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KHSU deserves better




That the university’s creature has turned around to bite it involves all sorts of delicious irony. (“Station Identification,” July 31). When Elizabeth Hans McCrone was pushed from her perch in Advancement, she needed a new place to roost. KHSU turned out to be the unlucky nest for this bird. As some may recall, KHSU already had one of most accomplished figures in public radio, Terry Green, as station manager. Terry could fix the transmitter, do the audits, create programming, handle the accounting, host radio shows and more. He was also making less than half of Hans McCrone’s salary and benefits. So naturally the University never even considered him as GM and unceremoniously shoved him out of the nest (Terry is now the GM for KUSP Santa Cruz -- lucky ducks!).

Fast forward to the so-called “GM search.” After McCrone’s decidedly lackluster interim tenure -- she was put up against two other candidates, both with vastly superior public radio credentials -- the university picked the candidate they thought they could control, without so much as a thought to competence or experience. Then, in July of 2007, Charles Horn -- perhaps KHSU’s hardest working staff member and without question the station’s best-ever fundraiser -- was kicked to the curb in a university-sanctioned move. After a wrenching and poorly supervised search, a suitable replacement was found in Pam Long -- for whom I have high hopes -- but at a substantially increased salary. When the university appropriated the KHSU donor list in June, Glennda Couch-Carlberg -- another tireless, dedicated and efficient staffer -- decided she’d finally had enough. She has moved to another university job, and has taken her years of accumulated acknowledge and experience with her. Just how her position would be filled and utilized by the university has yet to be announced. But I’ll bet you dollars to bananas it will involve an even bigger salary for someone, and with even more of KHSU’s donors’ money thrown about as if by angry monkeys.

Which brings to current little go-round. With the snatching of the KHSU donor list and trust funds -- and the ham-fisted (but long overdue) firing of Hans-McCrone -- the university has damaged the station’s prospects even further. This brouhaha has caused the cancellation of a fundraising event and triggered underwriters and donors to call their support into question. It’s as if, after setting the place on fire, the university cut the water to the hydrants.

— Matt Knight, KHSU volunteer, Eureka

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