People and Places

Lowell Green to retire from CFRA

Lowell Green, CFRA’s sharp-tongued radio host who captivated and exasperated Ottawa audiences for more than 50 years, announced his retirement early Monday.

Starting out as a news and farm reporter in 1960, Green, 79, was best known for his cantankerous exchanges with listeners who called in to speak with him about current events on the popular Lowell Green Show, which began in 1993. While some may have felt Green’s style was too confrontational, his fans loved his no-nonsense style and considered him a champion of common sense. Loved or hated, Green’s on-air conversations were always water-cooler fodder across Ottawa.

Reaction to Green’s retirement was swift.

Green told listeners his decision to step down was entirely his own, according to a statement on CFRA’s website.

“He says he wanted to go out at the top of his career,” the station noted. “And with one of his best ratings ever last fall, he felt he was at his peak.”

In an interview four years ago with Ottawa Magazine, Green was asked if he still felt he was relevant.

“More relevant than ever,” he said. “The bent of most journalists today, particularly younger journalists, is to the left wing. I’m one of the few in the mainstream media who are more conservative, questioning a lot of this stuff.”

Green plans to make regular appearances on CFRA through his retirement.

Green’s retirement marks yet another significant change in the capital’s radio landscape. In November CFRA said goodbye to Steve Madely, who also retired. And, in a controversial move, popular hosts Shelley McLean and Rick Gibbons, along with several others, were let go the same month.

 

An archival photo from CFRA's website shows Lowell Green at the mic with Terry Kielty, Joel Thompson and Ken Grant.
An archival photo from CFRA’s website shows Lowell Green at the mic with Terry Kielty, Joel Thompson and Ken Grant.