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Eau Claire radio personality sounds off on longtime partner’s layoff

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McKay and Donuts 2016
Mike McKay and Donuts during News 18 story in 2016
Donuts 2016

Eau Claire (WQOW) - Less than 24 hours after a layoff impacted hundreds of iHeartMedia employees across the country, it was back to work for those left wondering what happened and what is next.

One of those is Mike McKay, the now-solo voice behind the mic of B-95's award-winning morning show.

McKay carved roughly eight minutes out of Wednesday's show to discuss his partner's layoff. (You can listen to most of that in the video above)

McKay and Donuts woke up the Valley each morning on B-95 for roughly 24 years before Donuts was let go on Tuesday.

Donuts was just one of a few casualties in Eau Claire and among hundreds across the country, according to reports.

Sources tell News 18 there were four layoffs in Eau Claire alone - Donuts and KEYS from B-95, Hannah from Z-100 and Jim Finn from Classic Rock 92.1.

On Wednesday morning, McKay called the corporate decision saddening.

"It saddened me immensely to have someone that I worked with for so many years to just be told that their services were not needed anymore," McKay said. "It was not a local decision whatsoever because if it was local decisions none of this would have ever happened and business would have been as usual."

McKay and Donuts won 12 Volume One "Best of the Chippewa Valley" awards and three awards from the Wisconsin Broadcaster's Association during their tenure. One of those was best morning show in Wisconsin.

For fans of B-95, McKay said he does not know what is next for the 'food-donuts' that would be handed out each morning. It was a daily tradition for the 'human-Donuts' to go around to different businesses and hand out bags of goodies to listeners who passed by.

iHeartMedia released a statement to News 18 on Tuesday. It said in part, "We’re modernizing the company to be ready for the new decade. We’re using the hundreds of millions of dollars that we’ve invested in technology and artificial intelligence (AI) and our unique scale and position in the audio marketplace." You can read the entire statement here.

Clint Berge

Clint Berge is the Social Media & Digital Content Manager for Eau Claire’s Own WQOW News 18.
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