A Study in Synergy

Nike Money Buys a WNYC Talk Show

A Nike spokesman dismisses Ballinger's claims as anecdotal, pointing to the company's push for reform and the rise of the female managerial class in Indonesia. Of course, Nike thinks it has done more than anyone to promote women's rights—in a current Nike ad, track star Marion Jones demands equal pay for women athletes. But when it comes to substantive impact, critics say, Nike and WNYC's attempts to empower women amount to no more than lip service.

A WNYC spokesperson said there is no connection between Nike's gift to CTW and WNYC's decision to back Satellite Sisters. She would not disclose how much WNYC has spent on the show, but said listener response has been "overwhelmingly positive." Liz Dolan was "unavailable for comment."

If Dolan wanted to bury the Nike connection, she failed miserably. One of her regular guests is Rick Anguilla, whose qualification for being on the show, she says, is being a "good dad." But Anguilla also happens to work for Nike in investor relations. In 1998, he assured The New York Times that Nike had not forced Liz Dolan out. Apparently not. She's too good at playing sleazeball.

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