Omari Salisbury ‘exits stage left’ of Converge Media’s flagship show

Jun 1, 2022, 12:16 PM


Recording Academy PNW Chapter members Carol Crawford (L) and Omari Salisbury attend the Member Celebration at Museum of Pop Culture on May 10, 2022 in Seattle, Washington.


Omari Salisbury — CEO of Converge, a media outlet that caught national attention for its coverage of Seattle-area protests following the murder of George Floyd — is stepping down from hosting the company’s flagship Morning Update Show.

“This gives me an opportunity to kind of step back … to reinforce our existing shows and work with them. But also, we’re spreading our footprint across the Pacific Northwest and down in Portland … in Spokane and Anchorage, we really want to anchor ourselves as a world-class company in telling the black story across the Pacific Northwest,” Salisbury told KIRO Newsradio.

The flagship news program will continue in the form of The Day with Trae, hosted by the current co-host TraeAnna Holiday. In a blog post detailing his decision to step down, Salisbury described ongoing physical injuries and “mental scars” that he incurred during his coverage of the George Floyd protests.

“I’m exiting stage left, but it’s gonna give me an opportunity to uplift our other additional programming and really get more into news and issues in our community,” Salisbury said. Converge announced Tuesday its partnership with The Vida Agency, a public relations firm that emphasizes its pursuit of amplifying voices of minority communities.

While Converge rose to prominence with its coverage of the George Floyd protests, Salisbury prides Converge’s amplification of issues that affect the black community which extends beyond policing. As an example, he pointed to the difficulty that black-owned businesses can have in securing loans.

As a black-owned business itself, Converge has its own issues with financing, which Salisbury sees as indicative of a systematic problem facing the black community in the Seattle area. That kind of problem is one on which Converge seeks to report.

“KIRO FM, here’s Converge. We’re in our sixth year. We’ve won almost every award there is to win. We’ve been in the black for six years, and we cannot get a loan. Converge can’t even get a $500 credit card,” Salisbury continued.

“Imagine now the issue that Converge has — a black-owned business magnified by so many other black-owned businesses who don’t have any access. You see what I’m saying?”

The CEO and journalist addressed disproportionate levels of homeownership in the Seattle area as an example of an issue that’s underserved in the media at large.

“I would say that a lot of times in media, they sum up all black people’s issues around police. And two years ago, before the protests, there was a white income gap between black people and white people, and homeownership was in decline. We do ourselves a disservice if we bottle up all the issues that have impacted black people around one policy, There are larger issues that should be discussed,” Salisbury added.

Listen to Seattle’s Morning News weekday mornings from 5 – 9 a.m. on KIRO Newsradio, 97.3 FM. Subscribe to the podcast here.

Dave Ross on KIRO Newsradio 97.3 FM
  • listen to dave rossTune in to KIRO Newsradio weekdays at 5am for Dave Ross on Seattle's Morning News.

Dave's Commentary

Dave Ross

Irs debt ceiling...

Dave Ross

Ross: IRS has new no-pursuit policy with debt ceiling deal

This debt ceiling deal means the IRS will have to adopt a no-pursuit policy. It means the highway is clear, and all the lights are green.

12 hours ago

book ban...

Dave Ross

Ross: Can anybody really ban a book?

For all the talk about a book ban, Dave Ross explains why he's never had any trouble getting any book he wants.

1 day ago

baby branding...

Dave Ross

Ross: Maybe more Americans should consider baby branding

According to Bloomberg, some anxious American and European parents have been hiring branding consultants to name their baby.

5 days ago

ross graffiti...

Dave Ross

Ross: This level of graffiti is like defacing the Great Pyramid

Dave Ross: Graffiti on the highways is bad enough, and to have it center stage at the city’s front door is taking tolerance too far.

6 days ago

low income housing homelessness...

Dave Ross

Ross: New Seattle low-income housing costs over $134M to address homelessness

If you’re wondering where you can find that low-income housing in Seattle we keep hearing about – I can give you the address. 

7 days ago

stop debt crisis...

Dave Ross

Ross: Nobody in D.C. is actually going to stop the debt crisis

I think I’m going to have to accept that the debt crisis is just not as big a deal as all the news coverage is making it out to be.

7 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Internet Washington...

Major Internet Upgrade and Expansion Planned This Year in Washington State

Comcast is investing $280 million this year to offer multi-gigabit Internet speeds to more than four million locations.

Compassion International...

Brock Huard and Friends Rally Around The Fight for First Campaign

Professional athletes are teaming up to prevent infant mortality and empower women at risk in communities facing severe poverty.

Emergency Preparedness...

Prepare for the next disaster at the Emergency Preparedness Conference

Being prepared before the next emergency arrives is key to preserving businesses and organizations of many kinds.

SHIBA volunteer...

Volunteer to help people understand their Medicare options!

If you’re retired or getting ready to retire and looking for new ways to stay active, becoming a SHIBA volunteer could be for you!

safety from crime...

As crime increases, our safety measures must too

It's easy to be accused of fearmongering regarding crime, but Seattle residents might have good reason to be concerned for their safety.

Comcast Ready for Business Fund...

Ilona Lohrey | President and CEO, GSBA

GSBA is closing the disparity gap with Ready for Business Fund

GSBA, Comcast, and other partners are working to address disparities in access to financial resources with the Ready for Business fund.

Omari Salisbury ‘exits stage left’ of Converge Media’s flagship show