WILK’s Sue Henry blames exit on ‘boring contract issue,’ thanks listeners

By Jennifer Learn-Andes - jandes@timesleader.com
Longtime area talk show host Sue Henry is seen in a photo from her Facebook page. “It’s been nonstop, a very overwhelming response,” Henry said Tuesday about community reaction to her departure from WILK Radio. “It’s really heartwarming because I didn’t know what to expect.” - Courtesy Sue Henry

One day after the abrupt end of her long-running WILK Radio talk show, Sue Henry said she has been touched by the large number of listeners who reached out to express their disappointment and wish her well.

“It’s been nonstop, a very overwhelming response,” Henry said Tuesday. “It’s really heartwarming because I didn’t know what to expect.”

Henry hosted the station’s mid-morning talk show, in the 9 a.m.-to-noon slot, since 2002, she said.

After wrapping up her show as usual Monday, Henry said she met with station management about the terms of her next contract. She typically has agreed to two-year deals.

During this post-show meeting, she said she and management could not reach a contract agreement.

“It was both of us. We decided we should go our separate ways,” said Henry.

The decision was solely a “boring contract issue,” she said, and it had nothing to do with the show’s content, performance or political viewpoints.

She credited the station for allowing her freedom to customize her show to her liking, with silly retro songs, a myriad of interview topics and discussions about politics and government.

“I was very mouthy,” said Henry, chuckling. “I love creativity. I love to think about content.”

The sudden decision meant she never had a chance to directly address or say goodbye to her listeners.

“With radio, your listeners become an electronic family. The people feel they know you very well, and you get to know a lot of people,” Henry said, thanking faithful followers who “hung in all those years.”

She posted a notice on Facebook Monday afternoon saying she was no longer employed by the station and added, “I wish myself well in future endeavors.” Henry said Tuesday this was a reference to traditional language that bosses convey to departing hosts in the radio business.

Henry will continue working as an adjunct faculty member and overseer of the radio station at King’s College.

She said it’s “weird” to have free time after juggling multiple jobs for so many years. Henry is open to other employment opportunities using her radio and journalism background but said she’s not going to immediately jump into something else.

The Avoca-based WILK, which is owned by Entercom Communications Corp., issued a statement Tuesday acknowledging Henry is no longer part of its news radio team.

”We are saddened to see her go, and we would like to thank Sue for her many years of service. She has been a valuable resource to our brand and to our community for many years,” the statement said.

The station will be conducting a search for her replacement and make an announcement in coming weeks.

“As the premier provider of live local news talk radio in Northeast PA, we remain committed to continuing our mission to provide our community with the local news reporting and compelling commentary that they have come to expect from our brand’s long history,” said WILK’s statement.

Longtime area talk show host Sue Henry is seen in a photo from her Facebook page. “It’s been nonstop, a very overwhelming response,” Henry said Tuesday about community reaction to her departure from WILK Radio. “It’s really heartwarming because I didn’t know what to expect.”
https://www.psdispatch.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/web1_FB_SUE_HENRY-1.jpgLongtime area talk show host Sue Henry is seen in a photo from her Facebook page. “It’s been nonstop, a very overwhelming response,” Henry said Tuesday about community reaction to her departure from WILK Radio. “It’s really heartwarming because I didn’t know what to expect.” Courtesy Sue Henry

By Jennifer Learn-Andes

jandes@timesleader.com

Reach Jennifer Learn-Andes at 570-991-6388 or on Twitter @TLJenLearnAndes.

Reach Jennifer Learn-Andes at 570-991-6388 or on Twitter @TLJenLearnAndes.