Arizona businessman and former President of Cox-Arizona Publications Charles “Chuck” Wahlheim has died at the age of 82. A cause of death wasn’t immediately released, but his family says he had been in failing health for some time.
He had an extensive career owning and/or operating over 50 newspapers, network and cable television stations — both as a publisher and corporate CEO. He assisted Rupert Murdoch with his first U.S. newspaper acquisition; Wahlheim, started using the East Valley brand in the Mesa Tribune, Chandler Arizonan, and the Tempe Daily News — newspapers purchased by the Cox newspaper chain out of Atlanta — as a marketing device aimed at giving his company’s newspapers creditability as an alternative.
He co-founded the 850-member “East Valley Partnership” to identify, pursue and otherwise influence important regional businesses and political interests; he co-founded “Kid’s Voting,” a non-profit nationwide organization that helps educate more than 5 million children in 41 states on the importance of democracy and voting in America.
He is a veteran of the Korean War having served in the U.S. Army. He is survived by his wife, three sons and two daughters. Funeral plans weren’t immediately released.