Eric Ferguson, the longtime morning show host of The Mix on WTMX 101.9-FM, announced Friday he's exiting the radio station amid multiple allegations of sexual misconduct, according to the Daily Herald's media columnist Robert Feder.
The radio personality, who has been off the air throughout October, told colleagues in an email that he feels "returning to the air at this time, in this environment, will be an unfair distraction to my colleagues and the rest of the morning show members who work so hard."
Ferguson faces multiple lawsuits after at least three women he worked with, a former co-host, producer and sales manager, accused the radio star of misconduct or harassment.
Melissa McGurren, Ferguson's former morning co-host, filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission late last year, saying Ferguson sexually harassed her and created a hostile work environment at the Mix.
McGurren, who worked at the station from 2002 to 2020, suddenly went off the air in December and then posted a video on social media.
"I just think the important thing is the truth and hopefully, and not hopefully, the truth will come out," she said at the time.
Cynthia DeNicolo, a former producer, filed a lawsuit against Ferguson in May, claiming he forced her into oral sex several times in 2004 and that his behavior was well known by station management.
"By 2019, Hubbard Radio….knew Ferguson was a serial sexual predator but decided to protect Ferguson to avoid losing the financial benefit from his top-rated ‘Eric in the Morning’ show," she claimed in a lawsuit.
A third complainant, Kristen Mori, a former salesperson at the radio station, alleged Ferguson slipped his hands under her jacked and grabbed her breasts at a company Christmas party in 2003.
Writing to colleagues, Ferguson said he's "energized to move forward" and defend himself against the claims that have been made.
Ferguson's full email to colleagues published by Feder is below:
Many of you have asked if I am returning to the air on November 1st. During the time I have been off the air, I have had the chance to take a deep breath and reflect on my 25 years at WTMX, and take pause to consider what I want to do at this point of my life. The success we’ve enjoyed and the gratitude I feel is overwhelming. I would like to think what we achieved is unique and special in the history of Chicago radio.
For the first time in my career, I feel lucky to have been able to take time away from the daily demands of morning radio. It’s allowed me to reflect, focus on myself, my family, and my health, and gain new perspective and resolve. I feel that returning to the air at this time, in this environment, will be an unfair distraction to my colleagues and the rest of the morning show members who work so hard.
As a result, and after discussions with Hubbard leadership, we’ve decided it is best that I step away from the show. I’m energized to move forward and defend myself against claims made against me and the station, and look forward to seeing them through to their conclusion. I am confident that at the end of the day the courts will rule and the right outcome will prevail.
I have not yet decided what’s next for me. What I do know is I leave you in great hands. Whip, Nikki, Violeta, and Swanny are true professionals and the best at what they do. It will be fun to listen to their success. I appreciate all the love and support I have received over the years from current and former coworkers, friends in the media, and most importantly the Hubbard family. But most of all, I want to say thank you to the listeners. I have been extremely touched by your unwavering support and kind messages. It has been the honor and privilege of my life to be lucky enough to be a part of yours. Thank you for helping a small‐town boy from Elburn realize his dreams come true.