Board of Directors

Dennis J. FitzSimons

Dennis J. FitzSimons, Chairman

Dennis J. FitzSimons is Chairman of the Board of the Robert R. McCormick Foundation, a charitable organization with assets of more than $1.4 billion.  The Foundation focuses its charitable giving on early childhood education, journalism, First Amendment rights and citizenship, seeing its mission as advancing the ideals of a free, democratic society.
FitzSimons served as Chairman/CEO of Tribune Company until December 2007, stepping down upon completing the sale of the company to an Employee Stock Ownership Plan and Sam Zell.  The transaction brought to a close a 25-year career at the company.  FitzSimons’ first 17 years were spent in the broadcast division where he rose through the ranks of the television group, joining the company as sales manager of WGN-TV and holding positions as general manager of WGNO-TV, New Orleans; general manager of WGN-TV, Chicago; and then president/CEO, Tribune Broadcasting.  FitzSimons was appointed Tribune Company executive vice president in January 2000, with responsibility for the company’s publishing, broadcasting and digital media groups, as well as the Chicago Cubs.  He was elected to Tribune’s board of directors in 2000 and named president and chief operating officer of Tribune in July 2001.  FitzSimons was named CEO in January 2003 and became chairman a year later.
Prior to Tribune, FitzSimons held a number of sales and marketing positions at Viacom; TeleRep, Inc., a division of Cox Broadcasting; and Blair Television.  He started his media career at Grey Advertising in New York. FitzSimons chaired the Media Security and Reliability Council for the FCC from 2002 to 2004, and was a director of The Associated Press from 2004 to 2007.  He is a trustee of Northwestern University, a member of the Medill Board of Advisors, serves as a director of the Museum of Science and Industry and the Big Shoulders Fund, each in Chicago.  He is vice president of Off The Street Club, a boys and girls club on Chicago’s tough West Side. He is a longtime member of the Commercial Club of Chicago and a Business Council member from 2003-2012.  FitzSimons was honored as U.S. Broadcaster of the Year in 2003, received the American Horizon Award from the Media Institute in 2003, and the Good Samaritan Award from the National Association of Broadcasters Education Foundation in 2005.
Since June 2009, FitzSimons has served as a director of Media General, a publicly-traded Richmond, Virginia-based diversified media company with interests in television and digital media.  He also will serve as a director of Time Inc. on completion of its spin-off from Time Warner in June 2014.
A native of New York, FitzSimons holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from Fordham University.  He and his wife, Ann have three adult children, Matthew, Christine and Jeanne, and reside in Chicago, Illinois.

John W. Madigan

John W. Madigan is the retired chairman and CEO of Tribune Company, a major media company. He was elected chief executive officer of Tribune in May 1995. He also served as chairman from 1996 through December 2003. He was elected to the Tribune board of directors in 1975, the same year he joined the company as vice president/chief financial officer.

Madigan began his business career as a financial analyst with Duff & Phelps Inc. in Chicago and later became a manager at Arthur Andersen & Co. He was an investment banker with both Paine, Webber, Jackson & Curtis and Salomon Brothers.

Madigan is a director and former chairman of the Robert R. McCormick Foundation, a director of Gilead Sciences, formerly an adviser to Madison Dearborn Partners and a director and past chairman of The Chicago Council on Global Affairs
. He serves as a trustee of Northwestern University and Rush University Medical Center. He also is a member of (and past chairman) of The Commercial Club of Chicago and a director of New Schools for Chicago (charter schools).

A Chicago-area native, Madigan holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in business administration from the University of Michigan.

Ruthellyn Musil

Ruthellyn Musil retired as Tribune Company's senior vice president/corporate relations in 2007. As the company's senior communications executive, Musil served as spokesperson for the company to the investor and financial communities. She also directed Tribune's external and internal communications activities.

During a 36-year career with the company, Musil also held a number of positions at the Chicago Tribune, including public relations manager and director of employee communications. She joined the company in 1971, working in the newspaper's marketing department.

She is a member of the board of trustees of Loyola University Chicago, and serves on its executive committee. In addition, she is a member of the board and grants committee of the Vandehey Foundation, a supporting organization of the Community Foundation of the Fox Valley Region, headquartered in Appleton, Wisconsin.

A Chicago area native, Musil holds a BA in English from Loyola University Chicago and received an MBA from Northwestern University's Kellogg Graduate School of Management.

Scott C. Smith

Scott Smith completed his 30-year career as a Tribune Company executive in 2008. From 2004 to 2008, he served as president of Tribune Publishing, overseeing the company’s newspapers and interactive businesses. From 1997 to 2004, and again from 2006 to 2008, he was president and publisher of the Chicago Tribune, leading the newspaper plus related Chicagoland print and digital businesses. Previously, he was publisher of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, Tribune’s senior vice president/development, and chief financial officer, and held additional positions at Tribune beginning in 1977. He started his career at Northern Trust in 1973.

Smith is currently active with a number of leading Chicago area not-for-profit organizations, serving on the boards of the Robert R. McCormick Foundation, National Louis University, Chicago Public Education Fund, University of Chicago Charter School, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Northwestern Memorial Foundation, Mather Lifeways, and Kellogg School of Management.

A native of the Chicago area, Smith holds a bachelor’s degree from Yale University and a master’s degree from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management.

Don Wycliff

Don Wycliff is Distinguished Journalist in Residence at the School of Communication at Loyola University Chicago. Prior to his current post he spent 35 years in the newspaper industry as a reporter, editor, editorial writer and columnist. His career included almost ten years as editorial page editor of the Chicago Tribune, five years as the Tribune’s public editor (ombudsman) and five years as a member of the editorial board of The New York Times. During his tenure as the Chicago Tribune’s editorial page editor, the paper won one Pulitzer Prize for editorial writing and was a finalist for a second. The paper also won two Distinguished Writing Awards in editorial writing from the American Society of Newspaper Editors (ASNE). Wycliff was a Pulitzer finalist in 1996 and the winner of the ASNE editorial writing award in 1997.

Wycliff was a member of the first class of Ethics Fellows at the Poynter Institute for Media Studies. He remains a member of the ASNE and was a member of its board until he left the Tribune for academia in 2006.

Wycliff serves on the boards of Catalyst Chicago, Christ the King Jesuit College Prep, and the News Literacy Project.

A native of Texas, Wycliff received his B.A. in government/international studies from the University of Notre Dame and was designated a Woodrow Wilson Fellow. He attended graduate school at the University of Chicago.

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Robert R. McCormick Foundation
205 N. Michigan Ave., Suite 4300
Chicago, IL 60601

Phone: 312 445 5000
Fax: 312 445 5001