John Paton has built and led media companies in the UK, Europe, the US and Canada ranging from less than $20m in revenues to more than $1.2bn and from 100 employees to 10,000 employees. He is the founder and former CEO of Digital First Media, the No. 2 newspaper company in the U.S.
He is a globally recognized leader in the digital transformation of troubled companies, with a focus on using data and technology to deliver meaningful change. He has held multiple chief executive positions and appointments on both public and private corporate boards and has more than $7 billion in media transactions and financings under his belt. In 2009, he was awarded US Publisher of the Year by Editor & Publisher.
John Paton is currently the Chairman of two leading British newspaper titles, The Independent and The Evening Standard, as well as Executive Chair of luxury media company BOAT International Media. He is an Investment Committee Member of Pembroke VCT, a publicly traded investment fund.
He has also served as a director of The Guardian for six years and a director of Spain’s El Pais and PRISA for five.
John Paton is a graduate of Ryerson University’s journalism program, where he has been named an Alumni of Distinction, and Harvard University Graduate School of Business Administration’s Finance for Senior Executives program.
He is the founding sponsor of the Wordsfest literary festival. In 2020 John Paton was appointed as a non-executive director of the Home Office.