NPR just announced that CEO Vivian Schiller has resigned. Statement below.
Yesterday’s video was the latest controversy to rock NPR. Last November long-time contributor Juan Williams was unceremoniously fired after making remarks about Muslims on Fox News that NPR said undermined its credibility, but which many people saw as evidence of NPR’s liberal lean and inherent dislike of Fox News.
NPR came under a great deal of criticism in the aftermath of the firing, which like yesterday’s video release happened in the midst of pledge week. Schiller, herself, later publicly took blame saying ‘we handled the situation badly.”
Meanwhile, yesterday’s ‘sting’ was taken up by opponents of NPR’s federal funding as further evidence that NPR should not be receiving any. NPR currently gets about 10% of its funding from the government. If that were removed NPR itself would likely be fine, but the smaller member stations that provide much-needed local coverage in rural areas would not.
Schiller’s ousting suggests (screams?) that NPR is running scared from the idea that that funding might be lost, or that its pledgers will be frightened off by the words of a employee who, in fact, had nothing to do with its news reporting.
Schiller came to NPR from the NYT in early 2009, where she was much-credited for helping bring the paper into the digital age (she is responsible for killing the widely resented Times Select). At the time she described the NPR job as a “once in a lifetime opportunity.”
Meanwhile, James O’Keefe gets another scalp and NPR will likely spend the next little while attempting to kiss the arse of both Congress and the multitude of liberal listeners outraged the organisation cowed to a kid with a video camera.
The NPR Board of Directors announced today that it has accepted the resignation of Vivian Schiller as President and CEO of NPR, effective immediately.
Board Chairman Dave Edwards said: “The Board accepted Vivian’s resignation with understanding, genuine regret and great respect for her leadership of NPR these past two years.
According to a CEO succession plan adopted by the Board in 2009, Joyce Slocum, SVP of Legal Affairs and General Counsel, will be appointed to the position of Interim CEO. The Board will establish an Executive Transition Committee to develop a timeframe and process for the recruitment and selection of new leadership.
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