A salary is still being negotiated for the publisher, who will work for the city schools.
By JoANNE VIVIANO
VINDICATOR EDUCATION WRITER
YOUNGSTOWN -- The Buckeye Review will remain part of the Mahoning Valley's journalistic community, even as its publisher takes a position at the public relations helm of the Youngstown City Schools.
"I will not be involved in the active day-to-day operations," said Publisher Mike McNair, who has for eight years headed the publication that covers the area's black community. "But I have not disowned it. I am still publisher. ... The future of the Review is bright."
McNair said his wife Linda, co-publisher, will handle all day-to-day activities at the Buckeye Review when he begins his new position Monday.
The Youngstown City school board appointed McNair supervisor of community relations and public information in December under a contract expiring July 31. His salary is still being negotiated, Superintendent Benjamin L. McGee said.
McNair replaces Chuck Zillo, who retired in June.
McGee said McNair will not write for the Review, as he has done, to avoid any conflict of interest and to devote time to the new position.
Board President Lock P. Beachum Sr. said an attorney is being consulted to ensure that there is no conflict with McNair's taking the position while maintaining his publisher status. He said the issue is that McNair give "full-time attention" to his new position.
McGee said there were about 24 applicants for the position, both from within the district and outside. A screening committee narrowed down choices and awarded interviews to several before McNair was selected.
He said McNair brings a favorable background and experience in journalis to the position.
His volunteerism in the district, working with pupils, will also give him an advantage, McGee said.
McNair has also had political aspirations in Youngstown. In 2001, he sought to run for mayor but was disqualified when a petition did not contain enough signatures.
In May he lost a bid to gain the Democratic nomination for a Mahoning County commissioner's seat. It was the third time McNair had sought a seat, having unsuccessfully tried to be appointed to a vacancy in 1999 and running unsuccessfully in 2000.He holds a master's degree in management from Webster University in St. Louis, Mo., and a bachelor's degree in business administration from Fitchburg State University in Fitchburg, Mass.
He has served on boards for the Youngstown Area Urban League, the Youngstown/Warren Regional Chamber, the Salvation Army and the Boys and Girls Club, and is a former Army captain and management analyst at the Air Defense Center in Fort Bliss, Texas.