KTRH-KPRC/Houston host Matt Patrick (second from left) recently met with U.S. Customs and Border Patrol agents on-site at America’s newest detention center in McAllen, TX. Opened to help process the huge inflow of illegal immigrants that are crossing America’s southern border through the Rio Grande Valley, the new facility will house approximately 1,000 detainees. Patrick toured the region all last week and broadcast both his KTRH and KPRC shows live from the border.
In the wake of last week’s abrupt departure of Skip Essick after a seven-year run as PD at KMJ-AM & FM/Fresno, Cumulus Media has named Blake Taylor as Program Director for the Central California News/Talker. Taylor has served as News Director/Assistant PD and morning drive news anchor for KMJ since 2007. Prior to that his radio programming resume includes stints at PD at KERN/Bakersfield and KBTK/Albuquerque. ”Blake Taylor’s news experience, digital savvy and competitive energy make him the perfect PD to bring a new generation of listeners to the legendary KMJ-AM and FM,” said John Dickey, EVP and co-COO of Cumulus. “We’re pleased that Blake continues to grow with Cumulus Media.” For his part Taylor — who’s promotion is effective immediately — added, “I’ve served as News Director at KMJ for almost 7 years now and we’ve experienced some amazing growth during that time. But there are many more opportunities ahead as we continue to grow our audience while maintaining our position as the go-to breaking news station in California’s Central Valley. I look forward to taking on the challenge!”
Clear Channel/San Diego has rebranded Sports/Talker KLSD (those call letters are leftover from the station’s one-time liberal Talk format) as “Xtra 1360″ Fox Sports/San Diego. The return of the”Xtra” brand to the market also harkens back to the pioneering early Sports radio days of south-of-the-border “blaster” XETRA-AM 690, which was SoCal’s first Sports/Talk radio station (now Spanish language talker XEWW). The move will give Premiere Networks syndicated FOX Sports Radio a new home in America’s Finest City, as well as help to align the station’s brand with the separately owned regional FOX Sports San Diego cable service. Live ‘n local talents Dave Palet and Jeff Dotseth now host the appropriately named Dave & Jeff Show (6-9a), followed by FSR’s Jay Mohr Sports and the DirecTV Entertainment produced Dan Patrick Show. Steve Hartmann and Mike Costa then pair-up for Loose Cannons in afternoon drive, followed by the 6pm nightly NFL-focused Chargers Power Hour and Xtra At Night with Judson Richards.
While pictures are often said to be worth 1,000 words, no medium can get you closer to the site of breaking news events more quickly than radio, where a reporter and a microphone is all the equipment needed to put listeners’ ears on the front lines of major news events wherever and whenever in the world they may take place. Reporting for CBS Radio News from eastern Ukraine, where a Malaysia Airlines jet apparently was shot out of the sky, Erin Lyall (left) spoke with a masked member of the pro-Russian separatist forces who are currently in control of the crash scene. Meanwhile, ABC News Radio correspondent Aaron Katersky is also in Ukraine covering unfolding events following the crash of Malaysia Flight 17. That’s the radio news veteran pictured (right) at Maidan Square in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev.
TalkRadio 790 KABC/Los Angeles signs on to become the new radio flagship for the 2014 NHL Stanley Cup Champion L.A. Kings. Cumulus Media-owned KABC will air all Kings’ regular season, playoff and preseason games, with Nick Nickson and Daryl Evans continuing to call the club’s broadcasts for KABC and the Kings Radio Network … Sean Adams will join SportsTalk AM 1300 KVET/Austin next month to host The Adams Theory from 2-6pm weekday afternoons. He’ll also play a prominent role on game day for the flagship station and its coverage of University of Texas Longhorns football. Based in Austin, for the past decade Adams has been a content contributor with ESPN, Yahoo Sports and other print and digital channels … DEPARTMENT OF “DOH!” In response to our story last Friday (7/18) about the new National Radio Hall of Fame exhibit dedicated to WLW/Cincinnati founder Powel Crosley, Jr., former longtime WLW Program Director Darryl Parks (now SVP at Cincinnati-based Simply Money Media) emailed over the weekend to correct one fact we reported about the station’s original transmitter. “It was a 500,000 watt transmitter, not 750,000 watts that powered the original WLW,” writes Parks. “Two 500,000 watt units were built by RCA, GE and Westinghouse. The second was scheduled to be put into WSM/Nashville, but it never went on the air.”
NBC Sports Radio was all over last week’s 25th annual American Century Championship golf tournament, broadcasting many of the network’s shows live from Edgewood and Harrah’s Lake Tahoe. The event, owned and produced by NBC Sports and sponsored by American Century Investments, features some of the biggest celebrities from sports and entertainment teeing off to raise funds for local and national charities. Among the participating celebs were (l-r) NBC Sports Radio host and former NFL quarterback Donovan McNabb, Major League Baseball Hall of Famer Rich “Goose” Gossage, and Under Center With McNabb & Malone co-host Mark Malone.
Hubbard Radio has promoted EVP/COO Drew Horowitz to the new role of President and Chief Operating Officer, reporting to Ginny Morris who will remain Chairman and CEO of the Minnesota-based broadcaster. Horowitz succeeds former company president Bruce Reese who announced earlier this month that he was stepping down from day-to-day involvement, but will remain available as a special consultant to the company. Before joining Hubbard Radio in 2011, Horowitz was EVP/COO of Bonneville International, where his tenure began in 1992. His prior experience also includes leadership positions with Lakeshore Communications, WFYR/Chicago and WUSN/Chicago. “I am honored to have this wonderful opportunity to work more closely with Ginny and to be part of this extraordinary family-owned company,” said Horowitz (pictured). “I’m looking forward to continuing my work with the rest of the leadership team to further Hubbard Radio’s success across our seven nationwide markets.”
Longtime Entercom VP News/Talk Programming and Tech Ops Ken Beck (pictured) is ‘hanging up his headphones’ after some 40+ years in the radio biz. Lots of “high five” posts from friends and family on his Facebook page offered the first news of his departure from the industry, and Ken’s LinkedIn profile now lists him as officially “retired” although there’s been no official confirmation from Entercom of his departure as of this post. Beck first joined the company as Director of News/Talk Programming back in 2000 following early career programming and management stints at WWJ and WXYT/Detroit, KFWB/Los Angeles and KGO/San Francisco. Prior to his most recent corporate role, Beck served as VP/Market Manager for the Entercom/New Orleans cluster, where he spearheaded News/Talker WWL’s coverage efforts in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Friends and industry colleagues can reach out to congratulate Ken on his retirement HERE.
By now you’ve likely seen the video or heard the audio of MSNBC anchor Krystal Ball (pictured) being tastelessly pranked by a Howard Stern fan who called in during the cable news channel’s coverage of the shooting down of a civilian airliner over Ukraine claiming to be a military expert. The more than a little embarrassing incident offers all hosts, show producers and call screeners some stark reminders: 1) Be sure all guests or callers are vetted as much as possible before putting them on the air; 2) Assign someone on the show to always be ready to hit the ‘dump’ button when needed; 3) And most of all — unlike this MSNBC anchor — ACTUALLY LISTEN to what your caller is saying, instead of focusing on what you plan to say next. Watch the whole unprofessional mess unfold HERE. … Fifteen-year Clear Channel/Ashville, SC Operations Manager Jeff Davis adds OM responsibilities for the company’s Greenville market … Following up on our story in yesterday’s (7/17) NTS MediaOnline Today about WEEI/Boston Dennis & Callahan Show sidekick Kirk Minihane: Management at Entercom/Boston says Minihane’s absence from the morning show yesterday and today was due to already planned vacation time, and not as the result of any disciplinary action taken by the company in the wake of controversial comments he made on-air about FOX Sports reporter Erin Andrews earlier this week. Minihane has since publicly apologized for those comments.
United Stations Radio Networks (USRN) inks a deal to handle affiliations, distribution and ad sales for Quick Snaps, an exclusive package of NFL-inspired comedy content hosted by comedian Costaki Economopoulos. A regular on the syndicated Bob & Tom Show, WDVE/Pitttsburgh and other major market radio stations, Economopoulos’ partnership with USRN marks his first foray into network radio … NFL veteran Patrick Mannelly (pictured) is joining the roster at Windy City Sports/Talker 670 The Score (WSCR/Chicago). The just retired Chicago Bears long-snapper will join Hub and Dan Pompei for Bears’ pre-game show duties beginning with the upcoming NFL season, appear on various Score shows throughout the week and post a weekly blog to the CBS Radio outlet’s website … ESPN’s inaugural ESPY Day Benefiting The V Foundation for Cancer Research held on Wednesday (7/16) raised more than $6.5 million in donations. To date, ESPY-related fundraising efforts have raised more than $23.5 million for cancer research.