Sep 25, 2008

Sawaya leaves Pacifica, publishes regretful critique

Explaining that she “was continually thwarted to do the job I was hired to do,” Nicole Sawaya announced yesterday that she had resigned as executive director of Pacifica Radio. Sawaya, who had given the job a second chance after quitting for several months last winter, said she gave the Pacifica National Board notice Aug. 3 that she would be out of the budget by Sept. 30. In the form of a letter to the late Pacifica founder Lewis Hill, Sawaya regretted the present state of the lefty pubradio net, which she said has “dysfunctional” governance, “shoddy and opaque” business practices and a work force that includes both “dedicated and smart” broadcasters as well as those who merely protect their self interest and resist change. Sawaya writes: “Paralysis has set in, coupled with organizational drift.” Her predecessor, Greg Guma, who had similar complaints about the difficulty of managing Pacifica, reported her resignation in his blog earlier this month. The Pacifica Board hired Sawaya by unanimous vote a year ago.

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