Bill O'Neill (media)
May 22, 1936 |
North Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
|Occupation||Former Director of News Corporation
Former EVP of News Corporation
CEO of News International, EVP and GM of New York Post
|Spouse(s)||Alene Joy Brown, m. 1962|
|Children||Son, David; daughter, Vicki (1965)|
William Alan O'Neill (born May 22, 1936) is the Australian-American former media executive who, in a 50-year career, held multiple positions within News Corporation, including two separate terms as head of News International, a Director on the company's main board, and Executive Vice President of News Corporation with global responsibility for human resources.
Early life and career
In 1952 he commenced a six-year apprenticeship as a hand and machine compositor with Truth and Sportsman, publisher of the Sydney Daily Mirror. After completing his apprenticeship and military draft commitment in the Australian Army, he traveled to the United States, where in 1958, he joined the International Typographical Union in San Francisco. He returned to Australia and the Daily Mirror as a Linotype operator just before the company was bought by Rupert Murdoch. He brought an interest in trade unionism with him from America and became a vice president of the New South Wales branch of the Printing Industries Employees' Union of Australia. Disenchanted with union politics, he joined a research and development team within Murdoch's News Limited and after a short time was selected to lead the company's industrial relations.
In 1981 he was sent to London to negotiate with the Fleet Street unions. A successful agreement allowed Rupert Murdoch to purchase The Times and Sunday Times. O'Neill and fellow British negotiator, John Collier, were named Joint General Managers of Times Newspapers Limited and appointed to its board.
In 1983 he negotiated with the print unions for their entry to the new print center at Wapping. Talks broke down and he took over duties in New York as Vice President/Labor Relations at News America. His responsibilities involved the New York Post, the Boston Herald, the San Antonio Express-News and the Chicago Sun-Times.
Most of 1986 saw him fulfilling the role of General Manager at the New York Post and meeting with the British unions in an attempt to bring the strike to an end. At the beginning of 1987 he took over as Managing Director of News International, responsible for The Times, the Sunday Times, The Sun, the News of the World and later, the Today newspaper.
He was appointed to the News Corporation Board of Directors that year and served until 1990. He transferred management of News International to Gus Fischer and returned to the United States at the beginning of 1990 to lead News Corporation's global human resources program. On November 25, 1990, O'Neill arrived in Geneva, Switzerland, to represent the United States as the employer delegate at a tripartite meeting of the International Labor Organization. He had been nominated to attend by the American Newspaper Publishers Association. The week-long meeting was convened to discuss the international working conditions of journalists. Little was achieved and this led The Guild Reporter, voice of The Newspaper Guild to write in its issue of December 14, 1990, "the cause was the U.S. labor-management issues that simmered constantly beneath the surface."
O'Neill testified before a U.S. Congressional Committee in 1991 as an expert witness on the Striker Replacement Bill. In 1993 he led the management team negotiating with the unions  that led to News Corporation reacquiring the New York Post. That year he became a United States citizen.
In 1995 he was back at Wapping, this time as CEO,while a management reshuffle was effected. At year's end he handed over control of News International to incoming chairman, Les Hinton.
Until his retirement in 2002, he continued in his role as News Corporation's Executive Vice President of Human Resources. He left the company exactly 50 years from the day he started on the Sydney Daily Mirror as a 15-year-old apprentice.
In July 2011, at the height of the phone hacking scandal at the News of the World, he was contacted by the BBC's Business Daily Program  and interviewed on his years with News Corporation and his impression of Rupert Murdoch's contribution to the newspaper publishing industry.
He married Alene Joy Brown in February 1962. They live in San Antonio, Texas, near daughter, Vicki. Their son, David, died on February 19, 2012, after, like his father, a lifetime career in newspapers. O'Neill is a lifetime member of the American Australian Association.
- News Corp Press Release, Jan. 14, 2002. http://www.zoominfo.com/p/William-O'Neill/483049
- The History of The Times, Graham Stewart, HarperCollins, London, 2005. Page 33. ISBN 978-0-00-718438-5
- Tough talker at The Times, Financial Times, February 9, 1981. Written by John Lloyd.
- John Collier's obituary, June 3, 2005, http://www.pressmon.com/cgi-bin/press_view.cgi?id=883566
- Papers face jobs battle London Morning Star, March 16, 1983.
- EDDIE SHAH and the Newspaper Revolution, David Goodhart and Patrick Wintour, Coronet Books/Hodder and Stoughton, London, 1986. Page 264.
- New York Post, March 29, 1984.
- Full Disclosure, Andrew Neil, Macmillan Publishers Ltd., London, 1996, Page 106.
- The End of the Street, Linda Melvern, Methuen London Ltd., 1986. Page 241.
- Editor and Publisher, July 5, 1986
- Hot Mettle, Brenda Dean, Politico's Publishing Ltd., London, 2007. Page 172.
- Don't look at us in terms of conflict, says O'Neill, UK Press Gazette, June 22, 1987.
- News Corporation directors appointed. New York Times, June 11, 1987. http://www.nytimes.com/1987/06/11/business/executives.html
- Murdoch Units Shift Officials, New York Times, January 18, 1990. http://www.nytimes.com/1990/01/18/business/murdoch-units-shift-officials.html
- Tripartite Meeting on Conditions of Employment and Work of Journalists http://www.worldcat.org/title/tripartite-meeting-on-conditions-of-employment-and-work-of-journalists-report-Geneva-21-29-november-1990/oclc/475361084
- Hearings on H.R.5, The Striker Replacement Bill, Committee on Education and Labor, 102nd U.S. Congress, March 13, 1991, Serial #102-19. Pages 387-404
- ,Murdoch tells of $350,000 weekly deficits at the Post, New York Times, April 3, 1993.http://www.nytimes.com/1993/04/03/nyregion/murdoch-tells-of-350000-weekly-deficits-at-the-post.html
- Labor concessions gained by Murdoch restore The Post, New York Times, July 13, 1993.http://www.nytimes.com/1993/07/13/nyregion/labor-concessions-gained-by-murdoch-restore-the-post.html?pagewanted-38src=pm
- Wapping job for Post's Bill O'Neill, New York Post, March 17, 1995 (from Bloomberg Business News)
- A New Murdoch Aide in London New York Times, March 17, 1995 http://www.nytimes.com/1995/03/17/business/a-new-murdoch-aide-in-london.html?n%7C
- "Wapping crisis claims another casualty". The Independent. 18 March 1995.
- "BA seeks theatre designer to revamp first class cabins". Marketing Week. 12 May 1995.
- "Wapping dispute boss retires". Printweek. 18 January 2002.
- "BBC iPlayer - Business Daily: End of empire for Rupert Murdoch?". Bbc.co.uk. 2011-07-20. Retrieved 2012-03-05.
- London Guardian, July 12, 2011. http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/greenslade/2011/jul/12/rupert-murdoch-newsinternational
- "San Antonio Express-News Production Technician David O'Neill Dies at 47 - See more at: http://editorandpublisher.com/Article/San-Antonio-Express-News-Production-Technician-David-O-Neill-Dies-at-47#sthash.L5RNHP5v.dpuf". Editor and Publisher. 24 February 2012.
- Who's Who (in Britain) 2001-2012, A & C Black, London, and Who's Who in Australia 2001-2014, Crown Content, Melbourne.
- Evans, Harold (1983). Good Times, Bad Times. London.: Weidenfeld and Nicolson. ISBN 0-297-78295-9. Pages 269, 270, 302, 307, 336, 368, 370.
- Melvern, Linda (1986). The End of the Street. London.: Methuen London Ltd. ISBN 0-413-14640-5. Pages 9–11,17, 18, 28, 40-50, 109, 150, 152, 155, 164, 172, 181, 222-6, 236-8, 240-2, 252.
- Stewart, Graham (2005). The History of The Times. London.: HarperCollins. ISBN 978-0-00-718438-5. Pages 33–34, 88, 115, 194, 224-226, 242-244, 248-249, 261, 287, 290-293, 432.
- Dean, Brenda (2007). Hot Mettle. London.: Politico's Publishing Ltd. ISBN 978-1-84275-200-5. Pages viii, 78. 79, 120, 121, 146, 172, 173, 182, 183.
- Wintour, Charles (1989). The Rise and Fall of Fleet Street. London: Hutchinson. ISBN 0-09-170920-2.. Page 218.
- Koschnick, Wolfgang (1990). Rupert Murdoch, Der Medientycoon. Dusseldorf: ECON Verlag. ISBN 3-430-15627-0.. Page 343.
- Hammond, Eric (1992). Maverick. London.: Weidenfeld and Nicolson. ISBN 0-297-81200-9. Pages 86, 99, 100, 111, 112.
- Neil, Andrew (1996). Full Disclosure. London.: Macmillan. ISBN 0-333-64682-7. Pages 106, 108, 134, 156-7, 188.
- Shawcross, William (1992). Murdoch. London.: Chatto and Windus. ISBN 0-7011-3451-8. Page 338.
- Kay, Ernest (1989). Who's Who in Australasia and the Far East. Cambridge.: International Biographical Center. ISBN 0-948875-05-4. Page 427.
- Goodhart and Wintour, David and Patrick (1986). EDDIE SHAH and the Newspaper Revolution. London.: Coronet Books. ISBN 0-340-39263-0. Page 264, 265, 269, 270, 272.
- Danzig, Robert (1998). The Leader Within You. Hollywood, Florida.: Lifetime Books, Inc. ISBN 0-8119-0867-4. Pages 33, 34.
- Camden New Journal book review of Hot Mettle, http://www.thecnj.com/review/041207/books041207_01.html
- Hot Mettle review, March 1, 2007. http://www.edp24.co.uk/what-s-on/hot_mettle_sogat_murdoch_and_me_brenda_dean_1_300316?action=logout
- Wapping Dispute. Hansard: House sitting, March 3, 1986. http://hansard.millbanksystems.com/commons/1986/mar/03/printing-dispute-wapping
- Wapping Dispute. Hansard: House sitting, March 7, 1986. http://hansard.millbanksystems.com/commons/1986/mar/07/employment-rights-1
- Who's Afraid Of Rupert Murdoch. PBS Frontline program, 1995. http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/programs/transcripts/1404.html
- NGA calls off News International dispute. ITN Source (list of interviews), 6 Feb. 1987. http://www.itnsource.com/shotlist//ITN/1987/02/06/140880/?s=sof
- Fischer resigns from News International, Hollywood Reporter, March 16, 1995.
- O'Neill's return a sign of the times Financial Times, London, May 1, 1995, written by Ray Snoddy.
- Fischer quits Murdoch empire, Sydney Morning Herald, March 17, 1995.
- Fischer quits as chief exec for News International, Australian Financial Review, Sydney, March 17, 1995.
- Murdoch firm confirms plans for Irish printing plant, Irish Independent, May 3, 1995.
- News Corp veteran ends 50-year career, The Times, London, January 14, 2002.
- Mr. Wapping bids farewell, Printing World, January 21, 2002.http://business.highbeam.com/410740/article-1G1-8201125/-mr-wapping-bids-farewell
- News Corp Veep O'Neill retires, New York Post, January 14, 2002. http://nypost.com/2002/01/14/news-corp-veep-oneill-retires/
- O'Neill retirees from News Corp, ZoomInfo. http://www.zoominfo.com/CachedPage/?archive_id=0&page_id=973566813&page_url=//www.NEWscorp.com/news/news_155.html&page_last_updated=2007-12-0ST06:38:21&firstname=William&lastname=O'Neill
- Needle, David (1994). Business In Context. London: Chapman and Hall. ISBN 978-0-412-48410-0.News International and Wapping. Case Study 2.1. https://cengagebrain.co.uk/content/needle29929_1861529929_02.01_chapter01.pdf
- Warwick University 2009-10 Annual Report. http://www2.warwick.ac.uk/services/library/mrc/news/infobulannrep/2009-10_mrc_annual_report.pdf
- Murdoch challenge to print unions Glasgow Herald, December 30, 1985. http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=2507&dat=19851230&id=i_Q9AAAAIBAJ&sjid=AUKMAAAAIBAJ&pg=1324,5508321
- Print peace talks fail Glasgow Herald, January 20, 1986. http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=2507&dat=19860120&id=hLdAAAAAIBAJ&sjid=6UMAAAAIBAJ&pg=6620,3508551
- Print union surrenders at Wapping Glasgow Herald, February 6, 1987.http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=2507&dat=1987026&id=RvQ9AAAAIBAJ&sjid=AEKmAAAIBAJ&pg=2325.1103752
- End of strike interview British Universities Film & Video Council, February 6, 1987.http://bufvc.ac.uk/tvandradio/lbc/index.php/segment/0001000101008
- Excerpt from History of The Times. http://books.google.com/books?id=UPZj5W9lkSwC&pg=PA224&lpg=PA224&dq=Bill+O'Neill+and+Wapping&source=bl&ots=jwHo3z5H4g&sig=tk-ZlOgawbWx0EscFrw&hl=en&sa=X&ei=3o0jUp7rLagsATyzlGlDw&ved=0CDw&Q6AEwAw#=onepage&q=Bill%20O'Neill%20and%Wapping&f=false