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Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Granite Broadcasting News

Granite Broadcasting, owner of WISE-TV and former owner but now operator of WPTA-TV, has hired Kevin O'Brien as a consultant for its broadcast properties. O'Brien was formerly the head of Meredith Broadcasting Group.

The Des Moines Register published a small item about O'Brien's appointment. The full news release regarding the consultant's hiring can be found here.

On the ocasion of O'Brien's release from Meredith last year, the IMDb summarized the termination this way:
The president of Meredith Broadcasting Group, whose 13 stations reach 10 percent of the U.S. audience, was abruptly fired Friday for what was described as "violations of Meredith's Equal Employment Opportunity policies." The company declined to provide further specifics about the dismissal of Kevin O'Brien. News reports suggested that O'Brien had instituted a reign of terror since taking over the broadcast division three years ago, forcing the resignations of five general managers and six news directors within a few months. O'Brien has also been under relentless attack from some TV critics in Meredith markets for sensationalizing the news and knocking down the traditional wall between news and sales. A Nashville newspaper recently accused O'Brien and the local station of defying basic journalism standards.
Addendum: Journal-Gazette story on resignation of WPTA News Director.
Adweek story on O'Brien's termination from Meredith Broadcasting.
Column by Richard Prince of the Robert C. Maynard Insititute for Journalism Education.

Looks like Granite hired themselves a treecutter and decided to overlook his other possible charms.
I am thrilled to hear that Kevin O'Brien is finally back in the business. He is an icon in our industry, and will be tremendously successful in his new endeavor I am certain. As for the previous absurd allegations by that maniac Sue Schwarz (who is still unemployed, after being fired for incompetence), I AM one of those minority employees, and promise you that man is the furthest thing from a racist or sexist. He hired countless women and minorities and treats us like gold. You work hard and do a good job for him, he will treat you fairly and the rewards are endless, you screw up, and he will hold you accountable--iregardless of color or religion, he simply has demanding standards. I'd work for him again in a heartbeat!
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