The president of iHeartMedia-Atlanta is “no longer with the company” after the video was shown to use racial slurs



CNN

An iHeartMedia radio executive is out of a job after a video surfaced that repeatedly used racial slurs, according to a company spokeswoman.

iHeartMedia-Atlanta president Drew Lauter is “no longer with the company,” Meg Stevens, the company’s senior vice president of programming, told CNN in an email.

CNN obtained the videos from attorney Jason Castle, who represents a Black iHeart executive who was in the car and recorded the videos. They were taken in August 2021 as the group was leaving a local charity golf tournament, he says.

The videos show Lauter using multiple variations of the n-word and other expletives while riding in the backseat of a vehicle.

Also, reaching into the front seat, grabbing the driver – a male member of iHeartMedia’s top regional sales team – and miming petting while using aggressive, offensive and sexist language. Lauter appears drunk throughout the clips.

Castle told CNN by phone that the behavior happened “quite often” and said Lauter created an “environment full of sexual harassment and racial discrimination.”

CNN has reached out to Lauter for comment, but has not heard back.

Castle said iHeart officials were aware of the situation when it happened last year and took no apparent action against Lauter after the recordings were released.

In a statement to CNN, Stevens said: “We were not made aware of the video (or the instance) until recently, a year after it was recorded. … while we do not comment on personnel matters, allegations of this nature are against our company values ​​and our policies and are very We take them seriously. As soon as we became aware of them, we acted quickly, engaging an outside investigator to conduct a thorough review, and when we received the outside investigator’s findings, we took appropriate action.”

IHeartMedia-Atlanta employees were notified of the decision Thursday.

Castle said all communication about his client and Lauter has gone through iHeartMedia’s legal team. CNN could not determine whether Lauter has obtained individual representation.

iHeartMedia is the country’s largest radio corporation, with more than 860 FM and AM radio stations nationwide. They also dabble in podcasting and internet radio.