Search icon


31st Jul 2023

Radio presenter fired after calling female reporter ‘Barbie girl’ and ‘chick’

Charlie Herbert

Don Geronimo sacked for sexist barbie girl comments to Sharla McBride

‘Hey look, Barbie’s here!’

A radio presenter in the US has been sacked after calling a female sports reporter ‘Barbie girl’ and telling listeners that he mistook her for a cheerleader.

Don Geronimo said “I’m guessing she’s a cheerleader” when referring to Emmy-winning reporter Sharla McBride, and also called her a “chick.”

He has since been removed from his role at WBIG-FM.

McBride had been reporting from the training camp of NFL side the Washington Commanders when Geronimo made the degrading comments.

When he saw McBride, the radio presenter said: “Hey look, Barbie’s here. Hi, Barbie girl. I’m guessing she’s a cheerleader.”

Later on in the broadcast, he saw McBride again as she was carrying out interviews at the training camp and said: “Oh hey. There’s that chick that you thought said tight.

“I think she’s a sportscaster at Channel 9. Or Channel 7.”

He added: “I thought she was a cheerleader.”

Sharla McBride had been reporting from the Washington Commanders’ training camp when Geronimo made the degrading comments (Instagram/Sharla_mcbride)

Following the remarks, WBIG-FM’s parent company, iHeartMedia, confirmed Geronimo had left his job.

President of the Washington DC Region for iHeartMedia, Aaron Hyland, said in a statement to the Washington Post: “After an internal review, Don Geronimo is no longer an employee of WBIG. We take matters of this nature very seriously and this behavior does not align with our core values.”

The Commanders have also since banned iHeartMedia from broadcasting from the training camp.

In a statement, a Commanders’ spokesperson said: “We have worked hard to ensure that everyone feels safe and respected in our workplace, and we took swift action when we learned that an employee of our partner iHeart made sexually disparaging remarks to and about a member of the media while she was broadcasting live from training camp yesterday.

“iHeart and the individual were not permitted to broadcast from Training Camp today, and we will continue to work collaboratively with iHeart to address the issue and trust that iHeart will take appropriate action as it works through an internal investigation.”

Geronimo was fired for the comments (X/@donjeronimoshow)

Meanwhile, McBride has taken to social media to announce she will be “taking a few days off to process the events which have unfolded in the past 48-hours.”

She said she had been overwhelmed by the support she has received since Geronimo’s awful comments, adding that it “means a lot.”

In a statement to ESPN, she said Geronimo’s words had made her feel “incredibly insulted and embarrassed.”

McBride continued: “In my 17 years as a professional journalist, I have never been disrespected in such a blatant manner while trying to do my job. Their words were sexist and misogynistic. No woman should experience this in the workplace, and I appreciate the Commanders swift response in handling this matter.”

WUSA9 General Manager Richard Dyer said: “Objectifying women is harmful and disrespectful. We’ve heard from the Washington Commanders that they are addressing this situation directly with iHeartRadio.

“Promoting respect, empathy and equal treatment for all individuals, regardless of gender, is crucial for building respect in any workplace.”

In a post on social media, Geronimo said: “At this time I will not be providing comment on the events of the last few days. I am consulting with my advisors as to my options moving forward, including an accurate reflection of the situation.”

Related links:

Woman cancels date after man won’t wear pink to Barbie movie

Fight breaks out in cinema after parent lets child watch YouTube during Barbie screening

Amy Schumer gives her thoughts on the Barbie movie after she dropped out of playing lead role