A major shift in leadership at American Public Media is underway. Jon McTaggart, president and CEO of the St. Paul-based radio giant, informed staff Tuesday that he has set in motion plans to step down.
APM is the country’s largest owner and operator of public radio, an empire that includes Minnesota Public Radio. McTaggart has served in his current position since 2011.
A memo, now circulating on social media, told employees that McTaggart has informed the company’s board that it is time to begin succession plans. He will remain in his role until a replacement is found.
The memo, co-signed by McTaggart and board chairwoman Mary Brainerd, didn’t directly address two current controversies, the dismissal of Garrett McQueen, the only Black on-air personality on MPR’s classical station, and MPR reporter Marianne Combs’s very public resignation in which she accused her bosses of stalling on a story about a co-worker facing misconduct allegations.
The day after Combs resigned, Eric Malmberg, a DJ for the Current was fired.
But McTaggart’s note did address a desire to push for a more equitable and diverse workplace.
“We are deeply saddened by the pain felt by individuals in our organization,” the memo read. “The Board and the entire leadership team are committed to continuing to listen carefully, learn from others and take actions — guided by our shared values — that ensure a work environment where everyone is truly safe, welcome, respected and appreciated.”