist for USF College of Business dean post

TAMPA — A former top executive at Media General, which owns the Tampa Tribune, is now on the short list to lead the University of South Florida's business school.

John Schueler was president of the company that oversees Media General's Tampa operations, Florida Communications Group, since 2005. He was removed from that role last month, along with a couple of other executives, amid a restructuring. Media General said Schueler would be transferred to an unspecified job in the company's Richmond, Va., headquarters. That announcement preceded 165 layoffs at the Tribune this week.

Now the St. Petersburg Times has learned Schueler is one of three finalists to be dean of USF's College of Business.

The other two candidates come from academic backgrounds: the front-runner, Srinivas Reddy, is associate dean for the Lee Kong Chian School of Business and marketing director at Singapore Management University. And Tomas Hult is the director of the International Business Center at Michigan State University.

Before his stint at Media General, Schueler was CEO of the Los Angeles and Bay Area group of Media News Group, president and publisher of McClatchy Newspapers' Star Tribune in Minneapolis, and president and CEO of Freedom Newspapers' Orange County Register, his resume shows.

The search committee's chairman, USF College of Arts and Sciences dean Eric Eisenberg, said the university specifically sought out candidates from both academic and professional realms.

They started with more than 50 people, narrowed that down to 10 who were interviewed, and finally came up with these three.

"We cast a net very, very broadly," Eisenberg said.

As for Schueler: "We got nothing but positives about him," Eisenberg said.

Schueler had the endorsement of many community leaders, the search committee chairman said.

Schueler was not immediately available for comment.

Eisenberg said he hopes to have a decision made by the end of January.

This is one of four new dean searches at USF, and the last one to be filled. James Moy, former provost of the Nova Scotia College of Art & Design, was just named dean of the College of the Arts; Julie Serovich, who was chair of the department of human development and family science at Ohio State University, was named dean of the College of Behavioral and Community Sciences; and Judy Ashcroft, who was dean of continuing and innovative education at the University of Texas in Austin, is now the founding dean of USF's University College.

Kim Wilmath can be reached at kwilmath@tampabay.com or (813) 226-3337.

Former Media General exec is finalist for USF College of Business dean post 12/16/11 [Last modified: Friday, December 16, 2011 10:39pm]

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