American Media, Inc. today named the former California governor its "group executive editor" for Muscle & Fitness and Flex magazines, coinciding with this weekend's 25th anniversary of the Arnold Classic bodybuilding competition in Columbus, Ohio. He will provide "strategic and creative input" and write monthly columns in the magazines, AMI said.
The publisher previously paid Schwarzenegger at least $1 million annually before he resigned from the post in 2005. Critics pointed out that the governor profited off magazine ads for dietary supplements at the same time he was considering legislation aimed at curbing youth use.
Schwarzenegger in 2004 vetoed one such bill at the same time he was an AMI editor. A year later, he signed legislation written by the same lawmaker, Democratic Sen. Jackie Speier, that required high school athletes to sign a pledge against taking dangerous supplements and requiring coaches to receive related training.
Schwarzenegger at the time denied any conflict but said he didn't want there to be "any question or doubt that the people have my full devotion." Later, Schwarzenegger joked about the loss of millions of dollars: "I have no problem about the money, but my wife had a little problem with that. She was worried - that means less diamonds or something like that."
Schwarzenegger has appeared on the covers of the magazines more than 60 times.
PHOTO CREDIT: Arnold Schwarzenegger in his youth poses against the hills of Los Angeles. Schwarzenegger achieved fame first as a champion body-builder, then made the jump to film in the 1976 documentary "Pumping Iron." Sacramento Bee file