95.7 FM The Game

Ralph Barbieri suing Cumulus/KNBR for $10MM, once made $380K per year

Now we know what Ralph Barbieri will talk about on 95.7 FM The Game. Barbieri is shooting for $10 million in a suit filed today by his lawyer, Angela Alioto at San Francisco Superior Court. The suit can be viewed here, includes several very interesting notes, including:

— “On November 1st, 2007, Barbieri and the predecessor in interest of the Defendants entered into a written four (4) year employment contract for an annual salary of $380,000, a far cry from the previous $3.00 an hour. Whether at $3.00 an hour or $380,000 a year, Barbieri loved his job.”

(Note: the $3.00 per hour is in reference to his earnings at his “first regular radio talk show at K108” in Hawaii.)

— “On February 15th, 2006, Barbieri was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease (PD). Barbieri did not disclose this diagnosis to his superiors as he was afraid of adverse employment consequences. However, he did confide in his radio partner, Tom Tolbert. Eventually, on May 19th, 2011 and August 2nd, 2011, he did tell all of the defendants. The disabilities have never in any way prevented Barbieri from performing the essential duties of the job, which he did until the day he was wrongfully terminated on April 10th, 2012. In fact, his partner of 15 years, Tom Tolbert, upon hearin of Barbieri’s termination stated “he is still as energetic as ever.”

(Note: emphasis seen in the lawsuit itself.)

— “In September 2010, Barbieri learned he had Diabetes II. He did not tell anyone at the workplace.”

— According to the suit, Lew Dickey “told Barbieri he could count on having his job at least until Barbieri’s son completed his education.”

— “Relying upon the promise of Defendant Dickey, Barbieri enrolled his son, Tayte, in a private middle school that charged tuition of $30,000. To address a learning disability, Barbieri arranged for special testing, which cost approximately $10,000.”

— Bill Bungeroth and Lee Hammer repeatedly questioned Barbieri’s health and energy level on the air over Barbieri’s last year at KNBR. “Bungeroth yelled at Barbieri: ‘You do not have enough energy. What is wrong with you? We have some competition now, the new station across the street (95.7).’

— “The Plaintiff was concerned his Parkinson’s disease would be discovered by bloggers would then (sic) publicize it.”

— Barbieri claims Hammer was “spying on him” in response to his frequent tardiness, listing all of the times Barbieri’s car came into the parking lot. “According to the email, the surveillance of Barbieri’s car started on August 14th, 2011, 12 days after he had informed them of Parkinson’s and 2 and a half months after they learned of the Diabetes II.

— After disclosing his diabilities, Barbieri claims Cumulus refused to renew his four-year contract, instead going with “a one year agreement, with a three month probationary period and a substantial pay cut, i.e. approximately 1/3 of his previous earnings.”

— The suit claims that “clock-management issues are akin to “holding” calls in football; one could call them on virtually every play, if one wanted to.”

— Barbieri takes 81 pills a day.

— The suit lists seven ways Barbieri suffered workplace harassment:

A. Yelling at Plaintiff;

B. Micro-managing his work;

C. Imposing meritless, petty discipline;

D. Disciplining Plaintiff for using the restroom;

E. Malicious “jokes” and ridicule;

F. Public humiliation; and

G. Surveillance.

— “The Plaintiff hereby requests a trial by jury.

***

“WHEREFOR, the Plaintiff requests the following relief: Ten million dollars.”

34 Comments

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34 Comments on "Ralph Barbieri suing Cumulus/KNBR for $10MM, once made $380K per year"

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Butcherboy415
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Butcherboy415

Wow this pretty interesting… Hammer don’t look good…

Jeff
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Jeff

It will be settled out of court for an undisclosed fee.

Butcherboy415
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Butcherboy415

Tough to feel sorry for him complaining on air about his $300,000 salary when average Joes like us wont see that in 3 or 4 years… And I like Ralph but….

Gooselosgatos
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Gooselosgatos
I got no problem with him making that kind a dough. He worked 30 years in a tough business to make that kind of money. Ralph had an MBA from an Ivy League school and didn’t go the corporate route to instead pursue his dream. Ralph got started at an Hawaiin radio station making 3 bucks an hour and when he did start making the big money after many years he gave a lot of money to local charities which I know because of a friend that worked at one (animal shelter for abused dogs) which is more than I… Read more »
JustMike
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JustMike
LOL, Ralph didnt go to an Ivy league school, he went to University of San Francisco. He WAS good at one time but about midway he used his radio show to belittle people and loved calling people “jak-offs” and idiots, everything he later became. He went to Mills HS in Millbrae Californa and claimed later he played HS upper level sports. He never played squat. Whe USF closed down USF due to Quentin Dailey issues, Ralph went on vulgar tirades about the Jesuit Principal of the school. He attended dozens of KNBR parties and the women he attempted to bring… Read more »
Fitz's Future Unemployment Check
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Fitz's Future Unemployment Check

funny how he whined about them having ridiculous ideas like him showing up half an hour before the show, or them preparing, or them sticking to the clock. what outrageous bullshit!

Gooselosgatos
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Gooselosgatos

Though ‘not preparing’ is certainly not the industry norm it is also why the show was so good – totally unscripted and authentic.

I loved that show because it sounded like 2 buddies kicking back and bs-ing with one another for 4 hours.

Refreshing…….

Fitz's Future Unemployment Check
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Fitz's Future Unemployment Check

at its best, yes. but more often than not it sounded all over the place and not very good. 5+ years ago it worked, but it was getting worse and worse.

Stan
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Stan

Hammer is another who has been pure trash in local sports. I had him pegged years ago as another snively Dick Cheney type.
The Dickeys? hide their Wiki page..another businessmen who scuttles around like a nocturnal rodents..
Barbeiri isn’t some naive person..It shows how scum big business is.

btw..Ralph sounds like this is really affecting him..his voice. He’s almost hyperventilating…hard to talk ill and upset.

Otis Byrd III
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Otis Byrd III

Man, Ralph’s voice sounds terrible in this interview. That sucks he has laryngitis.

They should’ve postphoned it to later in this week, when his voice gets back.

Stan
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Stan

Laryngitis? ..well..that’s good. Better then what I was thinking.

Gooselosgatos
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Gooselosgatos

I don’t see Ralph lying about this but there are two sides.

If what Ralph said is true, weather he wins the lawsuit or not, he has done a service for all the KNBR employees as management will be walking on egg shells after these revelations.

Also, listening to Ralph on 95.7 makes me realize what a fun guy he would be like to hang out with. Total character.

Stan
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Stan

I only wish Ralph could include Billy Beane in his suit..

Stan
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Stan

Those six are the metal head neo Nazi trash I will never salute.
Yeah,I read your FB. I know who you are…

Butcherboy415
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Butcherboy415
Goose the part you are totally missing is that once a plumber can no longer grip a wrench, he is finished. As evidence by today’s rambling and nonsense, he simply can not perform. He went on and on about nothing and kept bringing up money. Sorry but his argument about making more is ridiculous, he had no more leverage as his energy and attendance were spotty. Also, yes I grew up loving Ralph and will continue to appreciate his place in bay area radio, but his time is over. He reported and spoke about sports. When athletes are done they… Read more »
Stan
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Stan

wow-Just wait until you or one of your kids has a disability. You’ll find that your not willing to be kicked to the curb when you still have years of experience and skill to compensate for being slowed.
You want a primitive, dog eat dog society?..I don’t.

Dan
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Dan

Not sure how you could listen everyday…but yeah he’s done.

And this lawsuit is pretty ridiculous when stripped down to its most basic claims. Ralph thought of himself as something special. He was essentially a diva. And when the new administration took over and weren’t buying his act, this is his recourse. It’s petty and he should be lucky if he’s offered a settlement.

The Sports Leader
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The Sports Leader

Yeah agree Dan.
When Tony Salvatore was GM at KNBR Ralph and Gary Radnich always had someone on their side. In fact, you can easily make the argument that he feather-bed them all these years.
When the new guys (Cumulus) on the block showed up, well, new work performance standards were put into place. Ralph is the first causualty of those new standards.

Monty
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Monty

The one thing that bothered me about Ralph was that he always talked over his guests as if what he had to say was more appealing to listeners. That annoyed me, but I still liked listening. Tolbert isn’t the same without him.

KNBR is pretty terrible. If it were not for their ESPN Radio slots they wouldn’t be worth listening to.

Eric
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Eric
I have been in management, and know that when they want to get rid of someone it is all about documentation…even if they want to get rid of someone for another reason. Lets face it, Cumulus media has a HORRIBLE reputation and track record of how they treat employees. They have a reputation for callus behavior, and no regard for reputation or longevity. As a 30 year listener of the station, in its various incarnations, I have to say this does not look good for KNBR. They are taking a huge PR hit for even being involved in this, and… Read more »
Eric
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Eric

Ralph was done…didn’t have it anymore, but the correct way to deal with this was simply to not renew his contract.

Fitz's Future Unemployment Check
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Fitz's Future Unemployment Check

there was no way they were going to look good in this. if you fire a 28 year employee who doesn’t want to leave, it can’t end many ways not ugly. that’s just reality.

John P
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John P
Ralph is really playing the Parkinson’s card well. Did he think he was going to get lifetime employment because of his Parkinson’s? If I fear that I might lose my job someday, I’ll just say I have TBA and claim discrimination if they fire me. So Ralph admits he’s been late to work. I think that one of the job requirements of being a radio host is being on time. God knows the host can’t be bothered to hang around an extra 15 minutes until a Warriors pre-game show can start. Why does Ralph think he’s entitled to his job?… Read more »
Gooselosgatos
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Gooselosgatos
Butcher, I total disagree with your premise that ‘he was done.’ Frankly, I would have never guessed he had Parkinsons until it was publicized and never noticed any signs or symptoms on the air. Furthermore, the same qualities that made Ralph great at 47 were still there at 67. Yes, he wasn’t as energetic and had clearly mellowed but he was still uniquely himself in a day and age when most sports radio personalities come off as slick and contrived and sound like they had a Stuart Scott poster on their wall growing up. He was still the most authentically… Read more »
Outheretryinfunction
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Outheretryinfunction

I completely agree with you Goose. That interview today was rough to listen to though. Too much sour grapes and even if you don’t like you’re old bosses, to come on the air and rip them was not very classy.

Gooselosgatos
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Gooselosgatos
Outheretryinfunction, As much as I love Ralph (I started listening him when I was 11 in the early 80’s) you are right in that this was not his finest moment. I was hoping he’d become part of the Game’s rotation but I see little chance of that happening now. As a former loyal listener there was something off today that I can’t quit put my fingering on. Also, though am a feverent supporter of Ralph and wish he were still on KNBR, I have questioned his media strategy of making numerous public appearances to discuss his termination though it could… Read more »
Stan
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Stan

Eric is right..They didn’t even try to at least be clever and say they understand,but you haven’t been on time..just in decent normal honest language..something that Bunghole and Hammer and the Dicks don’t comprehend.
Well,one thing is a fact.. I’m not hearing any “the great Lee Hammer ” everyday like before from Radnich or Pecon. Why risk being hammered in the back?

The Sports Leader
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The Sports Leader

Thanks BASG.
In reading your blogg I just learned more than the story in today’s Chronicle. The Chronicle writer gave us the impression she was quietly rooting for Ralph Barbieri and made Cumulus appear like Satan himself. So much for objective and fair journalism.

Sal
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Sal
This is the way to fix KNBR, will anyone listen? Murph and Mac – get rid of Mac. What exactly does he do besides say at the end of an interview, “Yeah, thanks for coming on”, and his non-stop references to the Grateful Dead. Who cares about the GD? Radnich and Krueger- get rid of Radnich. I agree w/ everyone else, he is awful. His time has passed. Krueger can do the show on his own. Fitz and Brooks – get rid of these two. I will not listen to another second of silly middle-school joking around….”Haha, I’m gonna tell… Read more »
Snoop
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Snoop

Agree with everything you said except for Byrnes & Bruce. Byrnes is great. Bruce is boring as heck.

josephua
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josephua

What’s really ironic is that while KNBR was/is allegedly very concerned about 95.7 The Game, I was only marginally aware of their existence before the firing. Firing Ralph was free pub for 95.7 and I find myself actually listening to them from time to time, something I wouldn’t have done prior.

Matt Lawton
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Matt Lawton

Sorry Ralph, you werent THAT good. Get over it. Poor baby and his 300+k Per year. Happens to the rest of us all the time with much less cash. Get over yourself, move on, and become a productive member of society.

webdiva305
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webdiva305

Cumulus is Satan. I know. I work for the company. Worst radio company to work for. They make Clear Channel look like saints. It’s bad.

trackback
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[&#8230 ;] is his cause? Generally speaking, you can find that in the complaint Angela Alioto (who made a very questionable decision in letting Barbieri speak today) filed today. [&#8230 ;]

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