Tom Joyner Reportedly Being Forced Into Early Retirement

Entertainment | 12/02/2015 | 09:00 AM EST


Sources say Joyner will make his exit around the same time President Obama leaves office

UPDATE: Tom Joyner and Reach Media have responded to the retirement rumors. Read what they had to say here.
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Tom Joyner
's days on the radio might be numbered. A new report from Daily Mail claims the legendary syndicated radio host is being forced into an early retirement to make room for younger talent.


A source says the plan is to have Joyner, 65, out by the time President Barack Obama leaves office. The transition is reportedly being put in place by radio conglomerate Radio One and Joyner's former business associate David Kantor.


"They think going with a younger, fresher show is the way to go and the entire plan has been orchestrated by the man who actually launched Tom into syndication originally," the insider said.


In 1994, Joyner made history by becoming the first African-American host in national syndication with "The Tom Joyner Morning Show," featuring co-hosts Sybil Wilkes and comedian J. Anthony Brown. The show went on to become the No. 1 syndicated urban morning show and one of the most successful syndicated shows in radio history.


The source continued, "He was like the Muhammad Ali of radio, the greatest of all time. He was a superstar in the Black community and had crossover appeal that made him respected by the mainstream as well."


But times have changed and it seems Radio One and Kantor (who was named CEO of its radio division in October) have new plans for the company. Joyner's contract ends in December 2016 and insiders believe that is the perfect time for the radio legend to make his exit.


"Tom's show has always been about community activism, education and social justice and he played a major part in helping President Obama get elected," the source said. "They felt that the end of Obama's term would be the ideal time for him to also leave."


Radio One reportedly has plans to bring in another syndicated host, Russ Parr. The source claims the plan is to transition "The Russ Parr Morning Show" into major markets throughout the rest of next year, until Joyner is completely out of the picture.


Joyner is said to be heartbroken over the news and sees it as "the ultimate betrayal."


The source added: "He's always moping around and looking like his world is coming to an end. It's like someone turned the light off in his eyes. [...] Tom isn't ready to go and hasn't even made plans for life after radio. Radio is his passion and it's all he knows."

 

(Photo: John Sciulli/Getty Images)

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