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Road Runner appoints president

The high-speed Net access provider names William Gordon III as president, coming after a long delay in finding a top executive and as questions arise about the company's future.

High-speed Net firm Road Runner named a new president today after a long search as questions persist about the company's future.

William Gordon III, who has been serving as Road Runner's chief financial officer, will oversee all operations of the company and strategic direction as the new president. He will also report to the board of directors.

Carl Rossetti, an executive vice president with Time Warner Cable, had been serving as interim chief executive since June 1998, when Road Runner launched a search for a permanent replacement. With Gordon's appointment, the search for a chief executive has been discontinued, according to a spokeswoman.

Road Runner, owned by a collection of companies such as media giant Time Warner and cable operator MediaOne Group, had previously been viewed as a spin-off candidate. But with the pending merger of Time Warner and America Online, some industry watchers wonder whether Road Runner will cease to exist as an independent company. Time Warner is the largest investor in Road Runner.

The company declined comment on its future plans on remaining independent.

AOL had been searching for a way to get its service piped through cable, and with its upcoming Time Warner merger, it has found a way. Analysts have also noted that Road Runner could become a bargaining chip in the larger game over local cable-based phone service and other services.

Gordon joined Road Runner last June, as part of the company's expanded senior management team. Before joining the cable Internet company, Gordon was chief financial officer for BET Holdings.