Andrew Speno, one of our favorite local media personalities, is no longer with Fox 25. As Steve Largent would say, "That's bull shit!"
We first heard the news at around 4:30 today via an email from an Ogle Mole. The Mole, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, claimed that Speno, along with News Director Joe Spadea and an employee from HR, were all fired or asked to "resign."
Speno confirmed this news at about 5:00pm on Twitter:
This sucks. As this old "OKC Media Approval Rankings" poll shows, everyone seemed to like Andrew Speno. He was Oklahoma City's version of Brian Williams. He came across as professional and trustworthy, yet he also had a subtle humor and wit that could make you laugh. That humorous side was good, but it also got him into trouble. He had to publicly apologize a few weeks ago after making a funny, yet "insensitive," smart ass remark about Whitney Houston and her crack pipe on the air.
Oddly enough, we're hearing that the crack pipe comment isn't what led to Speno's departure. According to our sources, "stirring the pot" and either knowing about and/or failing to alert station management to an HR "issue" may have lad to his demise.
What's that HR issue? Well, read this Q&A from our Friday Mailbag that was posted on March 16. When you do, keep in mind that Channel 25 also parted ways today with News Director Joe Spadea and an employee in the HR department.
Q: This guy is the mack daddy of all mack daddies! He is hitting on Liz and Deeda! BRAZEN!
A: Let’s give KOKH news director Joe Spadea a little break. For one, it’s not like he turned into a rogue Twitter creeper like Bob Barry Jr. He’s just inviting the attractive female employees he supervises to meet him in front of the fireplace at Rococo. It’s not like they work in the KOKH HR department or anything.
On that note, I think I'm going to finish this post up. Hopefully things work out for Speno. He's a talented guy and will surely land on his feet. We wish him the best of luck. As for the other people involved, we wish them the best of luck, too. Let's just hope they get some counseling.
Update: We are also hearing that Speno's position as a partner in "The Dry Design" group may have had something to do with his departure. Also, just to clarify, we are not implying that Andrew Speno had an inappropriate relationship with any Fox 25 employee. What we are saying is that he may have known of — or gossiped about —inappropriate relationships between employees at KOKH.