Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Mutual Decision

OK, so we're a bit out of the saddle, but yes, we did actually manage to find the story written by Plain Dealer media columnist Julie Washington over the weekend.

(Though, as always, we appreciate the help...especially when Ms. Washington's efforts usually require a search party to find if you don't get the Dead Trees edition of the PD.)

This is hardly news to anyone who has worked in radio or TV, but stations and employees frequently have different takes on what happens when someone no longer works there.

Such appears to be the case with now-former WDOK/102.1 Cleveland morning drive-host Robin Benzle, whose departure from the CBS Radio AC outlet after 12 years we covered at the start of November.

Benzle did indeed "say goodbye", and then took off for a previously planned out-of-country trip. But she's back, and she's apparently wondering why station management called her exit from the morning drive co-host slot a "mutual decision".

Benzle tells Ms. Washington that her WDOK contract wasn't renewed:

Benzle insists she didn't want to leave.

"How can I travel if I don't have a job?" she asked. She has no definite plans.

We've gone through our earlier item, and nowhere in his carefully worded response does WDOK programmer and long-time OMW reader Scott Miller say either that A) her contract wasn't renewed or B) give any reason at all for the departure.

He did say that Benzle would be a "spokesperson for many key WDOK clients", though she presumably could continue that on her own without her contract being renewed.

Anyway, the now-former WDOK host says she hopes to return to Cleveland radio, though she tells the PD that doesn't think it'd be very likely to get an offer that doesn't cast her as a "giggle queen", noting the general male-oriented nature of Cleveland drive-time radio.

Oh, and at this point, we'd like to note that your very own Mighty Blog of Fun(tm) did not bring up the "cancer scare" issue. Ms. Benzle successfully fought skin cancer a few years ago, and urged cancer screening, but she's not dying - despite all the misplaced "get well" wishes.

No matter what he says, one way or the other, about Robin Benzle's exit, local CBS Radio honcho Chris Maduri does confirm to Ms. Washington that they're trying out potential replacement co-hosts...

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