Shakeup At Npr In Wake Of Analyst's Firing
National Public Radio admitted on Thursday that it had mishandled the termination of analyst Juan Williams and said that the executive who fired him has resigned. Williams was axed after appearing on a Fox News program during which he remarked that when he sees someone in "Muslim garb" on an airplane, "I get worried. I get nervous." NPR said that it had asked a law firm to make an independent review of the firing and that it had criticized it and urged that the public broadcaster revise its ethics guidelines. NPR news chief Ellen Weiss, a 28-year veteran of the network, made no apologies for firing Williams, insisting that her decision "was based on the highest journalistic standards." She also noted that her decision had been supported by NPR CEO Vivian Schiller, who remarked after the firing that Williams needed to keep his thoughts "between him and his shrink." Schiller herself received an implicit reprimand from the NPR board, which, while expressing confidence in her leadership, remarked that it was concerned "over her role in the termination process and has voted that she will not receive a 2010 bonus." Following his termination, Williams was quickly hired as a commentator at Fox News, where on Thursday he remarked that he was surprised by the outcome. He called Weiss's resignation "good news for NPR."