The morning voice of local radio station WRNR FM 103.1 has been silenced. DJ Alex Cortright's last day on the air was Monday.
"They let me go based on budgetary things," Cortright said. "The station had not done as well as it had last year. They decided to cut costs and started with the morning man."
He had been employed by the station for nearly 15 years. He was terminated Monday, immediately after he finished his morning show.
"It was rather unceremonious," Cortright said.
Station officials, he said, told him his dismissal was "nothing personal."
Cortright's name and photo have been removed from the station's website.
His weekday 6 to 10 a.m. and Sunday 10 a.m to 3 p.m. time slots are being filled, temporarily, by fellow DJ Rob Timm.
Michael Hughes, the station's vice president and general manager, stated WRNR "is doing fine." He declined to discuss specifics of Cortright's termination.
"We have to constantly strive to be better, serving our listeners, community and advertisers," Hughes said. "Sometimes, that means making unpopular decisions. Alex has served our station and community well. We wish him the best."
Steve Samaras, owner of Zachary's, a downtown jewelry shop, said he was shocked by the dismissal of Cortright, who was active in the community as the emcee of many fundraising events for nonprofit organizations.
"He has that voice that resonates over the airwaves that you just can't replicate," Samaras said. "He'll be missed from WRNR. Whenever I came to work, he was on during drive time."
Samaras said that when the station was still on Main Street, he'd see Cortright passing his shop daily en route to a nearby coffee shop.
Cortright, an Edgewater resident, said he'll take time to regoup and consider his options.
"I sure love broadcasting and sharing that time with the community," he said. "I love Annapolis and I'll miss it. But, life is change and I have a positive outlook for what's to come."