Salem Media Group will celebrate the upcoming July 4th holiday weekend by launching a new Bay Area News/Talker 860AM The Answer (KTRB/San Francisco). The 50,000 watt AM covers the San Francisco metro, along with the embedded metros of San Jose, Sacramento and Modesto. Salem will operate the station through an LMA entered into with Susan L. Uecker, in her sole capacity as Receiver of the estate of Pappas Radio of California. KTRB will debut with a full slate of Salem Radio Network’s nationally syndicated hosts including Hugh Hewitt, Mike Gallagher, Dennis Prager, Michael Medved, Larry Elder and Steve Deace. “We are thrilled and excited to enter market #4 with a station that reaches the entire metro population,” said Salem Media Group President Dave Santrella. “Just in time for the run-up to the biggest Presidential election of our lifetime, we’re adding the entire lineup of Salem’s outstanding network talk talent.” The launch will make KTRB the second conservative Talk radio outlet — along with Cumulus Media’s crosstown KSFO — to set up shop in what is arguably America’s most liberal city.
Research by the Radio Television Digital News Association (RTDNA) shows newsroom salaries recently posted their biggest gains in years, with radio salaries up 3.1% and TV salaries up 4.8%. After several years of slow or no growth, RTDNA says salaries are starting to increase for news directors, reporters and producers. Among the positions making newsroom gains are Digital Content Managers, as more stations hire specialists to handle web and mobile content. The report also notes salaries at non-commercial stations run about 25% higher than at commercial stations, with the exception of sports anchors and reporters. Starting salaries for newsroom employees with no full-time experience also rose slightly, with starting pay in radio news jobs up an average of $700 over the previous year. See more details from the recent RTDNA Newsroom Salary Survey HERE.
In response to FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler’s circulating a quadrennial media ownership review affecting broadcast ownership regulations, NAB Executive Vice President of Communications Dennis Wharton released a statement on behalf of the broadcasters’ group, characterizing the plan as an indefensible FCC charade. “We’re disappointed that Chairman Wheeler continues to ignore the will of both the courts and Congress by proposing to retain broadcast ownership rules that long ago outlived their usefulness,” said Wharton. “It is shocking that regulators who bless mammoth mergers like AT&T/DirecTV and Charter/Time Warner Cable would still bar common ownership of two TV stations or broadcast and newspaper combinations in a local market. Ultimately, NAB hopes the five-member FCC, Congress or the courts end this indefensible FCC charade, and that meaningful ownership reform is adopted for the benefit of the millions of Americans reliant on free and local broadcasting.” Read a ‘Fact Sheet’ regarding Wheeler’s quadrennial media ownership review HERE.
AdLarge Media and Touchdown Radio announce the 2016 schedule of NCAA college football games that will air this fall on the sports radio network founded and led by former University of Miami football star Gino Torretta. AdLarge Media serves as the exclusive ad sales partner for Touchdown Radio … The NBA Atlanta Hawks have extended their radio rights deal with CBS Radio/Atlanta Sports/Talker 92.9 The Game (WZGC). Steve Holman will be back in the Hawks’ broadcast booth next season for his 32nd year as the team’s radio voice … On Friday (7/1) ESPN New York 98.7FM (WEPN) will present The Ultimate Kickoff Party to mark the beginning of summer. The event (which is open to the public) will be held from 1-7pm (ET) at Martell’s Tiki Bar in Point Pleasant, NJ, featuring station personalities Michael Kay, Don LaGreca, Peter Rosenberg, Alan Hahn and Rick DiPietro, who will be joined by special guests including Yankees’ great Bernie Williams, and Super Bowl champion and former New York Jet Willie Colon … That’s Las Vegas-based GCN syndicated talker Dr. Daliah Wachs pictured above, hanging out with UNLV Men’s Football Coach Tony Sanchez (left) and Men’s Basketball Coach Marvin Menzies (right) during a recent VIP Alumni Appreciation event. Earlier this year Wachs co-created and produced a new ‘roar’ song/chant for UNLV sports fans entitled Rebel Up.
Westwood One News correspondent Steve Kastenbaum (center) was dispatched to cover last weekend’s Gay Pride Parade in New York City, where he caught up with Carlos Menchaca and Ritchie Torres — the first openly gay New York City Council members, from Brooklyn and the Bronx. Menchaca is also the first Mexican-American elected to the Council.
WGN/Chicago announces another major contract renewal, with word that longtime Windy City radio personality Steve Cochran will continue to wake-up Chicagoans for at least the next four years. During his show this morning, Cochran thanked fans for “all the texts regarding me signing a new four-year contract here at WGN, which I’m very excited about. I’m blessed to be here — and I will continue to be here — every morning through 2020. This is the job I’ve always wanted and I’m lucky to have it!” Cochran, who had called WGN home for a decade when previous station management abruptly dumped him in 2010, returned to the station after a stint at crosstown WIND when a new management team, under market veteran Jimmy De Castro, took over in 2013. Cochran’s extension is the third major deal announced by WGN in the past few weeks. The Tribune Media News/Talker has also recently signed long-term renewals with afternoon host Roe Conn and VP/Content and Programming Todd Manley. (photo:WGN.com)
Melissa Harrison is joining Mike Rogers and Scott Sams as co-anchor of KRLD/Dallas’ Morning News. A veteran journalist, Harrison (left) has worked as a television news reporter in New York and Dallas-Fort Worth as well as Birmingham, AL, Jackson, MS, Waco and Abilene. She was most recently a freelance reporter for crosstown KXAS-TV. “Melissa’s extensive journalism experience will further strengthen the award-winning KRLD news team,” said Paul Mann, Director of News and Programming for the CBS Radio-owned News and Talk outlet. “As with co-anchors Mike Rogers and Scott Sams, Melissa’s roots run deep in North Texas, and she is passionate about our community.” Harrison will make her KRLD wake-up debut on Friday (7/1).
NTS MediaOnline Today sends a shout-out to the crew at Alpha Media News/Talker KSAL/Salina, KS on being named ‘Favorite Station’ and the home of the city’s ‘Favorite Radio Host’ — Clarke Sanders — in the 2016 Salina Journal Readers’ Choice Awards. Market Manager Bob Protzman said the honors “speak to the ties KSAL has to central Kansas,” and also “shows AM radio is alive and well — all it takes is quality, local programming.” … iHeartMedia promotes Morgan Huelsman to Digital Program Director for the company’s Nashville cluster, including News/Talk WLAC. Huelsman (left)) segues to Music City from her current post as Digital Content Director for iHM’s Wichita stations … Hot off the success of his recently held 2016 HIVIO event in Los Angeles, researcher and media strategist Mark Ramsey has a new post asking broadcasters, “Where Are Your Stars, Radio?” Ramsey poses the pointed question in light of the recent launch of Facebook Live, noting that Facebook “is not counting on non-stars to evolve into stars, they’re counting on stars to attract audiences.” Read the full post HERE.
Condolences: To the family friends and colleagues of 14-year 102.9 Newsradio KARN/Little Rock anchor/reporter Donna Kelley, who died at her home over the weekend (6/26). Kelley, 66, reportedly died of natural causes. Funeral arrangements are pending. Market Manager Keith Liesmann called Kelley (right) “an outstanding reporter/anchor who served with the highest degree of journalistic integrity” and “a friend to everyone she worked with.” It’s the second death to be mourned in the newsroom at the Cumulus Media News/Talker in recent weeks. Morning anchor Gary DiGiuseppe was killed last month when he was hit head-on by a wrong-way driver while on his way to work.
Veteran news reporter/anchors Sherry Wright and Brandon Dickson join the team of reporters at Envision Virtual Services News Reports. The Envision Networks-syndicated news service provides custom local news reports for affiliates, anchored by remote reporters … KPQ/Wenatchee, WA adds Envision’s syndicated John and Leah Show — hosted by John Ziegler and Leah Brandon — to the Cherry Creek Radio News/Talker’s Sunday night lineup … BlogTalkRadio debuts the Wolfpack Ninjas podcast hosted by Dr. Noah Kaufman. Billed in a release as “the authoritative source for all things American Ninja Warrior,” the new podcast features stars from the show and other guests … That’s ABC Radio Entertainment contributor Kim Serafin (pictured) as she reported live from Hollywood for the network at the recent premiere of Disney’s new film, The BFG.
That’s Into the Wild’s Jack Hanna (left) with Gun Talk host Tom Gresham enjoying some time together at the Professional Outdoor Media Association’s recently held annual conference in Montana. Hanna was a speaker at the event, where he talked about the role of hunting in conservation efforts, and why hunters are the “original conservationists.” Gun Talk with Tom Gresham airs on a reported 200+ stations nationwide and is syndicated by Talk Shows USA.