When the longtime and popular KUOW radio host Steve Scher up and quit suddenly last week, the rapidity and surprise of the event naturally raised eyebrows. Was he pushed? Got fed up over something? Is the radio station having an identity crisis?
The story of Scher’s sudden exit is less dramatic than it might appear. “Steve certainly could have stayed, and the decision to leave was his decision,” says the station’s new general manager, Caryn Mathes. That seems accurate, if incomplete. Scher was increasingly convinced that he wasn’t going to be a good fit in the station’s revised format. At the last minute, last Friday, he reached a decision point and suddenly departed.
The loss of Scher is a big one in local journalism. His departure is part of the steady loss of experienced journalists with lots of institutional memory.
As for the abruptness, Scher told Brewster: "I like to pull the Band-aid off fast."