End of the Rhodes: Firebrand liberal Talk radio host Randi Rhodes (pictured) has opted to end her Premiere Networks nationally syndicated show. A brief statement from the network reads: “Randi Rhodes has decided to end her national radio program. We’ve had a successful partnership with Randi for several years, and we wish her all the best for the future. Premiere Networks will conclude syndication and production of The Randi Rhodes Show on May 16th.” … TheBlaze Radio Network host Buck Sexton got to sit behind the “Golden EIB Microphone” today, as the former CIA officer and NYPD intelligence analyst turned talk host got to sit in for Rush Limbaugh on his Premiere Networks-syndicated show. Along with his daily Talk radio show, Sexton also co-hosts Real News on TheBlaze TV … Variety Senior TV editor Brian Steinberg reports that FOX News Channel will launch a new noon-1pm (ET) show on April 28th entitled Outnumbered. The one-hour program will feature a rotating crew of four female hosts and one male examining the top news of the hour. Read the full story HERE.
In the May issue of Salem Communications-owned Townhall Magazine (which hits newsstands May 1st), Salem Radio Network VP/News and Talk Programming Tom Tradup asks that provocative question, and also explores how conservative Talk radio might do a better job at growing its fan base by building long-term engagement with minority communities. Tradup notes that while “liberal persons of color abound in national Talk media, black conservatives are still a fairly rare commodity on Talk radio.” Among those contributing to the feature is SiriusXM Patriot channel host David Webb, who said he believes one thing Talk radio hosts could do in order to better attract minorities with a conservative lean is to focus on content, not race. “Talk about keeping a family structure, not just social values,” Webb (pictured) told Tradup. “And talk about blended families to counter the single parent crisis, education, reducing crime in inner cities, free enterprise, employment and bringing back companies to provide jobs.” Get an online preview of the feature now at Townhall.com.
Fifteen-year Talk radio veteran Michael Graham has been tapped to host a new daily talk show on Cumulus Media/Atlanta-owned All News 106.7 (WYAY-FM). Most recently heard via the New England Talk Network and Boston Herald Radio, Graham previously had a lengthy run on Greater Media/Boston’s now defunct FM talker WTKK. With a nod to his long-suffering campaign to get the Democratic governor of Massachusetts to come on his radio show, the conservative talker announced his departure with one final poke at the Guv saying, “Governor Patrick, it’s safe to turn your radio back on. After literally eight years of evading my every request for on-air conversation, you can finally relax. I’m leaving Boston radio for warmer climes. Cumulus Media has made me an offer I couldn’t refuse.” Recalling his years as a political conservative living in the famously liberal-leaning city and state, Graham added he leaves New England with no ill-will saying, “Massachusetts, despite your politics, you’re really good people.” Read Graham’s full announcement of his pending move to Atlanta HERE.
The Hollywood Reporter (THR) has just released its list of 2014′s 35 Most Powerful People in New York Media. Among the names included on this year’s roster is FOX News Channel personality and Premiere Networks nationally syndicated Talk radio host Sean Hannity (pictured). In their notes on “why he matters,” THR reports that since the move of Sean’s nightly TV show from 9pm to 10pm (ET) last fall, “His ratings are 27 percent higher in the key 25-to-45 demo than previous time-slot occupant On the Record With Greta Van Susteren, and the married father of two has a bigger audience than CNN’s Anderson Cooper and MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell combined.” Reporting that Hannity is the fourth-highest-rated cable news program in the demo, the magazine also takes note of Sean’s considerable Talk radio power, reporting that his daily radio show “attracts an estimated 13 million listeners a week, which makes him the second-most-popular political talker in the medium, trailing only Rush Limbaugh.” See this year’s complete list of THR’s most powerful NY media types HERE.
In his daily newsletter today Glenn Beck reveals that he is expanding his media footprint yet again, with plans for a new film division at Mercury Radio Arts. That’s the parent company behind Beck’s daily Talk radio show (syndicated by Premiere Networks), as well as his Dallas and New York-based digital audio and television media venture, TheBlaze. Beck has spent the past year renovating The Studios at Las Colinas in Irving, TX since he purchased the movie and TV production facility last June. Find out more about plans for at least three theatrical films that the ever-busy Beck currently has in the works HERE.
Don Bouloukos, Senior Vice President and Market Manager for CBS Radio/New York, has announced he’ll retire next month after more than four decades in the industry. CBS Radio EVP/Operations Scott Herman will expand his role, assuming Bouloukos’ NY market responsibilities along with his current duties. Bouloukos (pictured) joined CBS in 1998 when the company acquired American Radio Systems (ARS), where he was then co-COO. Prior to that, he served as President of Capital Cities/ABC Radio Stations from 1986-96. Bouloukos began his radio career as an account executive at then ABC Radio-owned WLS-AM/Chicago. “It’s never an easy decision to leave an industry you love and a company and cluster of stations that have been such an important part of your life,” said Bouloukos. “But after 41 years, it is time. My only regret is that I am not 21 years old and starting all over again.” Among the stations in CBS Radio’s NYC cluster are all-newsers WCBS-AM and WINS, and pioneering Sports/Talker WFAN-AM & FM.
In the many years that your NTS MediaOnline Today editor has been covering News/Talk radio, few stations in any size market can lay claim to making a stronger commitment to local radio news than heritage News/Talker WJBC/Bloomington, IL. With a seven member news team, including an agribusiness reporter, WJBC proudly boasts it produces more around-the-clock local news coverage “than any other station in Central Illinois.” Over the years, the Illinois Associated Press has honored the station with awards for Outstanding News Operation, Best Reporter, Best Newscast and Best Spot News. This week, the now Cumulus Media-owned outlet added to its trophy case as it was named Station of the Year at the Illinois AP’s Broadcast Excellence Awards ceremony held in Peoria. Pictured here is the crew that made it all possible including (l-r): sports writer Bryan Bloodworth; reporter/anchor Adam Studzinski; News Director Stephanie Pawlowski; reporter/anchor and Sports Director Eric Stock; reporter/anchor Zac Dietmeier; and WJBC Ops Manager Dan Westhoff.
KOIL/Omaha talk host Tom Becka was among those who “took the plunge” yesterday (4/14) as part of a fundraiser for Landon Shaw, a Missouri boy with cancer who has inspired Facebook fundraising challenges. Becka (pictured) was joined by several fellow NRG Radio/Omaha personalities and local politicians, as they all “took a dive” in the balmy 50 degree waters of Lake Manawa in Council Bluffs, IA. Read more HERE … FM News 101 KXL-FM/Portland welcomes new afternoon news co-anchor Val Stouffer. Stouffer, who has had previous news gigs at WLS and WMAQ in Chicago, as well as at both KIRO and KOMO in Seattle, joins current PM drive news anchor Dan Mitchinson in the Alpha Broadcasting News/Talker’s 4-7pm weekday slot … Singer and songwriter Paul Simon will receive the 2014 Service to America Leadership Award from the NAB Education Foundation (NABEF) for his long-time commitment to providing healthcare to underserved children across the country. Simon will receive the award at NABEF’s annual Celebration of Service to America Gala on June 17th.
Ed Kiernan, Vice President and General Manager, since 1991, of WBAL-AM and WIYY-FM, the Hearst Television Inc. radio stations serving Baltimore, will retire this summer, capping over four decades in radio. Under Kiernan’s leadership, WBAL-AM 1090 has been the radio home of Major League Baseball’s Baltimore’s Orioles, the NFL Baltimore Ravens and Navy football, and has been Baltimore’s longtime radio News/Talk leader. A regional radio powerhouse, WBAL-AM has won multiple “Best News Operation” honors from the AP, Edward R. Murrow Awards from the Radio Television Digital News Association, an NABEF Service to Children Radio Award and National Headliner Awards from the Press Club of Atlantic City. Prior to joining WBAL, Kiernan (pictured) spent 17 years at CBS Radio, where he was Vice President and General Manager of All-News WCBS-AM/New York, as well as VP/GM of CBS Radio Reps. He also held a variety of sales and management positions within CBS Radio. Hearst is expected to name who will fill Kiernan’s considerable shoes in Baltimore in the weeks ahead. Email your best wishes to Ed on his pending retirement HERE.
Legendary New York City radio personality and bonafide ‘radio royalty’ John Gambling returned to Gotham City’s airwaves today at his new home, AM 970 The Answer (WNYM/New York). Gambling (pictured) joked that “apparently there is a limit to how much golf one man can play” as he comfortably slid into his new weekday 11am-1pm slot on Salem Communications’ NYC News/Talk flagship less than four months after announcing his retirement from crosstown Clear Channel News/Talker WOR at the end of last year … Cumulus Media/New York, including News/Talk WABC, will be part of a combined cluster event, “The Best of The Tri-State,” on April 22nd. The evening event will showcase the best of everything across the region as voted by listeners to WABC, WPLJ and Nash FM 94.7 … The Southern California Broadcasters Association has announced a new outreach program, designed to reach the next generation of broadcasters through a series of speaking engagements by SCBA President Thom Callahan. The appearances will take place at broadcast and communications classes at colleges and universities throughout Southern California and, via Skype, in London, England. Asked about the goals of the speaking series Callahan said, “Ultimately, the SCBA wants to attract the best and the brightest to our robust and growing radio industry, so we are making our case directly to students before they choose their career path.”