By Darlene Seto
The stormy haze engulfing NUTV for the last two weeks is beginning to lift. The NUTV Board of Directors meeting on Wed., Oct. 3 attempted to resolve the controversy surrounding a critical letter sent from the Students’ Union to the university television station.
What occurred at the meeting, however, was the resignation of NUTV Executive Director Kevin Allen.
Allen, after almost five years in his post, will be remaining only until the end of this calendar year.
“The letter and its contents are not the main reason for my departure,” said Allen guardedly. “Perhaps someone new can bring new passion and ideas.”
Fellow NUTV staff aren’t so sure.
“NUTV is losing someone who has built the organization with honesty, integrity and fairness,” reflected producer and Program Director for NUTV, Tinu Sinha. “We wish him the best.”
There was much anger and disbelief felt by NUTV staff and volunteers after news of the letter became public. SU Vice-President Operations and Finance Greg Clayton was deluged by a barrage of messages from those involved in NUTV, both present and past.
Naomi Tercier, a member of the NUTV executive committee, sent out a member call to action accusing the letter.
“[The letter is] simply a jab at our organization made by a shrewd corporate-minded SU member that has likely never watched our programming or any of our independents,” said Tercier.
“Neither I or the SU can profit. There is no vendetta or nothing to gain,” said Clayton, commenting on the furious letters being aimed his way. “[The accusations] are unfounded, because all this is doing is creating more work for me. My term is up in seven months, how could this possibly help me?”
“They trashed me in the Gauntlet,” Clayton continued. “They rallied support against me when they should have talked directly to the SU.”
This is a direct rebuttal to comments such as ones by Erik King Smith of Creative Electronic Environment.
“Greg Clayton should take more time to understand NUTV and how it benefits Calgary instead of how making more money for the Students’ Union will benefit him.”
The SU is standing by its letter and the recommendations.
“I want to see NUTV better,” Clayton stated adamantly. “I want to see students proud of it; not only those working within the organization but those who are just viewers as well.”
However, while the board of directors meeting included both Allen and Clayton, paths still seem to be crossed.
“There was resolution,” said Allen of the meeting. “The board decided to take the letter as constructive criticism. They are going to pursue some of the ideas in it.”
Others had a different view.
“Not much was decided,” noted Clayton. “Much of the meeting was focussed on the unprofessional actions and reactions of some [people.] We didn’t really talk much about the strategic plan or the SU’s suggestions.”
It does seem the two sides are attempting to heal the sharp division between NUTV and the SU, with a common desire is to see the station do well.
“NUTV is good,” said Clayton. “I just want to see it great.”