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CPB IG To Investigate Harrison Hiring

According to Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-N.D.), the Corporation for Public Broadcasting's inspector general has agreed to investigate the selection process for new CPB President Patricia Harrison.

Dorgan had asked Inspector General Kenneth Konz on June 29 to look into CPB Chairman Kenneth Tomlinson's role in "installing" his choice of former Republican National Committee Co-chair Harrison, who has been in the job for a week.

"Complaints that the selection process was inadequate are significant and come from people in a position to know the facts," said Dorgan. "I think such an investigation is not only appropriate but very much needed. We rely on the Corporation for Public Broadcasting to be a fair and unbiased steward for public broadcasting. The selection of its President should be beyond reproach."

The investigation will be rolled into another ongoing IG investigation into whether CPB's expenditure of $14,000 for an outside consultant to look into bias on noncom shows and the hiring of lobbyists to argue against changes in CPB board composition were appropriate.

Jeff Chester of the Center for Digital Democracy applauded the move: "Senator Dorgan's request will help bring a spotlight on the unprofessional and biased CPB search process for its new president," he said.

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.