Talk And Media News Notes
July 20, 2015

NTS MediaOnline Today sends out ‘get well soon’ wishes to WABC/New York host Curtis Sliwa, who was rushed to NYU Medical Center over the weekend after suffering a hernia and groin pull. That’s Sliwa and his Curtis and Kuby co-host Ron Kuby pictured, as Ron prepares to take his valium-impaired on-air sparring partner for “a nice, little walk” in the hospital’s stairwell … iHeartMedia/New Hampshire is partnering with the New Hampshire Union Leader to present a Voters First Republican Presidential Candidates Forum on August 3rd at St. Anselms College in Manchester. The 90-minute event, moderated by iHeartMedia’s New Hampshire Today host Jack Heath, will air live on all affiliates of the regional show and nationwide on iHeartRadio, and will be televised on C-Span … Happy Trails to Don Barrett, founder and publisher of LARadio.com, as he opts to pull the plug on the SoCal radio news website after a nearly two decade run … Condolences: To the family, friends and many fans of legendary Buffalo Bills play-by-play voice Van Miller, who has died at age 87. The Buffalo News offers a lengthy feature on Miller’s colorful 55+ year broadcast career HERE.

WGN’s Digilio Making Life And Show Changes
July 20, 2015

WGN/Chicago overnighter Nick Digilio (left) returned to the mic today to explain his month-long absence from the Tribune News/Talker. Saying he’d been suffering from on-and-off stomach issues for some time, the problem became so severe last month that his show producer forced Digilio to go to local hospital emergency room where he was admitted to the facility’s Intermediate Care Unit — just a step below Intensive Care. “Those of you who listen to this show regularly know that I enjoy adult beverages on a regular basis,” the late night host told listeners. “The main problem was I was not eating much due to the stomach thing, yet I continued to imbibe and the result was just not good. It was a stupid thing – it was my own fault. At one point I didn’t eat for seven days straight – and I’d go home after doing the show and have drinks – sometimes a few too many.” He then said he’s not had a drink since June 11th — some two weeks prior to be hospitalized — and proclaimed, “And that was the last drink I will ever have. I am unbelievably thankful to be back. The changes I’m making in my life are good.” Among those changes, Nick said he is dropping ‘Drunks In The News,’ a popular long-running feature of his show that he now believes may have hurt those who needed help instead of ridicule. Listen to more of Nick’s very personal monologue from his broadcast earlier today HERE.

Trump Unleashed On WABC/New York
July 17, 2015

In an interview this week with WABC/New York weekend host Rita Cosby (right), business mogul, media star and GOP presidential hopeful Donald Trump continued to make waves and news, answering questions from the talk host on a wide variety of topics. On whether or not Bill Cosby should be stripped of the U.S. Medal of Freedom the comedian was given in 2002 Trump said, “He’s guilty as hell. I don’t know if you can take a medal away or not — it’s not the most important thing — but I would say, if you can, take it away.” What would Trump say to Iran’s leader about the recently announced nuke deal? “I’d say ‘Congratulations, you did a great job,'” he told Rita. Also, asked to comment on the recent public dress-down of CBS News correspondent Major Garrett by President Obama for asking a question about Americans still being held in Iran Trump said, “I guarantee you if I was involved, they would have let ‘em out.” Hear the full interview this Sunday at 6am (ET) and ‘On-Demand’ @ www.wabcradio.com.

Larry Elder Returns To L.A. Radio
July 16, 2015

Salem Media Group/Los Angeles News/Talker AM 870 The Answer (KRLA) has teamed with CRN Digital Talk Radio to bring SoCal Talk radio legend Larry Elder back to daily duty. KRLA will air The Larry Elder Show Monday-Friday evenings, from 9-11pm (PT) beginning August 3rd. The move to KRLA marks a return to L.A. broadcast radio for ‘The Sage From South Central,’ who previously served two tours of on-air duty at crosstown KABC — the first from 1994-2008 and the second from 2010-2014. “Larry is a popular, in-demand personality throughout the country, and especially in Los Angeles,” said CRN Digital Talk Radio President/CEO Michael Horn. “We’re delighted to team up with AM 870 The Answer and satisfy the overwhelming demand from Larry’s legion of fans. The ‘Elder-ado’s’ will be excited to hear that Larry is back on the air in L.A. where he belongs!”

WTMJ Teams With Milwaukee Biz Journal
July 16, 2015

WTMJ/Milwaukee and the Milwaukee Business Journal have launched an exclusive radio content partnership to provide team coverage on business news and information. WTMJ will air Milwaukee Business Journal Updates eight times each weekday, featuring the latest on business news in southeastern Wisconsin. In addition, Milwaukee Business Journal reporters will join WTMJ hosts for discussions of the biggest stories affecting the Wisconsin business community. The now official partners have been working together informally for the past several years. “WTMJ is committed to being Wisconsin’s radio station for business news,” said Tom Langmyer, VP/GM of the Scripps-owned News/Talker. “The Milwaukee Business Journal is the premier source for up-to-the-minute business information, and now our listeners will enjoy the Business Journal’s exclusive information for greater depth on stories that are important to them.”

Meghan McCain Takes On ‘America Now’
July 15, 2015

National media personality, New York Times best-selling author and political columnist Meghan McCain has joined Premiere Networks as host of America Now. McCain (left) — daughter of U.S. Senator John McCain (R-AZ) — will debut as host of the daily (6-9pm/ET) News/Talk show that currently airs on a reported 100 affiliates nationwide. “Meghan is smart, enthusiastic and outspoken, and we’re excited to have her join our roster of industry-leading programs reaching diverse audiences across America,” said Premiere Networks President Julie Talbott. “As Talk radio continues to connect with and engage millions of people across multiple platforms, we’re confident Meghan’s unique perspective and experience in politics will resonate with America Now’s national audience and create powerful marketing opportunities for our partners.” Commenting into her new radio venture, Meghan said, “I can’t wait to engage listeners across the country as we shine a spotlight on the stories and issues that affect us all. Creating a dialogue to inform, inspire and entertain people is what’s always driven me, and hosting America Now is an exciting opportunity to help drive the national conversation. I’m excited to be joining a network with such an amazing lineup of hosts.”

Justice Jumps / Ross Rises / Beck Banks Big Bucks
July 15, 2015

NTS MediaOnline Today has confirmed reports that 104.1 KQTH/Tucson* morning host Jon Justice has been named interim Program Director for the now E.W. Scripps-owned News/Talk FM. Tucson Weekly’s John Schuster was the first to report that Justice (right), who will also continue to host his popular daily talk show, had been given the station’s programming reins. The Program Director’s chair at KQTH and sister Sports/Talker KFFN* has been open since Bill White departed the cluster earlier this year to takeover as PD at iHeart Media News/Talkers KFBK-KSTE/Sacramento. (*Editor’s Note: An earlier post of this story listed incorrect call letters for KQTH and KFFN.)

Cumulus Media/Dallas-Ft. Worth has promoted veteran journalist and midday news anchor Freda Ross to News Director for News/Talkers WBAP and KLIF. Ross (left) is currently Assistant News Director for both stations, a role she’s held at WBAP since 1994 and at KLIF since the station was acquired by Cumulus. Prior to joining WBAP some 20 years ago, the multi-award winning journalist served as News Director for Texas A&M University public radio station KETR. “Freda has earned the respect of her colleagues and is a long-standing influential leader in the WBAP/KLIF News Department,” said WBAP-KLIF Ops Manager Tyler Cox. “She was the natural choice for this promotion to News Director.” Ross assumes a chair recently vacated by Rick Hadley, who left the stations after a 10-year run as News Director to take a new job outside of the radio industry.

Forbes associate editor Abram Brown posts an analysis of Five Things You Need  To Know About Forbes’ Highest-Earning Radio Hosts, in which he cites Premiere Networks syndicated Talk radio host and TheBlaze founder Glenn Beck as, “Hands down the most widely diversified among the radio stars.” According to Brown, “As a majority owner of media conglomerate Mercury Radio Arts, Beck (left) has accumulated a real fortune in a way his radio peers and other celebrities haven’t.” Other radio personalities noted in the feature include Howard Stern, Ryan Seacrest and Rush Limbaugh. Read more HERE.

KCMO & KC Cop Help Desperate Mother
July 14, 2015

KCMO/Kansas City spearheaded a donation drive over the past weekend to raise money for a local mother who had resorted to shoplifting to provide for her daughters, a family that includes two-year old twins, and their 4, 12 and 15-year old sisters. The story of the mom’s desperate circumstances went viral after local police officer Mark Engravalle, who was called on to arrest the woman for shoplifting diapers and wipes for her twins at a local Wal-Mart, instead opted to pay for the purchase out of his own pocket. He then also bought all the girls new shoes. Engravalle and a very grateful Sarah Robinson, the mom who was caught shoplifting, were both on hand for the KCMO donation drive that raised cash and collected diapers, baby wipes, clothing, blankets, food, toiletries and other items. That’s KCMO’s Rob Carson (left), pictured with ‘Good Samaritan’ Officer Engravalle at the Cumulus Media News/Talker’s event. Read more HERE.

Radio Newsroom Salaries Dip
July 13, 2015

Annual research by the Radio Television Digital News Association (RTDNA) shows television newsroom salaries made gains in the past year (up 1.9%), while radio newsroom salaries slipped — off an average of 4.1% from year-to-year. RTDNA’s annual salary survey also showed a growing gap between ‘reporters’ and ‘multimedia journalists’ (MMJs), with MMJs being paid significantly less than reporters in all market sizes. Overall, salaries have been pacing at or above inflation for most positions, but news producers and web-related positions have not. Starting pay for entry-level employees in radio and television rose slightly in the past year, with MMJs and news producers being the most frequent new hires in television, while reporters and web personnel were the most common new hires in radio. Get more data and analysis of this year’s RTDNA survey HERE.

Limbaugh Spokesman Prevails In Legal Action
July 13, 2015

Rush Limbaugh Show spokesperson Brian Glicklich reports that a California Superior Court judge has ordered an Orange County woman to pay Glicklich (right) nearly $10,000 for what he characterized as attempts to interfere with his work through “harassing litigation.” According to Glicklich, Carol Kernahan Wallin is a leader of a group of activists who repeatedly contact advertisers of Rush Limbaugh’s Talk radio show on social media, in an effort to intimidate them into discontinuing advertising. A suit filed by Wallin, seeking a restraining order against Glicklich, was previously dismissed by the Court and Glicklich subsequently filed a motion for recovery of his attorney’s fees based on California’s Anti-SLAPP law against nuisance suits. “This judgement represents the truth that #stoprush is an effort at speech suppression through harassment and intimidation,” Glicklich told NTS MediaOnline Today. “I’m grateful to the Court, and hope that all of us who value unfettered speech can join together to oppose those who would try to limit it.”