Two Bangor, Maine newscasters gave their bosses two figurative middle fingers in the form of resigning on-air at the end of their 6 p.m. newscast Tuesday, the Bangor Daily News reports.
WVII – ABC7 anchors Cindy Michaels and Tom Consiglio ended their broadcast by quitting their jobs before they had alerted anyone in the newsroom about their decision.
At the end of the broadcast Michaels, the station’s news director, said, “And finally tonight, this will be Tony and my final show together here on ABC7. The last six years have been an interesting and enjoyable time for both of us as we have been the longest running news team in Bangor.”
Consiglio added, “Some recent developments have come to our attention, though, and departing together is the best alternative we can take.”
The duo told the Daily News that their mutual resignations stemmed from internal conflict with upper management that had culminated over the past four years. Michaels and Consiglio were told to report “unbalanced news, politically,” although neither would elaborate which way they were directed to lean.
“We figured if we had tendered our resignations off the air, we would not have been allowed to say goodbye to the community on the air, and that was really important for us to do that,” Michaels said in an interview with the Daily News.
“There was a constant disrespecting and belittling of staff and we both felt there was a lack of knowledge from ownership and upper management in running a newsroom to the extent that I was not allowed to structure and direct them professionally,” Michaels said. “I couldn’t do everything I wanted to as a news director. There was a regular undoing of decisions.”
Michaels’ and Consiglio’s boss, Mike Palmer, was not surprised by the double resignation but disagreed with how they both characterized the workplace.
“Upper management is not involved in the daily production of the news. Period,” Palmer told the Daily News. “We’ve made great changes over the last few months and are not slowing down.” He said he was already looking to replace the pair.