Director, LMA Board
Publisher/Owner, The Sacramento Observer
With an understanding of how to combine editorial excellence with new media style, Lawrence (Larry) C. Lee is leading The OBSERVER Media Group into the 21 st century as a powerful multi-media voice for the African American consumer. Lee — who has a lifelong career in ethnic media and marketing — inherited an admirable sense of quality, community, commendable work ethic, and dedication to excellence from his late parents, Dr. William H. Lee and Kathryn C. Lee, founders of the award-winning OBSERVER Newspapers. The OBSERVER has been regarded as “the most honored Black newspaper in America,” having received more than 700 awards for journalism excellence and community service.
The OBSERVER celebrated its 58 th anniversary in 2020.
In his role as President and Publisher, Lee has taken thatbold, creative legacy and applied it to a number of exciting products that influence, inform and impact the African American audience he serves.
In 2000, Lee and The OBSERVER Media Group launched SacObserver.com, where visitors and advertisers are afforded a quality online experience. He has also led other OBSERVER products such as SacObserver.com’s smartphone mobile site and Mobile News 2 U, an innovative mobile news delivery service, allowing subscribers to receive relevant and timely information on their cell phones. The annual California Capital City BLACK EXPO also came under Lee’s leadership. Lee’s aggressive marketing and outreach efforts helped turn the BLACK EXPO into one of the largest cultural venues in the state, drawing about 50,000 guests each year.
These exciting products are a reflection of Lee’s vision to build corporate relationships while presenting information services to underserved communities. Lee has successfully enhanced corporate relationships with companies such as: AT&T, Wells Fargo, The Sacramento Kings, SMUD, McDonald’s, PG&E and many more — developing strong ties with such companies and the African American community.
In 2009, Lee served as a Gubernatorial appointee on the California Census Complete Count Committee. He is also a senior fellow of the American Leadership Forum, Mountain Valley Chapter and a founding member of Nehemiah Emerging Leaders Program.
Larry, 47, previously served as a director on the following boards: The Sacramento Black Chamber of Commerce and Nehemiah Corporation of America (where he served as board Chair of both), the Wells Fargo Community Advisory Board, the Metro Chamber of Commerce, the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Sacramento, the National Newspaper Publishers Association, the CARES Strategic Initiative for HIV/AIDS Care and Prevention Steering Committee, and the Christian Brothers Alumni Association Board.
A graduate of the San Jose State University School of Journalism and Mass Communications, Lee was named a Distinguished Alumnus by the San Jose State University School of Journalism and Mass Communications in 2006. In 2019, Larry had the distinction of also being honored as an Outstanding Alumnus by Christian Brothers High School. The American Society of Newspaper Editors, the National Newspaper Publishers Association and the University of Missouri’s College of Journalism have also saluted Lee’s journalism achievements.
Larry is married and has two daughters.