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SAN FRANCISCO (July 13, 2016) — KNBR employees called on Cumulus Media to pay a living wage at a press conference Wednesday highlighting the Atlanta-based company’s unwillingness to bargain fair wages with the local union SAG-AFTRA. Speaking in front of AT&T Park, KNBR radio personalities, sports fans, union and civic leaders and their supporters said Cumulus’ outrageous business practices are threatening local radio.

“Covering teams like the 2014 World Series champion San Francisco Giants, or the 2016 NBA finalist Golden State Warriors, or the five-time Super Bowl champion 49ers might not sound like a minimum-wage job, but that’s the reality,” said Gabrielle Carteris, president of SAG-AFTRA. “We know that Cumulus is focused on its bottom line, but this station is a proven revenue-generator. It’s time for Cumulus to stop taking its workers for granted and fairly compensate the employees who make this station great. Let’s save local radio.”

KNBR ranks fifth in estimated 2015 revenue among the 453 Cumulus-owned and operated stations, generating an estimated $25 million a year in broadcast radio advertising revenue, according to SNL Kagan, an independent market research group. Cumulus also owns Bay Area radio stations KGO and KFOG, and is the second-largest owner and operator of AM and FM radio stations in the United States.

“We love this community, we love this radio station and we love our jobs. Unfortunately, the powers that be at Cumulus know how much we love our jobs and they use that against us,” said Ryan Covay, a sports anchor, producer and host who has worked at KNBR for six years. “I was started at minimum wage. I’ve never received a raise or vacation pay. I have never received a day of holiday pay. The only pay increase I have received was the mandatory bump to the San Francisco minimum wage.” 

Covay encouraged members of the Bay Area community to show their support by signing the petition for fair wages at

KNBR’s on and off-air employees voted to join SAG-AFTRA in November 2014. Since then, Cumulus has refused to offer compensation in line with KNBR’s sister stations and the last attempt at negotiations was in February. “It’s time for Cumulus to come back to the bargaining table and stop taking its hard-working employees for granted,” said Matt Kolsky, an anchor and show host for KNBR.

The Save Local Radio press conference took place at 10 a.m. at the ILWU Local 34 Union Hall, 815 2nd St. in San Francisco. Speakers included Carteris (Beverly Hills, 90210); Bob Butler, radio reporter, SAG-AFTRA National Board member and former president of the National Association of Black Journalists; Matt Kolsky, KNBR producer and on-air reporter; Covay; and state Assemblymember David Chiu (D-San Francisco).

To download a photo of SAG-AFTRA President Gabrielle Carteris with San Francisco-Northern California Local President Kathryn Howell, National Board Member Bob Butler, pioneering television reporter Belva Davis and KNBR employees, click here.



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