I have uncovered something very interesting about Cumulus CEO Lew Dickey that may give you some insight into how this powerful radio consolidator thinks.
When the term family jewels is used – say, to describe the pat downs that TSA is giving travelers these days – it is used to describe a person’s private parts.
In the Dickey family, the family jewel is the media operation that was handed down from father to son and siblings.
That is why it is a bit odd that in a lawsuit that Dickey inflicted upon his former Danbury, CT and Westchester, NY manager Kristin Okesson, Lew Dickey is asking a federal magistrate to in a sense pat his ex-employee down for resigning her job and leaving the company, but hands off of his family jewels.
It is apparent to some that the Dickeys are looking to inflict as much financial harm on this female executive who resigned, went to work for a more respected operator and then filed a discrimination suit against Cumulus.
In essence Dickey wants Okesson to pay him almost a million dollars for the financial hurt she allegedly brought upon his junk.
What he didn’t count on is that Kristin Okesson’s new employer is paying all her legal bills and that for the first time Tricky Dickey may not only lose his lawsuit but regret that he ever filed it.
This is a story of Thanksgiving to anyone who has ever been screwed by an employer who seemingly had all the power and money to get their way.
There are new developments in the Okesson case which read more like a soap opera than a legal action. Closing arguments were heard in Bridgeport on November 9th.
After hearing what is looming over the Dickey empire, Suing Lew will probably try to negotiate a settlement with the person he picked on probably because she stood up to him every step along the way.
Dickey appears ready to lose and wind up with unintended consequences, but until he settles and a gag order is imposed on how much that settlement will cost, this is a public story of vengeance and bad policy.
No one ever leaves Cumulus and lives to tell the story (let alone get costs and damages) but it could happen to Kristin Okesson.
And wait until you hear how this entire lawsuit may backfire in Dickey’s face.
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