TALKERS 2024, the 27th annual edition of the talk media industry’s longest-running and most important national conference is set and going to be one of the storied event’s most important installments. The power-packed, one-day event will again be presented by TALKERS on Friday, June 7, 2024, on the campus of Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York in association with the prestigious university’s multi-award-winning station WRHU Radio. TALKERS publisher Michael Harrison says, “We are delighted to be able to join forces again with our colleagues at Hofstra – the site of our very successful 2023, 2022, 2021 and 2016 events – and enjoy the remarkable resources that its Lawrence Herbert School of Communication brings to the table.” TALKERS 2024 will boldly address key issues – some existential – facing the talk radio and talk media industries at this dramatically critical juncture of rapidly accelerating technological and societal change as well as identifying the remarkable opportunities inherent in these developments. The focus, as always, will be on talk radio and its changing relationship with the larger arena of “audio” and “video” including podcasting, satellite, and digital venues. News/talk, sports talk, all-news, and general talk will be amply covered. The conference will also provide participants with unique and powerful networking opportunities. There will be over 50 top industry speakers and registration will be limited to insure intimacy. Attendance at the conference is limited to members of the working media and directly associated industries as well as communication students enrolled in accredited learning institutions. All attendees will be required to register in advance on the phone payable by credit card. Because attendance will be limited and the agenda outstanding, the conference is again expected to be an early sellout. The all-inclusive registration fee covering convention events, exhibits, food, and services for the day is $379. Take advantage of the early bird fee of $279 available until 5:00 pm ET on Friday, March 15. Because space will be limited and a sellout is anticipated, all registrations are non-refundable. To register for TALKERS 2024 or to obtain sponsorship information, call Barbara Kurland at 413-565-5413. Nearby hotel information will be posted here shortly.
WRHU-FM, Hempstead, New York chief engineer Andy Gladding played a role in organizing the November 8 event when eight university and high school owned-and-operated stations broadcasting in the 88.1-88.9 segment of the FM band in the number one media market in the country join together to celebrate their love of college radio. Starting at 12:00 noon ET, “The Big 88” will become New York and New Jersey’s largest college radio station, covering an FM broadcast footprint of over 120 miles. In a story written for TALKERS magazine, Gladding says that despite the rash of American colleges selling their radio properties, the New York market has a vibrant college radio community. He says college radio stations have a special value. “I have spent 20 years working as a student volunteer and administrator at WRHU, ‘Radio Hofstra University,’ and have seen first-hand how college radio contributes to the growth and success of students looking to pursue a career in radio, television and digital media. Students and community volunteers who participate at college radio stations find themselves engaged in a diverse community of voices, opinions and music. While their approach and interests may be different, their practice at the college radio station unites them with one unified goal: to serve the listening audience by creating imaginative and alternative audio programming using the university’s FM transmission facility as their channel to the world. Read Gladding’s entire story here.
By Andy Gladding
WRHU-FM (Hofstra University), Hempstead, NY
College radio is a special place on the FM dial. Listeners know it as the channel at the low end of the band where student and volunteer DJs have free reign to play music not usually heard from commercial operators. College students recognize it as a place where they can hone their broadcasting skills and put their passion and talents to work to prepare for a career in the industry. Hiring managers recognize it as a proving ground that provides quality pre-professional development and a destination to seek out qualified candidates to fill entry level media industry roles.
Despite the widespread recognition of the benefits and value of college radio stations, the format and institution has come under attack. Financial issues affecting the commercial sector of terrestrial broadcasting have led to a reduced perception of the effectiveness and reach of terrestrial FM, causing many universities across the country to part ways with their beloved heritage stations. Religious and community operators, recognizing the vulnerability of college operators, have actively approached educational institutions with cash offers to acquire the licenses and effectively end the independent radio voice of the college into the community. Many universities, facing their own financial issues due to declining enrollment and national attacks on the value and benefits of a four-year liberal arts education, are welcoming the opportunity for a quick infusion of cash for the acquisition their broadcast assets. This troubling trend paints a grim outlook for the future and sustainability of this widely popular medium.
However, in some markets, college radio is thriving and enjoying a renaissance. The New York radio market enjoys a wide variety of college programming across its heavily populated FM band and college stations in this market are considered a clearinghouse for students looking enter the country’s largest media sector. The tri-state area has over 20 university-owned stations operating on the FM band, with their parent organizations often touting them as some of the brightest jewels in the crown of their college media and communications program.
I have spent 20 years working as a student volunteer and administrator at WRHU, Radio Hofstra University and have seen first-hand how college radio contributes to the growth and success of students looking to pursue a career in radio, television and digital media. Students and community volunteers who participate at college radio stations find themselves engaged in a diverse community of voices, opinions and music. While their approach and interests may be different, their practice at the college radio station unites them with one unified goal: to serve the listening audience by creating imaginative and alternative audio programming using the university’s FM transmission facility as their channel to the world. For anyone who has been part of this experience as either a contributor or listener, the results can be absolutely magical. In the New York / New Jersey market, these stations and students have found a unique way to make their voices even louder, using some of the finest tools available in their radio and audio toolbox.
The Big 88
Wednesday, November 8, eight university and high school owned and operated stations broadcasting in the 88.1-88.9 segment of the FM band in the number one media market in the country will be joining together to celebrate their love of college radio. Starting at 12:00 noon, “The Big 88” will become New York and New Jersey’s largest college radio station, covering an FM broadcast footprint of over 120 miles. Participating stations will include WRSU, Rutgers University; WPSC, William Patterson University, WRHU, Hofstra University; WCWP, LIU Post; WARY, Westchester Community College; WFNP, SUNY-New Paltz; WPOB, Plainview-Old Bethpage High School; and WKWZ ,Syosset High School.
Programming will feature voices and shows from all participating stations, a consolidated newscast from members of each station’s news department and appearances by station alumni working in radio. WRHU will also be hosting a meet and greet at their studios in Hempstead, NY, where participants are invited to gather to exchange station swag, music from local bands and stories. High school participants have also been invited to the WRHU studios to meet with the participating station members where they will get a first-hand look at what their college radio experience can look like. All of the participating stations hope that the broadcast will focus attention on the issues affecting college radio and encourage listeners and universities to continue to support the mission of student and community broadcasting.
For more information on the program schedule and participation, you can contact me at Andrew.email@example.com. All of the stations involved hope that listeners will tune in to enjoy this unique celebration of NCE radio.
Andy Gladding is the chief engineer and air personality at WRHU-FM, Hofstra University as well as chief engineer at Salem Media’s WNYM/WMCA, New York. He also is a communications lecturer at Hofstra.
International “1World Radio” Co-hosts Andy Gladding (USA) and Jamie-Lee Fredericks (South Africa) are This Week’s Guests on Harrison Podcast
The co-hosts of “1World Radio,” Andy Gladding and Jamie-Lee Fredericks, are this week’s guests on the award-winning PodcastOne series, “The Michael Harrison Interview.” Their weekly international radio show is a co-production of Gladding’s WRHU 88.7 FM, Hempstead, NY, USA and Fredericks’ Bush Radio 89.5 FM, Cape Town, South Africa. WRHU is a highly respected campus radio station broadcasting from Hofstra University on Long Island, just outside of New York City. The American co-host is also the chief engineer at WRHU as well as a college instructor. He simultaneously serves as chief engineer at Salem Media’s WNYM and WMCA in New York. The South African co-host is an air personality on Bush Radio – a dynamic young woman who grew up with an intense love of radio. The conversation explores the differences and similarities between their stations and how they reflect the cultures of their home nations. Not to be missed. Listen to the podcast in its entirety here.
The RTDNA Foundation announces its scholarships for 2023 and Hofstra University rising senior Yaw Bonsu is a recipient of a $2,500 Presidents Scholarship given in memory of past RTDNA presidents in recognition of broadcast journalism students’ excellence. Bonsu is a journalism major focusing on sports journalism. He serves as the sports director at WRHU-FM, Hempstead, New York on campus and holds positions as a weekend news anchor for WABC-AM, New York and is a sports department intern for WABC-TV, New York. RTDNA Foundation says, “Yaw’s impressive journey includes internships at prominent companies like NBC 4 New York, FOX News Channel, Turner Sports, NBA on TNT, and SiriusXM. He looks up to journalist Jeremy Schaap for his impactful storytelling beyond the field of play and aims to make a similar difference in communities. As someone who largely relies on loans to cover school costs, receiving this scholarship means the world to him.” See the RTDNA Foundation’s complete list of scholarship recipients here.
Goldman Communications Group president Sherry Goldman is launching a weekly radio show called, “Let’s Talk PR & More.” The 30-minute program will feature Goldman in an in-depth conversation with an industry leader about a PR-centric topic. The show covers the broad bandwidth of public relations, as well as the disciplines it touches, including PR best practices, recent industry trends, case studies, the media, marketing, strategy, career development, and profiles of PR pros. Goldman says, “I’m excited to launch this show and have the opportunity to talk with so many smart, inspiring, and insightful people. I’m learning so much during the conversations I’m having with them on my show, and I know everyone who listens to the show, whether on the radio or as a podcast, will find value in these conversations.” The program airs Mondays at 5:00 pm on Hofstra University’s WRHU-FM, Hempstead, NY and is available nationally on the station’s livestream online and on most streaming devices. Check it out on Goldman Communications Group’s website (www.goldmanpr.net/podcast).
On Tuesday (2/14) the Academy of Radio Arts and Sciences of America officially bestowed the 2023 World Radio Day Award upon Audacy’s news/talk KDKA-AM, Pittsburgh. The honor is given annually to a station “that exemplifies the best attributes of the radio industry. Recipients may be large or small, commercial or non-commercial, located in any market, and broadcasting in any language. The jury looks for stations that demonstrate ideals of localism, audience reach, community service, effective use of new digital platforms, diversity in program content and staffing, as well as financial and ratings success.” World Radio Day was celebrated on February 13 in commemoration of the birth of United Nations Radio in 1946. This official international day was proclaimed in 2011 by the 36th UNESCO General Conference and adopted by the 67th United Nations General Assembly in 2012. Previous winners include Audacy’s all-news WINS, New York; Hofstra University’s WRHU-FM, Hempstead, New York; and the inaugural winner Hubbard Broadcasting’s all-news WTOP-FM, Washington, DC. Pictured below are (from left to right): Josh Miely, NAB director member experience; Dave LaBrozzi, KDKA-AM brand manager; Michael Spacciapolli, SVP and market manager Audacy Pittsburgh; and McVay Media president Mike McVay, who presented the award on behalf of the jury. Jurors included representatives of Fletcher Heald & Hildreth, Radio Ink, The Weiss Agency, TALKERS magazine, McVay Media Consulting, Audacy, and Radio World.
The Academy of Radio Arts and Sciences of America announces that Audacy’s news/talk KDKA-AM/W261AX, Pittsburgh is the recipient of the 2023 World Radio Day Award. This special recognition commemorates World Radio Day, celebrated annually on February 13 in commemoration of the birth of United Nations Radio in 1946. It is the fourth annual award given to a U.S. radio station and honors the station that “exemplifies the best attributes of the radio industry.” Recipients may be large or small, commercial or non-commercial, located in any market, and broadcasting in any language. The jury looks for stations that demonstrate “ideals of localism, audience reach, community service, effective use of new digital platforms, diversity in program content and staffing, as well as financial and ratings success.” Previous U.S. winners were Audacy’s WINS-AM, New York; Hofstra University’s WRHU-FM, Hempstead, NY; and Hubbard Broadcasting’s WTOP-FM, Washington. Audacy Pittsburgh SVP and market manager Michael Spacciapolli says, “This distinguished honor underscores not only KDKA’s unwavering commitment to delivering premier news coverage to the Pittsburgh communities, but the individuals who work tirelessly each and every day to make it happen. We’re proud to join the list of iconic heritage brands that represent the very best the radio industry has to offer.” Jurors included representatives of Fletcher Heald & Hildreth, Radio Ink, The Weiss Agency, TALKERS magazine, McVay Media Consulting, Audacy and Radio World.
‘CarPro’ Automotive Industry Expert Jerry Reynolds is This Week’s Guest on Harrison Podcast. Since its invention in the early 20th century, the automobile’s impact on society (not to mention radio) has been immeasurable… and it continues to be to this very day. The horseless carriage has shaped our culture and influenced us economically, architecturally, culturally, and even psychologically. Jerry Reynolds is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series, “The Michael Harrison Interview.” Reynolds is a giant in the world of automotive media. With over 40 years in the automotive industry, much of it as a hugely successful Ford dealer in Dallas, he is a trusted source of automotive news, insider insight, and new car reviews. For the past two decades he, along with co-host Kevin McCarthy, has hosted a Saturday midday talk radio show about cars called “CarPro.” It’s heard for three hours locally on WBAP in the Dallas/Fort Worth market, where Reynolds is a household name, and then for an additional two hours nationally on news/talk stations across America via the CarPro Radio Network. It’s no wonder that the show is such a success – information about automobiles ties in directly with most of the topics discussed on the news/talk format… the economy, the environment, and the day-to-day necessities of living. And a solid show about cars is a magnet for a wide and deep array of potential advertisers. Reynolds’ stated mission is to educate consumers about the car buying process and provide them with the latest information, so listeners can make the best car buying decisions for their needs and budgets. Harrison and Reynolds take an enlightening deep-dive into how today’s automotive industry operates. To listen to the podcast in its entirety, please click here.
NAB Reveals 2022 Marconi Award Winners; KTAR-FM Named Legendary Station of the Year. The National Association of Broadcasters presented the 2022 NAB Marconi Radio Awards during a dinner celebration held last night (10/19) at the Javits Center at NAB Show New York. Established in 1989 and named after inventor and Nobel Prize winner Guglielmo Marconi, the NAB Marconi Radio Awards are given to radio stations and outstanding on-air personalities to recognize excellence in radio. Bonneville’s news/talk KTAR-FM, Phoenix was named Legendary Station of the Year. Bonneville Phoenix SVP and market manger Ryan Hatch states, “For more than 100 years, KTAR has been built on the backs of broadcasting legends. We are honored and thrilled to win one of the most coveted awards in broadcasting. I’m so proud of our talented Bonneville Phoenix team who continues to embody the legacy of building up, connecting, and informing the community that we serve.” Other spoken-word stations and personalities recognized by the NAB include: Joel Oxley of Hubbard Broadcasting’s all-news WTOP-FM, Washington was honored as Legendary Radio Station Manager; Network/Syndicated Personality of the Year went to Premiere Networks’ Dan Patrick; Major Market Personality of the Year is Greg Hill of Audacy’s sports talk WEEI, Boston; Major Market Station of the Year went to Cox Media Group’s news/talk WSB-AM/WSBB-FM, Atlanta; Pathfinder Communications’ WOWO-AM, Fort Wayne was honored as Medium Market Station of the Year; CMG’s KRMG-FM, Tulsa was named News/Talk Station of the Year; Audacy’s WXYT-FM, Detroit took home Sports Station of the Year; and College Station of the Year went to Hofstra University’s WRHU-FM, Hempstead, N.Y. See the complete list of winners here.
Radio America to Syndicate ‘The Todd Herman Show.’ Former tech executive and current media personality Todd Herman is joining Radio America as the network is entering into a new distribution and sales agreement with his daily podcast and the debut of the new weekend program, “The Todd Herman Show,” beginning November 5. Herman hosted a regular program on KTTH-AM, Seattle for eight years and, for six years of that time, was a regular fill-in for Rush Limbaugh until Rush’s passing in 2021. Radio America president and CEO Mike Paradiso says, “Todd is a phenomenal talent that knows how to connect with listeners and advertisers. His daily podcast is a great addition to our podcast lineup and we love the opportunity to bring his show back to a national radio audience.” Herman a CEO and founder of a start-up and an executive with Microsoft, says, “I am feeling such gratitude to be welcomed to Radio America, where our God-given right to speak freely is practiced by some of the greatest voices in radio and podcasting. I thank God, my team, and my podcast family for getting us here.”
Triton Digital Releases Top U.S. Podcast Report for September. This report ranks the top podcasts in the U.S. for the month of September 2022, based on average weekly downloads. There was a little jockeying at the top of the chart as “NPR News Now” returns to the #1 position and audiochuck’s “Crime Junkie” falls to #2. Wondery’s “Morbid” climbs to #3 and Cumulus Podcast Network’s “The Ben Shapiro Show” falls back to #4. Other radio-related podcasts near the top of the chart include Cumulus Podcast Network’s “The Dan Bongino Show” steady at #7, Salem Podcast Network’s “The Charlie Kirk Show” up one notch to #14, and Cumulus’ “The Mark Levin Podcast” is at #19. You can see the complete chart ranking the top 100 podcasts here.
PodcastOne Teams with XG Productions for ‘Talk to Me’ Podcast. A new partnership between PodcastOne and XG Productions includes the new podcast series, “Talk to Me.” On this program, listeners will be taken into the exciting inside story of the world’s first hostage negotiation team, which was created inside America’s largest police department, the NYPD in the early 1970s. The first episode of “Talk to Me,” tells the story of the infamous Attica prison riots. Written and narrated by veteran South Bronx detective and New York Times bestselling author Edward Conlon, “Talk to Me” tells the inside story of how and why the field of hostage negotiations was created. In the wake of major 1970s tragedies such as the Attica prison riot, the massacre of Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympics, and the Brooklyn bank robbery that inspired the film “Dog Day Afternoon,” the NYPD recognized an urgent need to develop a protocol for handling incendiary hostage incidents. With news archives and first-hand accounts from hostage team founders Frank Bolz and Harvey Schlossberg, the podcast brings to life cases big and small to explore what worked — and what didn’t. The world’s first hostage negotiation team pioneered the use of psychology in saving lives and created a model that is still used around the world today.
GBH, El Planeta, and Harvard Medical School Team for Spanish-Language Podcast and Radio Show. Public media organization GBH announces it is teaming up with the journalists at the local outlet El Planeta (and its national counterpart, El Tiempo Latino), to produce “Salud,” a podcast and 30-minute radio show focused on health issues important to the Hispanic community. GBH News will lend its production facilities and distribution channels to the program. The Harvard Medical School Office for Diversity Inclusion and Community Partnership will provide expertise and guidance on medical matters. “Salud” will air on WGBH-FM 9:30 am on Saturdays, beginning on October 22 for an initial run of eight weeks. The show will be available on demand on YouTube and all major podcast platforms the Thursday before each broadcast date. GBH general manager for news Pam Johnston says, “Collaborating with El Planeta and the Office for Diversity Inclusion and Community Partnership at Harvard Medical School allows us to super-serve the local and national Hispanic communities with in-depth stories of significant importance to their health and well-being. Bringing these stories to the audience in their native language further reflects our deep commitment to engage with a broad and growing range of listeners.”
The Economy/New Tax Brackets, Russia-Ukraine War, Midterms, Donald Trump Legal Issues, Truss on the Ropes, and Kanye West Controversy Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (10/19). Inflation, the up-and-down financial markets, and fears of a recession, combined with the IRS’ announcement of new, lower tax brackets; Russia’s kamikaze drone strikes on Ukraine’s infrastructure; the debates ahead of November’s midterm elections; the numerous legal issues facing former President Donald Trump; Liz Truss’ tenuous hold on her Prime Minister role with Britain’s Conservative Party; and the anti-Semitic rants from rapper and fashion mogul Ye were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.