March 03, 2008

Citadel Cuts Catch KSFO's Melanie Morgan

The addition by subtraction mandated by Farid Suleman at Citadel Broadcasting ("How can we afford to pay me $17-million a year? Fire the talent!") has netted a major casualty at 560/KSFO.

Melanie Morgan, conservative firebrand and a genius at pushing all the right buttons, will not have her contract renewed and made her final KSFO broadcast on Monday morning.

Morgan had been the high-profile co-host to Lee Rodgers on the station's morning show, having worked her way up from sidekick/underling to being the co-star of the program. In many ways, she actually upstaged Rodgers, who performs his part of the show via remote hookup. (A television set in the KSFO studio helped keep Morgan and Officer Vic "face-to-face" with Rodgers.)

Morgan published the following press release on her personal website on Monday:

Conservative Melanie Morgan Cut from KSFO Radio
* Vows to Continue Her Role as Conservative Activist *

(SAN FRANCISCO) – Renowned radio personality and national conservative leader, Melanie Morgan, delivered her final broadcast on talk radio powerhouse KSFO 560 AM today – Monday, March 3, 2008.

The owner of KSFO radio, Citadel Broadcasting, decided not to renew Morgan’s contract as part of the company’s announced across-the-board financial cost cutting.
Melanie Morgan has been a fixture on KSFO for the past 14 years, enjoying a run from 1994-2008 that far exceeded industry standards for longevity. During that time, Morgan emerged as one of the nation’s most dynamic conservative activists, using the radio airwaves to motivate listeners who shared her passion to take action and fight for causes important to them.

Morgan’s on-air activism included an effort that removed the carcinogen MTBE from gasoline in California, launching of the historic Recall Gray Davis campaign that led to the election of Arnold Schwarzenegger as Governor of California, and co-founding the nation’s largest pro-troop organization, Move America Forward.

“It has truly been an honor for me to work at KSFO for the past 14 years. What I loved most about my time at KSFO was that it allowed me to connect with listeners and take action to make real changes in the world,” said Melanie Morgan.

“We never had a one-way dialogue with our listeners, and we never believed that we had to resolve ourselves to accept the status quo. We got out of our chairs, left our homes and offices, and circulated petitions, rallied for our troops and met with government leaders. “We did all this to make sure that we left an even better world for our children than the one we had inherited from generations before us,” Morgan said.

As part of her ongoing conservative activism, Morgan has traveled to the Middle East twice to interview U.S. Troops stationed in Iraq and Kuwait. Her broadcast efforts from Iraq resulted in her winning the Associated Press’s Mark Twain Journalism Award, and The Peninsula Press Club’s award for Best Interview or Talk Show.

“Meeting our troops who are on the frontlines of the war against terrorism stands as the most powerful experience in my broadcast career,” said Morgan.

Morgan’s career with ABC began in 1981 when she was a television reporter for KGO TV. In 1984, she became an on-air personality for KGO radio where she worked for six years before switching over to ABC-San Francisco sister-station, KSFO 560 AM, co-hosting the Lee Rodgers and Melanie Morgan show.

In 2006, Citadel Broadcasting acquired the ABC Radio group. She has reported on the scene from the Marine barracks bombing in Beirut, Lebanon; the Mexico City earthquake; and the Tiananmen Square massacre in China.

Melanie Morgan says her focus in the days ahead remains unchanged: She will remain a conservative activist leader. “My commitment and dedication to serve as a leader in the movement to support our military men and women continues to grow, and I am very proud to serve as Chairman of the pro-troop non-profit group, Move America Forward,” Morgan said. Melanie Morgan is not compensated for her work with Move America Forward, a fact since the group was first launched in 2004.

Morgan will also continue her weekly column for the news website and will continue to serve as a television analyst on news programs on cable and broadcast television stations and networks. “My passion and commitment to the troops who are fighting in Iraq, Afghanistan and around the world are foremost in my heart.

"While I will miss my good friends Lee Rodgers and Officer Vic, and our great producer Sheri Yee, I am excited to stay close to the conservative grassroots. And I'll always lead with my chin out," Morgan concluded.

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