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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- Wealthy Republican developer Ellis R. Ivory has replaced newspaperman and public relations executive L. Glen Snarr as chairman of the board of the Mormon church-owned company that publishes the Deseret Morning News.
Ivory, an unsuccessful candidate for Salt Lake County mayor last year, was named chairman of Deseret News Publishing Co. on Wednesday, the newspaper said Thursday.
Snarr asked to step down as chairman but will remain on the board, the newspaper said. Snarr has been a member of the board since May 1978 and chairman since 1996.
"I think we're at a point where someone else can do what needs to be done better than I can," Snarr said Wednesday. "I think the newspaper has every opportunity to grow. We're in the right position ... and we've got a good newspaper. I think we have a great future ahead."
Ivory, 64, was named vice chairman of the Deseret News board in 2001 and chairman of the board's executive committee in 2003. He will retain his position on the executive committee.
In a meeting with Deseret Morning News staff members after his appointment Wednesday, Ivory said he hopes to make the newspaper a happy place to work.
"There is an opportunity we have now to see some new heights in our circulation and in the respect the community has for this paper," he said.
Ivory founded Ivory Homes, Utah's top home builder for 17 consecutive years. He sold the business to his son, Clark, in 2000.
Ivory said his relationship with the home builder will not affect the newspaper's coverage of the company.
"I believe in the free press," Ivory told the newspaper staff. "I can promise you I won't meddle in any coverage."
Ivory has served as a missionary and mission president for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and has been active in several other civic and political roles.
Snarr served 14 years as chairman and chief executive of the EvansGroup advertising and public relations agency, prior to which he had worked as a reporter, city editor and executive news editor of the News.
(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)