Smalley, a Newstalk ZB host, said in a column Campbell’s new job meant “introducing yet another white male broadcaster to prime time, at the expense of a strong, capable, experienced female interviewer”.
Smalley said that the appointment leaves Susie Ferguson as the only woman left on prime time radio news.
Hirschfeld, who worked for many years with Campbell at TV3, said Wilson’s new role was more senior, and one she had wanted to take up previously.
“[Smalley] seems to be suggesting somehow that it would be better if Mary Wilson stayed on air to satisfy some kind of false gender balance, rather than taking on a role where she is shaping a day to day news operation that is one of the biggest and most powerful in New Zealand.
The new role may be more senior, and in theory more powerful, but a behind the scenes editorial role is very different to an on air role. Would anyone regard the producer of Campbell Live as having been more powerful than John Campbell?