ARLINGTON, Va. – Peter Cherukuri, a 38-year-old who grew up in Williamson and graduated from Williamson High School, has made another big job move with a national media outlet.
POLITICO announced this week that Cherukuri will join its company as Senior Vice President of Advertising and Business Development. He heads to POLITICO after working at AOL-Huffington Post, where he was the VP and general manager for the company’s Washington, D.C. bureau, leading AOL’s political advertising team to a record year during the most recent election cycle.
Cherukuri credits reading the Williamson Daily News in his high school years with “inspiring him to get into the media in the first place.”
During high school, the WHS grad traveled to the nation’s capital. A former publisher of Roll Call, a Washington newspaper covering Capitol Hill, Cherukuri then joined Huffington Post.
Cherukuri was born in Brooklyn, N.Y. His father was a local surgeon, his mother a nurse, who moved the family first to Houston, where his father trained at the Texas Heart Institute. Cherukuri was just a toddler when they moved to Mingo County.
“A big consideration for my family was religion,” Cherukuri said. “My dad really wanted to raise his family in sort of a God-fearing community.”
Both of Cherukuri’s grandfathers were Christian preachers in India, where his parents are from.
He said at age 14, he saw “Citizen Kane,” the 1941 movie about a newspaper publisher. Later on while at WHS, he was in the Key Club. That organization made the trip to Washington, which sparked his passion for politics.
While in high school, Cherukuri played basketball for the Wolfpack. His coach David Hatfield said he couldn’t shoot, but still presented him with the “Mr. Hustle” award, “because he worked harder than anybody else.”
It must be special to him because he still keeps that award in his office.
Cherukuri graduated from Williamson High School in 1993 and studied political philosophy at Colgate University in Hamilton, N.Y.
“Peter is a leading expert and executive in the influencer advertising market,” said POLITICO Chief Revenue Roy Schwartz. “His credibility and expertise will ensure we maintain our position as the advocacy advertising leader in Washington and will be a great asset as we continue to expand outside the Beltway.”
In his new role, Cherukuri will lead POLITICO’s advertising team and will focus on developing new products and revenue streams in areas such as data targeting, video, mobile and branded content.
POLITICO is a non-partisan, Washington-based political journalism organization that serves as the one-stop shop for Whitehouse coverage, Congress and politics.