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Lawmaker Wants CPB to Probe Harrison Hiring

Jun 30, 2005  •  Post A Comment

Sen. Byron Dorgan, D-N.D., has asked the Corporation for Public Broadcasting’s inspector general to investigate whether CPB’s recent decision to hire Patricia Harrison as its new president and CEO followed standard corporation operating procedures.

In a June 29 letter to Kenneth Konz, CPB’s inspector general, Sen. Dorgan said some members of CPB’s board had challenged the search process as “unnecessarily rushed and not in keeping with the traditional open and transparent nature of past presidential search efforts.”

Also in his letter, the lawmaker accused Kenneth Tomlinson, CPB’s chairman, of having “engineered” the selection of Ms. Harrison, a former co-chair of the Republican National Committee. “I believe that an IG investigation of this matter is warranted and would address the concerns of many in the public broadcasting community regarding the selection process and its outcome,” Sen. Dorgan said.

At the request of other Democratic lawmakers, CPB’s inspector general is already investigating, among other things, Mr. Tomlinson’s hiring of consultants to monitor PBS programming for bias.