Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
After the war, Neuharth went to the University of South Dakota where he edited the school newspaper. After he graduated, he and fellow USD alum Bill Porter founded SoDak Sports, a weekly newspaper devoted to covering the sports scene in South Dakota. Despite its initial popularity, SoDak went bankrupt in a year's time.
After his failure, Al went to the Miami Herald, where he made his way up to assistant managing editor. Then, the Knight newspaper chain (now part of Knight-Ridder), which owned the Herald, sent Al to its Detroit Free Press, which was fighting a uphill battle with the Detroit News, which Newharth would later buy while at Gannett.
After Al realized that he could go no further in the Knight organization due to the Knight family's complete control, Neuharth accepted Gannett head Paul Miller's offer to head to Gannett's HQ in Rochester, first to run its paper there: then to run the boardroom under Miller, who he eventually succeded. Al helped to build Gannett into the largest newspaper company in the U.S. He also founded USA Today, the most widely read newspaper in the U.S. Neuharth retired from Gannett in 1989, at the age of 65.
On December 22, 2004, Neuharth sparked controversy when he called in his column for American troops to be brought home from the "ill-advised adventures" in Iraq, which he compared to the immorality of the Vietnam war. Neuharth also stated that if he were eligible for service in Iraq, he would do everything possible to avoid it.
- Newharth, Al. Confessions of an S.O.B. Doubleday, 1989
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