After 5+ years as the Executive Producer of talk host Lars Larson’s daily KXL/Portland and Compass Media Networks nationally syndicated shows, Tony King told staffers this week that he’s decided to “move on” to new opportunities, effective November 4th. Lars Larson Show Associate Producer Carl Sundberg is promoted to EP, as a result … Major League Baseball Hall of Famer, Ryne Sandberg (right) will join 670 The Score (WSCR/Chicago) for the remainder of the MLB playoffs and will co-host the CBS Radio Sports/Talker’s post-game show with Mark Grote. “Ryno is a fan favorite and will add great insight to the games,” said Ops Director Mitch Rosen. 670 The Score is the radio flagship for Cubs baseball … SiriusXM’s Comedy Greats channel will pay tribute to the upcoming 2016 presidential election with a special week of programming. The channel will be rebranded as ‘F* Politics’ starting Monday (10/17), offering subscribers a full week of “comedic programming to help ease the nation’s tensions.”
The annual National Radio Hall of Fame induction ceremony is just a month away, when the Class of 2016 will be saluted and enshrined for all time for their lifetime contributions to the broadcast industry. This year’s inductees from Talk radio include the legendary late South Florida host, Neil Rogers, and WW One syndicated talker Michael Savage. They’ll be joined by eight additional honorees at this year’s ceremonies, hosted by WCBS-FM/New York morning host and 2006 NRHOF inductee Scott Shannon. Tickets are on sale now for the the annual black-tie optional show that will be held at 6pm on November 17th, at the Museum of Broadcast Communications in Chicago — the permanent home of the National Radio Hall of Fame. Make a plan to take a few minutes this weekend to reserve your seat (or a table or two) to attend one of radio’s most anticipated yearly gatherings HERE.
Crain’s Chicago Business reports that a Chicago Democrat has filed a complaint with the Federal Elections Committee against Dan Proft (right) and others, charging that several start-up newspapers owned by the WIND (AM 560 The Answer)/Chicago morning co-host should not receive a press exemption from campaign finance laws, saying they are partisan publications and not independent newspapers. Crain’s reports that Proft has called the FEC complaint, “Factually incorrect in every possible way.” Read the full story HERE … RCS and Marketron partner to forge a link between automation playback and advertising revenue and data by building an open interface that will allow real time reconciliation and substitution of any advertising content on a broadcast station … Emmis Communications has announced agreements to sell its Terre Haute, IN stations. WTHI-FM and the intellectual property of WWVR-FM will be acquired by Midwest Communications for $4.3 million, while WFNF-AM, WFNB-FM and WWVR (other than the IP for that station) will go to DLC Media for $900,000. DLC will also acquire WDKE/Terre Haute from Midwest Communications which will divest the station as part of the three-tiered transaction.
ESPN Radio is in the middle of broadcasting the network’s 19th consecutive season of Major League Baseball’s postseason play, that will culminate with the World Series beginning October 25th. Sunday Night Baseball play-by-play commentator Dan Shulman and analyst Aaron Boone will have the call of the 112th MLB World Series, with Chris Singleton providing pre and post-game analysis and interviews … Envision Networks syndicated Westar Music Library has expanded its growing collection of music beds to also include over 248,000 sound effects … KWAM-AM/Memphis, WXME/Montecello, ME, and WMXF/Waynesville, NC add Free Talk Live, the nightly talk show syndicated via Talk Shows USA … Love was in the air during a recent edition of Greater Media/Charlotte’s syndicated Bob & Sheri Show, where listener and fan of the show Dalton Grigston surprised his girlfriend of five years, Tiffany, with a live, on-air proposal (pictured). We’re happy to report Tiffany said yes, offering yet another example of radio’s power to bring people together!
By now, most of the world has seen the infamous video tape of radio and TV personality Billy Bush and GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump yucking it up and making lewd comments about women while preparing for an interview with the TV show Access Hollywood. And while NBC has officially suspended Bush from his post at the Today show, rumors abound that the suspension will ultimately end-up with Bush getting pink-slipped. Longtime talent and management advisor Walter Sabo, who knows a thing or two about controversial personalities and nervous management, pens an op-ed in support of Bush, who has career roots are in radio, including hosting a national radio show syndicated by Westwood One from 2008-2014. Sabo (pictured) argues Billy should absolutely not be fired over the incident and explains why. Stating right upfront he doesn’t “condone, bless or respect one word that was spoken in that now famous Bush/Trump exchange,” Sabo continues, “Billy Bush was doing his job. He was acting as a host and interviewer …. And he was not alone that fateful day …. Fire Billy, and you better fire everyone working on that show who heard the off-air chatter.” Read Sabo’s full post and offer your comments on his take on the situation HERE.
Cumulus Media stockholders today approved the company’s 1-for-8 reverse stock split proposal, as the broadcaster strives to preserve its threatened NASDAQ listing. The reverse stock split takes effect today at 5pm (ET). The StreetInsider has more details HERE … Larry Wert, longtime Windy City broadcaster and current President of Tribune Broadcast Media, has been elected interim chairman of the Chicago-based Museum of Broadcast Communications. Chicago media reporter Robert Feder has the story HERE … WTMJ/Milwaukee has announced plans to present the holiday classic, It’s a Wonderful Life, as the E.W. Scripps-owned News/Talker’s annual holiday radio show. Starring a cast including the voices of WTMJ and other local participants, the yearly show will be presented on November 29th at Milwaukee’s Turner Hall. The live radio play will be recorded in front of a studio audience, then will be replayed on WTMJ throughout the upcoming Christmas season … A just-posted edition of the RAB’s new Radio On Main Street podcast features RAB President/CEO Erica Farber chatting with LifeLock VP/Paid Media Lina Calia and the company’s Radio Consultant Kathryn Kercher, to learn about how the identity theft protection company partners with both national and local radio to drive awareness, build trust and bring in new customers. Listen HERE.
The Radio Television Digital News Association (RTDNA) presented the 2016 National Edward R. Murrow Awards at its annual awards gala held last night in New York City. For the third year in a row, ABC News Radio and ABC News (television) both won Murrow’s for ‘Overall Excellence’ at the network level. Minnesota Public Radio nabbed the ‘Overall Excellence’ award in the Large Market radio category, while News/Talker WDEL-AM&FM/Wilmington, DE took home honors in that category for Small Market radio. Presenters for the event, that drew more than 400 attendees to NYC’s Gotham Hall, included NBC’s Lester Holt, ABC News Radio’s Aaron Katersky, NPR’s Michael Oreskes, ABC’s Byron Pitts, CBS’ Elaine Quijano and RTDNA Chairman Vincent Duffy. Pictured above is ABC News Radio VP/GM Steve Jones accepting the Disney-owned network’s ‘Overall Excellence’ award last night, where he said in part, “It’s an honor to be recognized by our peers for the excellence of our work. We are deeply appreciative of the support we receive every day under James Goldston’s leadership and from all of our ABC colleagues.”
See the full list of 2016 National Murrow Award winners HERE.
Joanna Martens has joined the team at WestStar Multimedia Entertainment. Martens (right) will handle affiliate relations for the nationally syndicated Kim Komando Show, and other content offerings from WestStar Multimedia. Martens was most recently in charge of affiliate relations at NBCUniversal’s digital multicast network, Cozi TV in New York City. Her resume also includes a stint as a Production Services Coordinator for NBCUniversal in Burbank. Commenting on her company’s newest team member, ‘Digital Goddess’ and WestStar exec Kim Komando said, “Joanna has quickly demonstrated her skills as an effective communicator and facilitator. She hit the ground running and shows no signs of slowing down. She’s a perfect fit.” Martens returns Komando’s complimentary words saying, “Kim’s a trailblazer and innovator. Her dedication to excellence is demonstrated in developing smart, relevant content every day for her listeners.” Congratulate Joanna on her new gig HERE.
Media Monitors has released it’s latest update on presidential campaign spending at radio. In the period from September 30th to October 9th, Democrat Hillary Clinton aired 15,581 radio ads, vs. 402 commercials that aired for GOP hopeful Donald Trump and 177 ads for Libertarian Gary Johnson. More than 2,600 “against” ads aired targeting Trump during the same period, vs. 116 “against” ads that targeted Clinton … iHeartMedia/Charlotte names Michele Kiefer (pictured) General Sales Manager for the five station North Carolina cluster. Kiefer is a 22-year media veteran who previously served as Senior Vice President of Sales for iHM/Indianapolis. Her resume also includes a stint as Director of Sales for Cumulus Media’s Indianapolis station cluster … WDAE/Tampa local morning sports duo Rick & Tom — Rick Stroud and Tom Jones — have exited the iHeartMedia-owned Sports/Talker, replaced by ESPN Radio’s syndicated Mike & Mike show. Stroud and Jones had hosted wake-ups on the station for the past several years.
Hurricane Matthew blew up the coastlines of Florida, Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina over the weekend, leaving at least 21 dead here in the U.S., along with washed out roads, widespread property damage, major flooding, widespread power outages and mandatory evacuations for millions. After days of round-the-clock emergency preparedness broadcasts, local radio across the region is now moving quickly to shift their efforts to providing emergency clean-up and recovery effort information, as Matthew is downgraded to a post-tropical storm and turns eastward back out into the Atlantic. That’s ABC News Radio correspondent Alex Stone pictured above, reporting from Charleston, SC. As always, when a big storm like Matthew has finally passed, the effort to get things back to normal for residents — supported by much-needed information from their local radio stations — will continue for many weeks and months to come.