At least one anonymous critic has called for Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) chairman Jeff Shell to step down in the aftermath of the sudden departure of BBG CEO Andy Lack who spent only a few weeks on the job, but others have expressed their support for the agency’s chairman and its board at a difficult time.
The Committee for U.S. International Broadcasting (CUSIB – cusib.org), an independent NGO which in the past has been critical of the BBG bureaucracy and continues to urge management reforms, issued a strong statement in support of Jeff Shell and the board and welcomed the appointment of André Mendes as interim CEO.
In its latest statement, CUSIB urged the BBG board to carry out management reforms at the agency. Among other issues, CUSIB has been bringing to BBG members’ attention reports of a few managers who in the view of employees seem to perpetuate a morale-killing work environment for hard-working journalists while being ignored or even protected by senior executives.
Ted Lipien who signed the statement with CUSIB co-director Ann Noonan is a co-founder of BBG Watch and supports its publication.
CUSIB PRESS RELEASE
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 04, 2015
CUSIB Disappointed to See Andy Lack Depart from the BBG
The Committee for U.S. International Broadcasting (CUSIB – www.cusib.org) has released the following statement about the departure of the Broadcasting Board of Governors’s CEO Andy Lack:
“We are deeply disappointed that Andy Lack, the Broadcasting Board of Governor’s very first CEO, will no longer serve the agency and American taxpayers. We are disappointed that he won’t be at the helm of a U.S. government agency that has many successes, but also many management problems, particularly at its federal level. Millions of people globally depend upon the agency’s media outlets for uncensored news and information.
We greatly appreciate the time that both Mr. Lack and BBG Chairman Jeff Shell shared with CUSIB members. They both put in a great deal effort to understand the many serious challenges that face BBG, as did other currently-serving BBG Governors.
We want to express our full support for Chairman Shell and the rest of the BBG Board at this difficult time for the Broadcasting Board of Governors, and particularly for the agency’s employees. We are encouraged by promises of management and program content reforms made by Chairman Shell and Governor Kenneth Weinstein at today’s meeting with BBG staff.
We are hopeful that members of Congress will pass a new and improved legislation to streamline the agency and to make its senior executive force smaller and more accountable to the bipartisan BBG Board and to American taxpayers.
CUSIB welcomes André Mendes who will serve as the BBG’s Interim CEO, and we look forward to meeting with him in the near future.
We wish Mr. Lack success in his new endeavors and are confident that in his private sector role he will continue to promote the importance of the BBG’s mission.”
For further information, please contact:
Ann Noonan, co-founder and Executive Director
Ted Lipien, co-founder and Director
The Committee for U.S. International Broadcasting (CUSIB – cusib.org) is an independent, nongovernmental organization which supports free flow of uncensored news from the United States to countries without free media.