Mary Lucia 89.3 Leaves Current . In ‘Heartbreaking Decision’

Mary Lucia, the franchise DJ at popular public radio station 89.3 the Current, signs off Thursday afternoon.

Lucia, an original asset to the influential progressive music station and the voice of many of its announcements, unexpectedly announced her resignation Tuesday on Current’s website.

“She has long been more than a DJ for music fans,” program director Jim McGuinn said in a statement. “She’s been a friend, plays her favorite records and opens her heart to our listeners.”

In a Facebook post on Wednesday, Lucia said the underlying reasons for her “heartbreaking decision” to leave the Minnesota Public Radio station “are a long and nuanced story. The shortest version is that for years I have been trying to make a positive change in the business I am concerned about the equality and fair treatment of all my sisters at the station, past, present and future.

“Know your worth, embrace your unique talent and voice, and lift each other up.”

Lucia said she plans to continue doing voiceovers. “I’m not retiring, the pugs have to eat anyway,” she said, referring to her dogs. “I have at least 2 books in me to write. … If I end up under a bridge drinking Scope, you probably hear that too.”

Jean Taylor, who took over as president and CEO of MPR’s parent company, American Public Media, last August, went on to release a statement praising Lucia as “extremely gifted” and saying that strengthening corporate culture is one of her top priorities. is.

“I am committed to creating and maintaining a diverse, inclusive and equitable environment where all employees, including women and people of color, are respected and valued,” said Taylor, former Star Tribune board chairman and daughter from her owner, Glen Taylor.

McGuinn noted that Lucia “has been recognized as City Pages’ Readers’ Choice Best DJ almost every year of the Current’s existence and has sat behind the microphone for hundreds of memorable sessions, conversations and interviews.”

Lucia has interviewed countless rock stars, from Johnny Rotten to Tori Amos, often asking unusual questions that have nothing to do with music. She is known for her “No Apologies” movie at 4 p.m., in which she would play a commercial hit that was a guilty pleasure but was not part of Current’s playlist.

She has done voice over work since she was 17. One of her appearances was the 2016 audiobook for Bob Mehr’s in-depth biography of the Replacements, “Trouble Boys.” Lucia’s brother is Replacements frontman Paul Westerberg.

As a private individual, she made headlines in 2015 as the subject of a stalker who was sentenced to probation and a five-year restraining order. She took seven months of leave during the situation.

Lucia started her radio career in the early 1990s with evenings on REV 105, then co-hosted mornings in Zone 105 and shifted to talk radio on 1500 KSTP. She has also appeared in stage productions and TV commercials.

Lucia is one of three original hosts still with the Current, which went on air in January 2005; weekend DJ Bill DeVille and morning host Jill Riley are the others.

Lucia takes part in a parade of high-profile exits from the Current in recent years, including evening host Mark Wheat (who has retired); Sean McPherson (now music director/presenter at KBEM-FM); “Local Show” host Andrea Swensson (now working for the Prince Estate); and morning co-host Brian Oake (who was fired and now does mornings at Cities 97).

Lucia’s last shift is Thursday from 2:00 PM to 6:00 PM.

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