The news director and the executive producer for the Telemundo Las Vegas have been removed from their positions.
ND Xochitl Sandoval and EP Javier Palmera were both ousted Friday, August 24.
Sandoval, a Telemundo employee who held multiple senior roles within the company in Dallas and Las Vegas since 2003, had been news director in Las Vegas since February 2014.
Palmera joined Telemundo Las Vegas as EP in March 2017. He had previously worked as a producer for WFLA-TV and WRMD Telemundo Tampa.
A station spokesperson issued the following statement about their exit:
“Xochitl Sandoval and Javier Palmera have decided to leave Telemundo Las Vegas. We are thankful for their commitment to Telemundo Las Vegas and wish them the best in their future endeavors.”
However, several sources with knowledge of the situation tell Media Moves that employees reported multiple complaints against Sandoval and Palmera alleging harassment and actions that created a “hostile working environment.”
The sources say conditions worsened after a group meeting with a national HR rep in April in which staffers voiced their concerns. The situation got so bad, they say, that within a month and a half period, five employees quit. In all, at least 9 on-air talent and producers opted to leave the station over the past year, some of whom did so without first securing another job.
In an internal memo sent to staff, SVP of News for Telemundo Station Group Ozzie Martínez said he would be heading the news department until a replacement is hired.
Media Moves reached out to Sandoval and Palmera for comment. Both emailed individual statements about their exit after publication of this story.
“I am nothing but proud of my work at Telemundo Las Vegas and although I am disappointed by the rumors and inaccuracies of my departure, I am nothing but grateful to the company that for 15 years allowed me to do what I so passionately love and that since day one and until I my last day of work extended endless opportunities of growth. It truly was time to take a break and spend much needed time with my family, loved ones and explore new opportunities in our business,“ wrote Sandoval.
Palmera issued this statement: “Change does not come easy and this made for some difficult times between groups of employees but at no point did it become what is being said. I am very sad that my good intentions and efforts to guide the team and help them become better (which have proven successful in other markets) are being misinterpreted. KBLR is a station at growth, everyday becoming better and stronger, and I am thankful for the opportunity I was given to work with the team. The station, it’s employees and the company will always have a special place in my heart.”
* Story was updated August 30 to include statements by Sandoval and Palmera.