Mike Distelhorst was named publisher of The Fayetteville Observer on Wednesday as part of a consolidation effort by Gatehouse Media, the company that owns the newspaper.
Distelhorst, who already serves as the group publisher of four GateHouse papers in southeastern North Carolina — the StarNews in Wilmington, the Jacksonville Daily News, the New Bern Sun Journal and the Kinston Free Press — will add the Observer to his responsibilities.
He replaces Bob Gruber, who has been publisher of the Observer since August 2016.
Gruber, who came to Fayetteville from Wilmington after GateHouse Media purchased the Observer, has been in the newspaper industry for 40 years. His last day at the Observer will be Sept. 3.