Nevada Public Radio addressing financial problems; CEO steps down

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Friday, Sept. 6, 2019 | 2:25 p.m.

Nevada Public Radio announced today that its CEO has stepped down amid financial problems that have left the station with what it called “severe cash flow issues.”

In a note posted on its website, Nevada Public Radio said CEO Florence “Flo” Rogers had vacated her position effective today as part of a wide-ranging strategy to overcome the station’s business struggles. That plan includes cost reductions that are already being carried out, including layoffs of Nevada Public Radio’s four Reno-based employees.

“The Board of Directors is implementing major cost-cutting efforts while planning a restructure of the organization to increase efficiency and revenues,” the note read. “As part of this strategy, we are reviewing and analyzing every operational expense and eliminating all such expenses that are not absolutely essential to ensure continued operations.”

Former board chairman Jerry Nadal has agreed to serve as interim CEO beginning Sept. 23, while current board members will oversee operations until Nadal begins his interim duties. Rogers, who joined Nevada Public Radio in 2001 and became its general manager in 2007, has agreed to assist the board members during the transition.

In the online note, Nevada Public Radio said the leadership change was “necessary to bring the level of financial and legal expertise currently needed to allow us to move ahead effectively.”

Nevada Public Radio is the state’s National Public Radio member station.

The announcement gave no details about the causes of the station’s financial struggles. But in recent on-air pledge drives and announcements, the station has repeatedly noted that donation levels haven’t kept pace with audience growth. The station has claimed that only 1 in 10 listeners is a contributor.

That hurts local stations because national fees increase with audience size.

Along with its restructure and cost-cutting, the station announced it also was considering sales of assets in Northern Nevada and Utah.