Mike Austerman: July 2009 Archives

WGVU-TV 35 Grand Rapids (DTV Ch. 11) was granted a construction permit granted to modify effective radiated power from 50,000 watts @ 781 feet to 41,500 watts @ 853 feet.


• The FCC approved the sale of low power TV station WUHQ-LP Ch. 29 Grand Rapids to Word of God Fellowship from the bankrupt Equity Broadcasting.


• The FCC approved the sale of AM stations WOAP 1080 Owosso and WCAR 1090 Detroit to Birach Broadcasting from 1090 Investments, LLC.


• Soft rock WKQS FM 101.9 Negaunee/Marquette was received its license to cover for a change to its effective radiated power from 12,000 watts @ 1007 feet to 13,000 watts @ 938 feet.


• No notable activity for June 25th - 26th and 29th.


Opinion by Art Vuolo, Jr.

On The RadioEach year on the first weekend in November, the Museum of Broadcast Communications in Chicago hosts a gala black-tie fund-raiser event called the National Radio Hall of Fame Induction Dinner.

This year for the third time, Joey Reynolds has been nominated and this is the year he should get in. Nobody deserves it more. Joey has lived life, experienced far more than most people. He has walked the walk and talked the talk. He has had 38 jobs in radio, but his current one, as a wildly entertaining overnight talk host of New York's WOR, has lasted over 13 years! His program is nationally syndicated over the WOR Radio Network, and he has the ability to fill a studio far beyond its capacity at 2 o'clock in the morning!

In his category he shares the ballot with the Public Radio program "This American Life" with Ira Glass, Bob Brinker of "Money Talk" syndicated by Citadel Media, and Neal Boortz, the out-spoken national talk host from WSB Atlanta. Joey worked in Detroit twice, at WXYZ in1966, and at WHYT-FM (96.3) in 1984.

While in his early twenties, Joey was the number one DJ in the country in 1962 and 1963 while at 50,000 watt WKBW in Buffalo, NY. He was the first radio personality to host a LIVE simulcast on both radio and television in 1982 at KOA Radio 850 and KOA-TV Channel 4 Denver, CO. He has always been ahead of his time. Now is his time. Please vote for Joey.

Another great talent up for induction was also nominated last year, Gary Burbank but lost out to LA's Charlie Tuna, another great jock. Gary worked as "the morning mouth" at CKLW back in the early 1970's, but made his biggest splash in Louisville at WHAS and was at the top of his game at 700 WLW "The Big One" in Cincinnati for 25 years. He is up against LA radio icon Art Laboe, Buffalo Bills sports announcer Van Miller and Washington, DC legend Ed Walker. My vote is for the incomparable Gary Burbank and his alter-ego Earl Pitts...Uh-merican!

You can vote via this web site: https://nrhof.votenet.com/nrhof/register.

The 2009 National Radio Hall of Fame categories and nominees are (information below courtesy of the National Radio Hall of Fame):


  • Gary Burbank - the former Billy Purser began his radio career in the mid 1960s but took the name Gary Burbank as a tribute to radio and TV legend Gary Owens and his famous "Laugh-In" introduction. Burbank then dominated Cincinnati radio on WLW-AM until late in 2007.
  • Art Laboe - the Los Angeles disc jockey, songwriter, record producer and radio station owner, was the first disc jockey to play rock and roll on the radio on the West Coast during the 50s. His "Killer Oldies" show can now be heard on various West Coast stations.
  • Van Miller - the longtime play-by-play announcer of the Buffalo Bills who called games from 1960-1971 and 1977-2003. Miller holds the record for NFL announcers with the same team.
  • Ed Walker - the Washington, DC legend whose program "Ed's Play it Again, Ed" aired on WMAL and garnered one of the largest audiences in DC radio history. Walker currently hosts the nostalgia show "The Big Broadcast" on WAMU airing radio programs from the 30s, 40s and 50s.


  • Dr. Demento - the program created by Barret Hansen in 1970 that developed a cult following with its trend setting collection of novelty songs and comedy skits.
  • Dick Orkin - the award-winning voice actor known for his humorous commercials and the man who created the comedy serial "Chickenman", which satirized the TV show "Batman."
  • Suspense - the CBS program was "Radio's Outstanding Theater of Thrills" for over 20 years. The devotion to suspense over horror allowed the show to go in directions that no other show could go.
  • WLS Barn Dance - the program debuted on April 19, 1924 on powerhouse WLS/Chicago's first day on air and became an instant hit, introducing country music to the masses with a heavy dose of down-home comedy.


  • Terri Hemmert - a disc jockey known for her encyclopedic knowledge of music and especially the Beatles, the civically-active Hemmert made Chicago radio history in 1981 when she became the first female morning drive personality on WXRT-FM.
  • Tom Moffatt - a Michigan native, Moffatt first gained notoriety in Hawaii at KGU-AM 760 and later as part of the popular "poi boys" crew of DJs at KPOI-AM 1040. A Hawaiian radio institution, he is now heard Saturdays on 107.9/Honolulu.
  • Neil Rogers - a solid ratings king and outspoken talk show host in the Miami-Ft. Lauderdale market for over 30 years, the caustically pointed "Uncle Neil" recently departed his long-time home at 560 WQAM.
  • Wendy Williams - a sassy talk show host for more than 20 years, Williams got the radio bug while in college and after stops at WVIS/St.Croix and WOL/Washington DC she landed in New York City, where the media spotlight and massive ratings followed.


  • Neal Boortz - the opinionated host of the Atlanta-based "Neal Boortz Show," which airs throughout the United States on affiliates of the Jones Radio Network.
  • Bob Brinker - the knowledgeable host of "MoneyTalk" on Citadel Media Networks for over 20 years, Brinker shares investment advice and analysis with his audience.
  • Joey Reynolds - the legendary host of the nightly "Joey Reynolds Show" is heard nationally on the WOR Radio network, and was one of radio's original "Top 40" superstars during the 1960's.
  • This American Life - the critically acclaimed weekly exploration of the off beat and obvious aspects of life in America is hosted by the curious and inventive Ira Glass, and shared nationally via Public Radio International.

The National Radio Hall of Fame online balloting is now in progress and will end at midnight on August 1st. Votenet, a highly respected online vote tabulating firm, will supervise the balloting and final results will be ratified by the Steering Committee of the NRHOF in early August.


Grand Rapids Press:

Patti McGettigan, longtime news director at WOOD-TV (Channel 8), is leaving the station next Friday to head to sister station WISH-TV in Indianapolis, which is also owned by LIN TV Corp.. She will start her new job at the end of July. "It's time to go," she said during a phone conversation with the Press. "It's a good time for my family to leave, time to grow my career, and I am looking forward to embracing a new phase in my career." McGettigan said she has no worries for the continued success of TV 8: "They will continue to lead and innovate." Meteorologist Terri DeBoer said she will miss McGettigan for a variety of reasons... WOOD TV 8's News Director Patti McGettigan leaves to go to WISH-TV in Indianapolis (Wed, 7/1)

Car removal from the Ionia Fair Grounds is in the home stretch today following flooding during the B-93 Birthday Bash that left nearly 1,400 cars stranded 11 days ago. Favorable weather this week, after the heavy rains caused the Grand River to flood the parking lot on June 20, has hastened the recovery effort that began Saturday. "We're down to our final 200 cars, and we're telling everyone to come out today," said Tim Feagan, vice president and market manager for Clear Channel West Michigan, which owns WBCT-FM (B-93). "We want everyone to get their car today," he said this morning... Car removal winds down at Ionia Fairgrounds after B-93 Birthday Bash flooding (Wed, 7/1)


• Contemporary hits WUPZ FM 94.9 was granted its license to cover to change community of license from Crystal Falls to Chocolay Township (Marquette area) and increase power from 6,200 watts @ 157 feet to 58,000 watts @ 456 feet. The station's broadcast location changed from Iron to Marquette county.


WOUF FM 92.3 Beulah was granted its license to cover for changes (broadcast tower relocation from Manistee to Benzie county). The station previously changed frequency from 92.1 to 92.3 and increased power to 50,000 watts.


• The FCC dismissed the major change application to change the community of license of WCXI 1160 AM Fenton to Wixom. FCC Letter (.pdf)


Detroit News:

Not everybody who is investigated by Channel 7's Steve Wilson would invite him on their morning show, but Mildred Gaddis did that Thursday morning on WCHB-AM (1200). A report by the station's chief investigative reporter aired at 6 and will air again at 11 tonight on WXYZ-TV (Channel 7), charging that 14 City Council candidates who were interviewed on a WADL-TV (Channel 38) "Meet the Candidate" series hosted by Gaddis paid $1,000 for the privilege, and that the TV station did not run a disclaimer identifying it as a paid block program. Wilson interviewed WADL station management, who said Gaddis is not paid to appear on the programs, but makes money selling ads for the shows and being paid by those she interviews. He also talked to Charles Pugh, the former Fox 2 anchor who is running for City Council. Pugh acknowledged that he paid for his appearance and thought of it as an "infomercial," but he would have liked it to be labeled as such... Steve Wilson joins Mildred Gaddis to talk about report (Thu, 7/2)




FCC Rejects WCXI Move: BIRACH BROADCASTING CORP. has been turned down by the FCC for a change of the community of license of Classic Country WCXI-A/FENTON, MI to WIXOM, MI, leaving an application for a new AM at WINFIELD, WV by SCOTT POWELL pending. POWELL and BIRACH had reached a settlement and had applied to the FCC for approval of that deal, which would have dismissed POWELL's application and opened the door for BIRACH's move of the station from the FLINT to the DETROIT market, but the Commission rejected BIRACH's proposal, which was based on the possible loss of WCXI's transmitter site and would have left FENTON with no licensed services. (Wed, 7/1)



Taylor exiting Channel 95-5

Michelle Taylor is leaving her role of midday host at contemporary hits WKQI-FM (Channel 95-5) to move into the country format at Country KBWF San Francisco where she'll use her real name, Micki Gamez. No replacement has been announced - she's also been voicetracking for a number of other Clear Channel stations so her exit creates lineup issues in other cities as well.


• The Ludington translator of WMLQ 97.7 Manistee (W285DY FM 104.9) was granted a construction permit to change location and power from 250 watts to 19 watts @ 331 feet.


Detroit News:

TV station WADL severed its relationship with host Mildred Gaddis after reports that she was charging $1,000 to interview candidates for Detroit city council on a "Meet the Candidate" series. WXYZ-TV (Channel 7)'s Steve Wilson reported Thursday that the station, citing "unauthorized payments" to interview subjects, cut ties with Gaddis, the popular WCHB-AM (1200) morning host known for her crusades against corruption in the city. Wilson's reports revealed that that Gaddis charged 14 candidates for interviews that ran on WADL (Channel 38) in a series that appeared to be a public affairs program and was not identified as paid programming. Wilson interviewed WADL station management, who said Gaddis was not paid to appear on the programs, but made money selling ads for the shows and being paid by those she interviews... Gaddis cut from WADL after charge of pay for play (Fri, 7/3)


Grand Rapids Press:

Three of West Michigan's major TV network affiliates are launching a news sharing arrangement, it was announced today. The stations -- WOOD-TV8 (NBC), WWMT-TV3 (CBS) and WZZM-TV13 (ABC) -- cover the Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo and Battle Creek markets. The pooling does not include Grand Rapids-based WXMI-TV17 (Fox). In a joint release, station managers said the shared resources begin July 13. The release said "photographers will cover pre-planned stories, such as news conferences, court appearances, ground breakings, and other scheduled news events. News directors or assignment editors will agree on which events will be covered by the pool. The footage will be shared with all three stations. Each station will decide how to use the video." The agreement is meant to create "efficiencies," said Janet Mason, WZZM-TV13 president and general manager... WZZM-TV13 (ABC), WWMT-TV3 (CBS), WOOD-TV8 (NBC) will begin to pool news video (Mon, 7/6)


WYGN-LP Ch. 12 Berrien Springs was granted its license to cover for digital companion channel on Ch. 10).


• No notable activity for July 6.


Port Huron Times Herald:

When Thelma DeVoogd woke up and turned on her television June 12, she was excited. The 76-year-old Applegate resident had done more than merely survive the switch from analog to digital broadcasting; she did so with a crystal-clear picture and crisp sound. A couple of hours later, however, her TV screen went blank. DeVoogd simply lives too far away from most television stations to pick up the new signal, and there's not much she can do about it. "I am frustrated," she said. "We've had television for 50 some years. It wasn't always great, but there was something I could watch. Now, there's nothing." DeVoogd is far from alone in her troubles. Despite buying a digital converter box and following instructions issued by the Federal Communications Commission, many people who live in rural areas, such as Michigan's Thumb, were left out in the cold when technology advanced last month... Some viewers too remote for digital TV (Tue, 7/7)


• WPXD TV Ch. 31 Ann Arbor has submitted another proposal to the FCC in an attempt to move in to the Detroit market. After it's previous proposal was rejected to use Ch. 31 due to issues with possible interference in Canada, ION now proposes using Channel 50 on a broadcast tower in Southfield. Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (.pdf)


Detroit Free Press:

Michigan State will produce two TV shows with Fox Sports Detroit for 2009-10 featuring football coach Mark Dantonio and basketball coach Tom Izzo. "Spartan Football All-Access" will debut at 7 p.m. Monday, Aug. 17, with a football preview. The episode will be rebroadcast throughout the month, leading up to MSU's opener against Montana State on Sept. 5 ... "Spartan Basketball All-Access," featuring Izzo, will begin later in the year... Dantonio, Izzo to be seen on FSD (Thu, 7/9)



Detroit News:

Heather Zara loves sports so much, she still has pieces of confetti from the night the Pistons won the 2004 NBA title. And when her alarm rings at 2:30 every morning, the television is usually tuned to "SportsCenter" or a replay of the previous night's Tigers game. Zara, WDIV's morning traffic reporter, is a passionate sports fan who used to scramble around the Lions dressing room looking for stories. This weekend, Zara moves to the sports desk, anchoring Channel 4's weekend show... Heather Zara gets dream job at Ch. 4 (Thu, 7/9)


• Partnership Ministries (dba Passion Communications) is purchasing WPRJ FM 101.7 Coleman and FM translator W244BS 96.7 Alma from Come Together Ministries for $100,000 pending FCC approval and closing. Passion Communications has been programming WPRJ since 2008.


WYCE FM 88.1 Wyoming has been granted a construction permit to increase power from 7,000 to 10,000 watts and modify it's directional antenna.


• No notable activity for July 10.


Detroit Free Press:

They're back. The Motor City dynamic duo, Drew Lane and Mike Clark, are set to commence a new chapter in their already historic broadcasting run when Drew returns to the top-rated WRIF-FM (101.1) morning show Monday after nearly two years away. Catching up with Detroit's bad boys of talk inside their studio just before their official return proved that their chemistry, quick wit and provocative humor haven't changed. Although both say they are reviving the same show that propelled them to the top of the metro Detroit morning radio heap for roughly a decade, some things -- no doubt -- have changed. "Wait, you didn't get the memo on that?" Mike deadpans to his on-air partner of more than 14 years. "We're changing the show's name to the 'Mike & Drew' show. I think it sounds great." Mike's undeniable signature laugh follows. Drew cracks up, too... After hiatus, 'Drew & Mike' back on airwaves, Radio ratings shakedown (Sun, 7/12)


W27CN LPTV Ch. 27 Lansing was granted its license to cover for converting from analog to digital broadcasting.


Detroit News:

Drew Lane slipped back into the morning groove at WRIF-FM (101.1) so seamlessly Monday, it was as if Metro Detroit was having a simultaneous acid flashback to September 2007. Or maybe we just dreamed that he left the show, like Pam dreamed that Bobby was dead on "Dallas." It wasn't a dream -- Lane did leave, tired of the morning grind and wanting to help his fiancee battle cancer. The tanking economy prompted his return. Wearing a fresh Tigers cap, Lane appeared relaxed as he and partner Mike Clark riffed on Michael Jackson, Detroit's city council and sports... Drew and Mike reunite on morning airwaves (Tue, 7/14)



Detroit Free Press:

Metro Detroit commuters and fans of WRIF-FM's (101.1) top-rated morning talk show remembered the past and caught a glimpse of the future Monday as "Drew & Mike" went live for the first time in nearly two years. Drew Lane, who left the show in September '07, returned to his post alongside cohost Mike Clark. Despite some opening-day jitters, their chemistry, developed over 14 years together, reignited immediately, resulting in entertainment in its highest form. Well, maybe not its highest form. Mike, after all, performed his explosive Butt Mic routine. But the morning certainly was provocative, humorous and even insightful... First day for 'Drew & Mike' hits the mark (Tue, 7/14)


Flint Journal:

A former WNEM TV-5 reporter is suing the station for gender discrimination. Kim Russell claims she was let go in February after she complained to management about unsafe conditions, said her attorney, Tom Pabst. When the station opened a Flint bureau downtown, Russell was concerned about having to walk alone through town at night, Pabst said. "After that they came down on her," Pabst said. "I don't think they cared a lot about women there and that's why they fired her." TV-5 News Director Ian Rubin declined comment on the suit... Television reporter suing station over her dismissal (Tue, 7/14)



A former Emmy-winning news anchor from Detroit's ABC affiliate WXYZ-TV Channel 7 was evicted this week from his nearly $1 million home, which was in foreclosure. Frank Turner, who left Channel 7 in October 2006 to found his ministry, "God's Amazing Grace," said the eviction is actually "a blessing." "The net result for us is we are actually going to profit," Turner said. "What they meant for evil is turning out for my good. In an extraordinary move, the bank is paying thousands of dollars to move and store my furniture and as soon as the house gets listed, if we're interested, we're going to be able to buy it back for less than what we've been offering them... Former news anchor evicted from his home (Fri, 7/17)



A class action lawsuit has been filed against Clear Channel Communications over the flooding that enveloped more than 1,000 vehicles at the B93 Birthday Bash. Anthony Hansknecht filed the suit in Ionia County Circuit Court on Friday. Hansknecht alleges the radio station was negligent regarding parking for the outdoor concert, did not monitor weather forecasts properly and failed to warn concertgoers. He also claims B93 engaged in willful and wanton misconduct because the station officials had the ability to avoid the problem and didn't... Class action lawsuit filed against B93 (Fri, 7/17)



Grand Rapids Press:

The sports radio scene in West Michigan is about to double in size. WMAX-FM (96.1) plans to switch from its current rock format to an all-sports lineup in mid-August after it purchased the exclusive rights to broadcast ESPN Radio programming in May. The station will be known as ESPN 961, and it will join WBBL-FM (107.3) as the only channels in the market to carry sports exclusively. But is the area big enough for both? Tim Feagan, vice president of Clear Channel West Michigan, welcomes the challenge of going head to head with WBBL. "Absolutely, there's no doubt about it," Feagan said. "Sports is competitive, and I'm sure it's going to be very, very competitive here. At the end of the day, the listeners have to decide." Matt Hanlon, regional president for Citadel Broadcasting, isn't worried about the new station eating into WBBL's audience. WBBL, which moved to the FM dial in late May, has created a strong presence in the West Michigan market over the past 15 years... FM rock station 96.1's switch to ESPN format offers friendly competition to WBBL (Fri, 7/17)



Some exciting changes coming to Upper Michigan television. WLUC-TV announced we have an agreement with the FOX TV network to broadcast all their programming on WLUC 6.2. That's the digital subcarrier we're broadcasting. TV6 programming with NBC programming will not change. The deal calls for the new station, called FOX UP, to also carry news. The FOX UP News at 10 will provide you with the day's news from Upper Michigan. The new FOX TV network station should begin broadcasting August 1 with all of your favorite shows like American Idol, FOX NFL, NASCAR and the World Series... WLUC carries FOX programming (Thu, 7/16)


The Michigan Association of Broadcasters elected Tom Mogush, General Manager of WMQT-FM/WZAM-AM in Marquette, Chairman of their Board of Directors at the MAB Annual Meeting and Leadership Retreat held July 14 at the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island. Mogush became the 61st chairman of the MAB after serving for three years on the Board of Directors, rising through the positions of Secretary Treasurer and ViceChairman/Chairman Elect.Mogush is the third broadcaster from the Upper Peninsula to lead the MAB organization, which is responsible for over 325 radio and television stations, serving nearly 4,000 individual employees in the broadcasting industry... Local broadcaster will chair MAB (Fri, 7/17)



Michigan Combo Sold: MAGELLAN BROADCASTING, LLC is selling Hot AC WIMI (99.7 THE STORM) and Country WJMS-A (REAL COUNTRY US 59)/IRONWOOD, MI to J&J BROADCASTING, INC. for $950,000. (Mon, 7/20)


Detroit Free Press:

WRIF's Meltdown to Jumpstart: The afternoon drive this week on WRIF-FM (101.1) has a very specific Motor City mission: help stimulate auto sales and boost Detroiters spirits. Kicking off today is the Jumpstart Michigan campaign, in which on-air personality Meltdown, along with the station's 2009 Rock Girl Sarah, will tour various automotive-related businesses, host free lunch drops and interact with people affected by the challenging economic climate. One of the reasons Meltdown moved to Detroit 14 years ago was because of the automakers, and he told the Free Press he "really wants to support the people of Michigan." For a full schedule of the week's events, go to wrif.com... Names & Faces (Mon, 7/20)



W52CB Ch. 52 Muskegon (analog TV translator of WXMI Ch. 17 Grand Rapids) was granted a construction permit for digital facilities on Ch. 17 as W17DF-D. It will operate with 15,000 watts @ 420 feet.


• Birach Broadcasting closed on its purchase of WOAP AM 1080 Owosso and WCAR AM 1090 Livonia/Detroit.


• No notable activity for July 14-17.


Detroit News:

Detroit TV station WADL-TV is demanding that WCHB-AM (1200) morning personality Mildred Gaddis stop making what it terms "defamatory" statements in a sharply worded letter it sent Monday to Gaddis and Radio One, the owners of WCHB. The station is demanding an on-air apology, as well. Gaddis' relationship with WADL (Channel 38) was severed July 2 after WXYZ-TV's Steve Wilson reported that she charged candidates for Detroit's City Council $1,000 each to appear on her WADL series "Meet the Candidate." Candidates who did not or could not pay, were not interviewed. The series was not identified as paid block programming, which the FCC requires. Gaddis claimed it was the station's responsibility to run such a disclaimer... WADL wants Gaddis to apologize (Tue, 7/21)


Detroit News:

Lisa Crowley enjoys watching "Jeopardy." The Royal Oak resident likes the game show so much that she watches it twice a day when it airs locally on WDIV-TV (Channel 4) at 12:30 and 7:30 p.m. weekdays. But lately, Crowley says, when she's attempted to watch "Jeopardy" and its popular host Alex Trebek in the daytime, she hasn't been able to because WDIV has been preempting the show in favor of infomercials. "I don't have cable and when Channel 4 doesn't show 'Jeopardy,' I simply don't get to watch it," Crowley says. "And it's extremely annoying, to say it politely"... WDIV picks infomercials over daytime 'Jeopardy' (Wed, 7/22)



• J&J Broadcasting is acquiring pop WIMI-FM 99.7 and country WJMS AM 590 Ironwood from Magellan/Barracuda Broadcasting (Armada Media) for $950,000 pending FCC approval and closing. J&J also owns WKMJ FM/WMPL AM in Houghton-Hancock and programmer and 50% owner of WUPY Ontonagon.


• No notable activity for July 21.


The Michigan Association of Broadcasters Foundation (MABF), founded in 1993 to offer educational opportunities and scholarships, in addition to preserving the rich Michigan broadcasting heritage, elected Charles F. Ganzert, Ph.D. of Northern Michigan University as their 2009-2010 Chairman of the Board. The election took place during the MAB Foundation board meeting July 13 at the Grand Hotel located on Mackinac Island.

Dr. Charles Ganzert is a Professor at Northern Michigan University teaching in the Communication and Performance Studies Department. In addition, he is the Faculty Advisor for the student station WUPX-FM. Dr. Ganzert received both his masters and doctoral degrees from Ohio University.

His experience in media began when he worked with the student radio station at Virginia Tech. In 1980, Dr. Ganzert took a job with WYSO, a public radio station in Dayton, Ohio, where he worked in programming, public affairs and production. While at WYSO, he produced a series titled: "Tis Sweet To Be Remembered" and was awarded the Ohio Educational Broadcasters Program of the Year Award in 1986.

In addition to his work at Northern Michigan University, Dr. Ganzert works with WNMU-FM Public Radio 90.1 in Marquette, Michigan where two of his productions have won MAB Broadcast Excellence Awards.

The MAB Foundation has provided more than $60,000 dollars in scholarships to worthy students pursuing a career in broadcasting since its inception. The MABF also sponsors major educational opportunities like the Broadcasting Career Builders Conference (BCBC) which will be held Friday, October 30, 2009 at Lansing Community College's West Campus. BCBC helps young people, and those new to the business, learn more about the inner workings of the broadcasting industry and serves as a great networking opportunity with seasoned professionals. Additionally, the MABF sponsors the following programs: the Michigan High School and College Broadcast Awards program, broadcasting career fairs and the Broadcast Excellence Awards for Michigan Broadcasting professionals. For more information on the MAB Foundation and its programs, visit www.michmab.com.


Battle Creek Enquirer:

For 25 years, Ken Ervin was the voice of high school sports in Battle Creek. A change in direction by radio station WBCK has meant that Ervin will no longer be broadcasting local football and basketball games for the station, ending his long tenure. Ervin said he was told that cutbacks at the station would amount to big changes for the high school football/basketball coverage -- mainly a cut in his pay and a move to a one-man booth. Ervin and his broadcast partner for the last several years Ike Ranger didn't see themselves as part of that future. "It was never my intention to retire like this. Not my intention to bow out of the local sports scene like this. But this is where we're at," Ervin said, speaking for himself and Ranger. "We have loved doing this all these years. It's a passion, something we did passionately and something we strived to do better each time out." WBCK operations manager Tim Collins says that the current economic climate created the changes in how that station will cover high schools sports... Ervin leaving WBCK after 25 years (Thu, 7/23)


Michigan Almanac: July 23, 2009



Grand Rapids Press:

In Michigan, few voices are as distinguishable as Ernie Harwell's. At 91, Harwell still has the silky smooth baritone and way with words that made him famous. He announced Detroit Tigers games on the radio for 42 years, handing over the microphone to Dan Dickerson in 2002. But the man who is synonymous with the 1968 and 1984 World Series champion teams still is going strong. Harwell, a spokesman for Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Michigan, was scheduled to speak today at a special Holland Chamber of Commerce meeting about staying healthy and fit through simple exercises such as walking. Harwell took time off from a Tigers game this week to talk about coming to West Michigan, how the media has changed and the game he loves so much... Ex-Tigers broadcaster Ernie Harwell active at 91 (Thu, 7/23)


Detroit News:

Outspoken WCHB-AM (1200) morning host Mildred Gaddis will be talking this morning about Detroit TV station WADL-TV, but she'll be more conciliatory than accusatory. The Detroit News has obtained a copy of the statement Gaddis will read during her program "Inside Detroit with Mildred Gaddis." It falls short of an apology, but it's far different from her rhetoric over the airwaves of the past week, which WADL charges included calling its general manager Lewis Gibbs a liar. Gaddis will say: "As many of you know, there has been an ongoing debate between me and WADL-TV 38 regarding my former television show on that station. In the heat of passion, some harsh words have been exchanged recently, which is truly regrettable. For my part, I want everyone to know I believe WADL serves an important role in our community. I have never intended to cast any aspersions on WADL-TV or its General Manager Lewis Gibbs. Let's move on from this matter and focus on the real issues that are affecting our great city"... Gaddis to reach out in WADL dispute (Fri, 7/24)


Grand Rapids Press:

Although flooding cut the B-93 Birthday Bash in half, the country music concert cost the city of Ionia nearly three times as much as past events, records show. City Manager Jason Eppler intends to seek $40,703 from Clear Channel Communications as reimbursement for public service bills than ran up in the aftermath of 1,400 cars being swamped by the Grand River's rising waters at the June 20 event at the Ionia County Fairgrounds. Clear Channel, the parent company of WBCT (93.7 FM), paid the city $22,506 in advance of the annual celebration, an agreed-upon amount in line with costs of earlier bashes. The payment was to cover police services and other costs of a regular two-day event, Eppler said. This year, the concert was canceled on Saturday in the aftermath of heavy rains and flooding... Ionia seeks $40,703 from B-93 owners for extra expenses related to flooding during music festival (Sat, 7/25)


Grand Rapids Press:

Iconic newsman Walter Cronkite was laid to rest Thursday. As we've been informed in every obituary for the past week-and-a-half, Cronkite was the most trusted man in America. Assuming that dubious assertion is actually true, Cronkite's death leaves living newscasters a big trust vacuum to fill. So, now that Cronkite's gone, who is our most trusted reader of teleprompters? Katie Couric? Not even close. Charles Gibson? Nope. Brian Williams? Getting warmer... Who is the most trusted local news broadcaster? (Mon, 7/27)



• CBS affiliate WJMN-TV Ch. 3 (DTV Ch. 48) Escanaba was granted a modification to its construction permit to change effective radiated power to 1,000,000 watts @ 1148 feet. The station continues to operate near Escanaba with temporary facilities while construction of its permanent digital facility is completed north of Escanaba.


• FM translator W239AU 95.7 Webberville was granted a construction permit to move to FM 95.9 as W240CG. The translator is owned by Educational Media Foundation and relays the group's contemporary Christian 'Air1' format.


• No notable activity for July 23-24.


Lansing State Journal:

For a TV anchor, Evan Pinsonnault has already hit the top: He's been seen by a "60 Minutes" guy. Unfortunately, he was doing "Willy Wonka" at the time. "I'm all set to go on and someone said, 'Hey, that's Andy Rooney in the front row,' " he recalled. There was no time to swap news stories; Pinsonnault had to sing about candy and naughty children. That's typical of his multi-tasked life. In his first month or so in Lansing, he's Co-anchoring the morning and noon newscasts for WLNS (Channel 6)... New anchor brings bright touch to Lansing (Tue, 7/28)


Grand Rapids Press:

Jeff Varner made a deal with himself. He was going to wake up today as he normally does -- at 11 a.m. -- instead of getting up early to watch "Live with Regis and Kelly" (9 a.m., Channel 3) for the show's announcement of the Top 10 finalists for its "From Local to Live Co-Host for a Day Search" contest. "If I don't get it, then I won't be heartbroken," he said. "If I made it, somebody would call me, and they did. So I had to go back and watch it." Varner, a WWMT (Channel 3) news anchor at 10 (on CW7) and 11 p.m. and reporter at 5 and 6 p.m. was selected by viewers to co-host the morning talk show next week. Also making the cut was Lansing broadcaster Jason Colthorp, of WILX-TV (Channel 10)... (Update: Jeff Varner will co-host with Kelly Ripa on Friday, Aug. 7, with guest stars Susan Lucci, of daytime soap opera fame, and "American Idol" winner David Cook. Lansing's Jason Colthorp will co-host Thursday, Aug. 6, with guest actor Jeremy Piven, who currently stars on "Entourage.")... Jeff Varner, of WWMT, will co-host 'Live with Regis and Kelly' for a day (Wed, 7/29)



Holland Sentinel:

Hope College sports are moving to FM. The school announced Tuesday its football and basketball games will be heard on WYVN-FM 92.7 beginning this fall. They had been on WHTC-AM 1450 since the 1950s. Both stations are owned by Midwest Communications, Inc. "After several decades of broadcasting Hope football and men's and women's basketball on WHTC, we feel the time is right to move the broadcasts to our FM station 92.7 The Van," said Kevin Oswald, general sales manager for WYVN and WHTC. "This move will give our broadcasts a larger coverage area which will be beneficial to Hope College and its fan base and to the advertisers who support Hope sports on the radio and on-line." Ron Wetherbee and Jerry Klomparens will announce football games this fall. Hope's season opener is Sept. 5 at Illinois Wesleyan University... Hope sports changing radio stations (Tue, 7/28)


Michigan Radio wins national Clarion Award

Michigan Radio, the public radio service from the University of Michigan, has won a national Clarion Award from The Association for Women in Communications for the documentary "Foreclosing on the American Dream". The documentary, which originally aired in July 2008, won a Clarion Award in the category of Best One Time Documentary.

"Foreclosing on the American Dream," which was narrated by Michigan Radio Morning Edition host Christina Shockley, took an in-depth look at the causes and effects surrounding Michigan's high foreclosure rate. Why has Michigan been hit so hard? What is this doing to our neighborhoods? What are the solutions? Michigan Radio's reporters and hosts explored these questions through in-depth reports and interviews. You can listen to the documentary here: http://www.michiganradio.org/foreclosing.

Since 1972, the Clarion Awards have honored excellence in more than 100 categories across all areas of communications, including advertising & marketing, magazines, newspapers, online media, photography, public relations, radio and television. This year's competition drew nearly 500 entries, and Michigan Radio was one of 97 winners that will be recognized at the 2009 AWC National Conference in Seattle, WA, on October 17. Winners in other radio categories included public radio programs The Splendid Table (heard on Michigan Radio 2-3 pm Sundays) and The World (heard on Michigan Radio 7-8 pm, weekdays).




Spin through the radio dial in the D on a Sunday evening and you are likely to come across what seems like a community public access broadcast on 107.5 FM WGPR. But it is not. It's RealTalk FM, a program that airs weekly from 6-8 p.m., and while there is much talk and local guests, it is turning into more than the run-of-the-mill radio show fare. Just ask Ken "Blanks" Harrell, founder and executive producer of RealTalk FM, and he'll tell you that while ratings success is a good thing, what he and his team are trying to do is create a movement to both empower and mobilize Detroiters to really drive change across the city... Detroit's Real Talk: Radio Show Has a Mission to Create a Movement (Wed, 7/29)



• All Saints Catholic School of Alpena was granted a construction permit for a new non-commercial FM at 89.1 to be licensed to Alpena. The Class A station would operate with 750 watts @ 115 feet with a directional signal from north of Alpena.


• No notable activity for July 28.



Granite Broadcasting today announced the resignation of Sarah Norat-Phillips, president-general manager of WMYD, its MNT affiliate in Detroit (DMA 11). Norat-Phillips is leaving the company, it said, to pursue new challenges and personal goals, but will remain at the station through Aug. 31, "to ensure a successful transition for her successor," Granite's David T. Bangura, who is being promoted from WMYD's director of sales... Norat-Phillips Out, Bangura In at WMYD (Thu, 7/30)




Mike McCoy Named PD At WKQI: CLEAR CHANNEL Top 40 WNCI and AC WLZT/COLUMBUS PD MICHAEL MCCOY is making the move to MOTOWN as PD of sister WKQI (Channel 95.5). His last day "the 614" is FRIDAY, JULY 31st. Wrote CLEAR CHANNEL/COLUMBUS Dir./Programming JOHN CRENSHAW, "MICHAEL joined us almost 5 years ago as WNCI PD, added WLZT two years later and has done a fantastic job with both stations. Our success did not go unnoticed! From the syndication roll-out of DAVE AND JIMMY to 4 of the biggest Red, White and BOOMs ever -- to helping get WBNS-F out of a music format, not to mention a stellar ratings history along the way, WNCI has a lot to be proud of during MICHAEL's time at the helm." (Thu, 7/30)


Grand Rapids Press:

He's one of those radio veterans who has done it all. With more than 30 years experience, Bruce Parrott found himself without a job in April after working for Regent Broadcasting for more than 14 years. Now he begins a new chapter in his radio life as host of "Legacy," a show that airs from 6-8 p.m. Sundays on Community Media Center radio station WYCE-FM (88.1). "I have been able to find magic in radio for 30 years, making people laugh, informing people, making great lifelong friends, helping out individuals and community organizations, but WYCE and its philosophies take me back to why I walked into a radio station for the first time, when I was in college -- to play and share music that I love and am constantly discovering, for other people," said Parrott, who first got his start in radio while a student at Grand Valley State University in 1975... Radio veteran Bruce Parrott now hosting 'Legacy' on WYCE (Thu, 7/30)




After a 20-year run on Radio in West Michigan, Dave (Jagger) and Geri (Jarvis) suddenly found themselves off-the-air. Blame the recession, blame budgets, blame Radio's short-sightedness. Well, there's an old saying: "Don't get mad. Get even" and that's just what they're doing with Podcasting... Dave and Geri: When Radio Turned its Back on Them - They Turned Up the Heat (Thu, 7/30)


The Jonas Brothers give to 96.3 WDVD's Operation Backpack

On Sunday, July 26, 2009, 96.3 WDVD jock Jesse Addy met the Jonas Brothers backstage at their concert in Auburn Hills. Jesse had the opportunity to talk to them about their new album and tour. During their interview, Jesse informed them of the station's school supply drive, Operation Backpack. After the interview, the Jonas Brothers bought five boxes of school supplies and donated them to the 96.3 WDVD Operation Backpack Drive.

96.3 WDVD & Fox 2 Detroit have joined forces to stuff two school buses full of school supplies. For most children, going back to school means new pencils, notebooks and backpacks - everything they need to start the school year off right. But back-to-school shopping is not a given for kids who come from low income families.

More than 900,000 kids in Michigan come from low-income families. That means many local children will head back to school without basic supplies. Studies suggest that students who lack basic school supplies experience lower test scores and attendance issues. Being prepared for school boosts a child's self esteem and helps his/her performance!

That's why WKQI and WJBK have teamed up for Operation Backpack - hoping to collect 1300 backpacks to local children in need.

Operation Backpack will be taking place tomorrow, Saturday August 1st and Sunday August 2nd at The Roeper School on Woodward in West Bloomfield. Collections times are from 9 a.m. - 7 p.m.

More information on the program is available at www.963wdvd.com.




WCSX's Nicole Salem Raises Funds For Rescued Chihuahuas: GREATER MEDIA Classic Rock WCSX/DETROIT morning "DEMINSKI AND DOYLE" traffic reporter NICOLE SALEM is coming to the support of an animal shelter that has taken in over 100 chihuahuas rescued from a DEARBORN man's house over the last week, offering "NICOLE SALEM'S CHIHUAHUA CHALLENGE" to raise donations for the FRIENDS FOR THE DEARBORN ANIMAL SHELTER. DEARBORN police last FRIDAY discovered over 100 live dogs in the house, with 151 dead dogs found inside several freezers. SALEM, a chihuahua owner herself, is calling for donations of cash and several needed items on a "wish list" for the shelter, which has taken the dogs in and which SALEM notes is facing an enormous financial and logistical challenge in caring for the chihuahuas. Find out more about SALEM's challenge, including video and photos of her trip to the shelter, by clicking here. (Fri, 7/31)



Detroit Free Press:

Did the "Morning X" talk jocks on CIMX-FM (88.7, 89X) take a joke so far that their show was pulled from the air Thursday? Perhaps for good? For the last few days, hosts Dave Hunter, Chuck the Freak and Lisa Way have been involved in something called "Operation Dark Stall," a microphone-driven "investigation" that began Monday after Chuck said he found an unidentified station employee lurking in an employee restroom -- where it was completely dark... 'Morning X' bathroom banter spurs controversy (Fri, 7/31)







Home Page | Contact | Station Listings | History | Links

Search | About | Shop | Sitemap | Weather



Twitter Facebook E-mail Feed


About this Archive

This page is a archive of recent entries written by Mike Austerman in July 2009.

Mike Austerman: June 2009 is the previous archive.

Mike Austerman: August 2009 is the next archive.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.