Akron Beacon Journal Publisher Andrea Mathewson will retire at the end of September after six years at the helm of the newspaper and Ohio.com.
A search for a successor will begin immediately.
“Upholding the tradition of the Beacon Journal was one of my top goals,” Mathewson said. “I sit in John S. Knight’s office. It has been an honor to be publisher of the Beacon Journal.
“I love Akron and I love the Beacon Journal, but it is time for a change.”
Mathewson, 54, became the Beacon Journal’s first female publisher on June 7, 2007. She stepped into the role less than a year after the Beacon Journal was bought by Black Press Group Ltd. of Canada.
Under her leadership, the publishing company has seen the same challenges faced by the newspaper industry as a whole, as advertising revenue moves from print to other media.
Despite those issues, the combined readership of the Beacon Journal and Ohio.com is among the top 25 U.S. newspapers for growth, according to the Alliance for Audited Media. Readership was 551,551 as of March 31, up 6.1 percent from the year before.
The publishing company also launched a series of community-oriented websites in 2012 through Ohio.com designed to deliver local news and advertising content to local audiences. Those websites serve Cuyahoga Falls, Jackson Township, Kent, Hudson, Wadsworth, Barberton, Stow, Copley-Fairlawn, Green and Barberton.
Mathewson serves on the boards of the University Park Alliance and Akron Tomorrow. She is a past board member of the Ohio Newspaper Association.
In 2006, Editor & Publisher, an industry trade magazine, named her one of the nation’s top production executives.