By New Times
By Connor Radnovich
By Robrt L. Pela and Amy Silverman
By Ray Stern
By Keegan Hamilton
By Matthew Hendley
By Monica Alonzo
By Monica Alonzo
We've heard that the Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away. But God only knows why Channel 12 head cheese C.E. "Pep" Cooney would taketh such a cheap shot at Patti Kirkpatrick.
Last week, the general manager of KPNX-TV rescinded an Employee of the Month award that station employees had voted to departing anchorwoman Kirkpatrick.
For this magnanimous gesture, "Pep," you deserve an award of your very own. Congratulations on winning New Times' second-ever Bill Close Award.
Taketh that, "Pep."
Named in honor of Channel 10 fossil Bill Close, the prize is periodically bestowed upon local broadcast figures who go below and beside the call of duty.
Kirkpatrick was handed her walking papers last month amid eyebrow-raising reports that it was she--and not co-anchor Kent Dana--who was responsible for the station's sagging ratings. Kirkpatrick, who is heading to Channel 3, wraps up her six-year stint at Channel 12 following tonight's 10 p.m. broadcast.
Viewers apparently weren't the only ones who wondered if Kirkpatrick was getting a raw deal. Co-workers recently recognized Kirkpatrick's work at the station by naming her Employee of the Month, an honor that is accompanied by a $50 gift certificate to a local restaurant and use of a preferred parking space at the station.®MDRV¯
Contacted for comment, Kirkpatrick acknowledges that after having been told she won the award, she was informed August 5 that she wouldn't receive it.
"I was told that management, given the circumstances, had decided it wasn't the right thing to do," she says, admitting that she was "a little shocked" by Cooney's decision.
"Long story short," counters Cooney. "One: She wouldn't be here the month of August when she's supposed to be our Employee of the Month. Two: She's going to our competitor."
Besides, says Cooney, "Patti already has a parking space, anyway."
Good point, "Pep." We really like your attitude. Especially your kind words about your own station's employee-recognition award.
"It's kind of an employee thing," "Pep" explains. "It's not something that's really a company-sanctioned deal. The employees wanted to do a recognition thing, so out of the goodness of my heart, I said, `Okay, we'll give you a $50 gift certificate.' That's about all there is to it."
"Pep" adds, "This whole thing is already forgotten about."