Controversy in the radio world…
On Wednesday, radio host Garrison Keillor — known for creating the live weekly variety show A Prairie Home Companion — confirmed to the Associated Press he was fired by Minnesota Public Radio over allegations of what they are calling “inappropriate behavior.”
The writer told AP in a follow-up statement he was terminated over “a story that I think is more interesting and more complicated than the version MPR heard.”
In a statement to the Minneapolis Star Tribune, the 75-year-old details an experience he had with one employee:
“I put my hand on a woman’s bare back. I meant to pat her back after she told me about her unhappiness and her shirt was open and my hand went up it about six inches. She recoiled. I apologized. I sent her an email of apology later and she replied that she had forgiven me and not to think about it. We were friends. We continued to be friendly right up until her lawyer called.”
However, in an email to MPR News, Garrison says he had alleged incidents with two coworkers.
“I have to respect the privacy of the two employees who made the allegations… I have my own recollection of events, but I don’t want to take issue with [MPR President and CEO] Jon McTaggart‘s decision. I think the country is in the grip of a mania ├óΓé¼ΓÇ¥ the whole Franken business is an absurdity ├óΓé¼ΓÇ¥ and I wish someone who resist it (sic), but I expect MPR to look out for itself, and meanwhile I feel awfully lucky to have hung on for so long.”
Interesting enough, MPR released a statement — through communications director Angie Andresen — only referencing one alleged victim:
“Minnesota Public Radio (MPR) is terminating its contracts with Garrison Keillor and his private media companies after recently learning of allegations of his inappropriate behavior with an individual who worked with him.”
Read the full statement HERE.
A Prairie Home Companion, now hosted by Chris Thile, will undergo a name change.
Keillor is scheduled to perform Wednesday night in Pittsfield, Massachusetts.
[Image via Doug Meszler/WENN.]