Mickey Luckoff Tees Off On Suleman, Citadel In Interview
November 1, 2010 at 4:18 AM (PT)
In an interview with the SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE's BEN FONG-TORRES, longtime former CITADEL Talk KGO-A and KSFO-A Pres./GM MICKEY LUCKOFF took more shots at CITADEL CEO FARID SULEMAN, who he described as having "no regard for people whatsoever."
LUCKOFF told FONG-TORRES that he had prepared his resignation letter in NOVEMBER 2009 and revised it in FEBRUARY, preparing for his departure. "I was putting up with a lot," LUCKOFF said, "and I made an agreement with myself: If this goes to a certain point, I've gotta go." At a quarterly luncheon for the staff, LUCKOFF said, he told employees, "I told you from the day CITADEL bought us, their reputation is well known. This fellow FARID SULEMAN, all the CBS people knew him and they warned us. But I've worked with tough people before, and I thought we garnered a certain amount of respect, and we gave it our best shot."
No regard for people whatsoever ... They're the lowest of the low.
Explaining, LUCKOFF added, "Everything that the CBS people warned us about came true: total control, can't spend a dime, and you'd have to go through layers. And then you found out that the layers were one person. He's something else. He has no regard for people whatsoever. He's apparently pretty damned skilled financially. To be able to overpay for the ABC RADIO group, take the company into bankruptcy, come out of it, pay every one of his hand picked directors $1 million each and get himself a $43 million package is unbelievable. And here we are, requisitioning pencils, driving seven-year-old news cars and going through all the pains of bankruptcy. You can see what that would do to morale."
LUCKOFF said that he stayed on to protect the staff as long as possible, but that he is concerned that CITADEL would "start bringing in some of that crap they're doing on other stations," such as DON IMUS or the block programming cleared by sister Talk KABC-A/LOS ANGELES. He said that SULEMAN and CITADEL executives "undermine you at every turn" and "approved a position for someone I'd never met or interviewed," which prompted LUCKOFF's resignation. He said his offer of two weeks' notice was rejected and the company denied him five days of vacation pay. "They're the lowest of the low," LUCKOFF said of the company.
Read the entire interview by clicking here.
[Do you now, or have you worked at CITADEL? If so, what have your experiences been like? Are they similar to MICKEY LUCKOFF, or have they been better? Please share your thoughts with the ALL ACCESS community below.]