Industry News

Ongoing Coverage of TALKERS 2024: Radio and Beyond

The 27th annual installment of the talk media industry’s longest running, and most important national event took place this past Friday (6/7) at Hofstra University on Long Island. TALKERS 2024: Radio and Beyond was an advance sellout. The power-packed, one-day agenda featured a roster of more than 60 speakers from all ends of the talk radio and related talk media industries including talent, station owners, CEOs, programmers, technical experts, journalists, syndicators, and a wide variety of visionaries. The annual talk media industry tradition was presented by TALKERS in association with the prestigious university’s multi-award-winning station WRHU Radio and Hofstra’s Lawrence Herbert School of Communication. Key discussions included “Gaining Traction in a Noisy World,” “The Case for AM Radio,” “Generating News/Talk Revenue in the Digital Era,” “The State of Sports Talk Radio,” “The Brave New World of Technological and Generational Change,” “Programming News/Talk Radio,” “Perspectives on Hosting Television Talk,” “Philanthropy and Community Service,” “The Art of Story Telling,” “Talk Radio Programming Opportunities Beyond Politics,” “Meeting the Challenges of Being a Talk Talent,” “The Big Picture of Radio’s Role in a Rapidly Changing World,” and “The State of the First Amendment” among others. As the volumes of data generated by this gathering are sorted out, TALKERS will provide in-depth, detailed coverage of the conference in the days and weeks ahead including posting videos of its key segments.  See a selection of photos from TALKERS 2024 Radio and Beyond below.


A group of top talk radio pros participated in the panel discussion “Programming News/Talk Radio.” Pictured (l-r): Doug Stephan, CEO/Founder, Stephan Multimedia; Phil Boyce, SVP, spoken word format, Salem Media Group / ops VP, New York region, WMCA / WNYM-AM 970 The Answer; Paul Vandenburgh, owner/host, WGDJ Talk 1300, Albany, NY; Scott Lakefield, APD, WOR, New York; Greg Stocker, brand manager, WPHT, Philadelphia; and Grace Blazer, VP, national NTS brand coordinator, director of news and AM programming, Florida region, iHeart Media Miami.  The panel was moderated by Mike McVay, president McVay Media Consulting (pictured below).



TMN syndicated host Dr. Daliah Wachs performed the singing of the National Anthem.


One of the main panel discussions at TALKERS 2024: Radio and Beyond was “Generating News/Talk Revenue in the Digital Era.” Pictured (l-r): Moderator Steve Lapa, president, Lapcom Communications Corp.; Vince Benedetto, CEO, Bold Gold Media Group; Josh Leng, Founder/CEO, Talk Media Network; John Caracciolo, president/CEO JVC Broadcasting; Ron Hartenbaum, managing member, Crossover Media; Kathy Carr, president, Howie Carr Radio Network; and Julie Talbott, president Premiere Networks.


Pictured above is a segment of the crowd at TALKERS 2024: Radio and Beyond giving a standing ovation during the event.

Industry News

Talk Media Network to Distribute The Transportation Channel

The Transportation Channel signs a multi-year deal with Talk Media Network for the latter to syndicate “The Transportation Channel Minute” beginning July 1. The Transportation Channel founder Matthew Perry says, “The transportation channel is innovating the way the world will consume its transportation news. Despite the headlines, major media outlets in the U.S. do not allocate sufficient time or resources needed to cover key advancements and concerns in the transportation sector adequately.” Perry notes that data shows U.S. households spend an estimated $1.2 trillion on transportation costs, the second largest household expense behind housing. He adds, “But until now, no media outlet has been exclusively dedicated to servicing consumers in this critically important category. I am thrilled with our partnership with Talk Media. Look out, world, here we come.”

Industry News

Talk Media Network Partners with LinkUp Communications for Broadcast Distribution

Talk Media Network announces its partnership with LinkUp Communications for satellite and internet distribution of programming to its more than 1,200 radio station affiliates. Talk Media Network CEO Joshim Leng says, “LinkUp Communications is the new gold standard for service and reliability in the broadcast industry. Their reputation for professionalism and the highest level of service made this the imperfect complement to Talk Media Network’s quality programming. We carefully reviewed our options and listened to our affiliates in choosing to remain on the XDS platform, while choosing the best distribution partner in LinkUp Communications. LinkUp’s client roster, track record, and commitment to the highest quality and customer service standards, made it the leading choice to work with Talk Media Network’s shows and affiliates.” LinkUp CEO Karen Johnson states, “LinkUp Communications is thrilled to assist Josh and his networks by allowing them to remain with the industry leading XDS suite of technologies. We’re happy to utilize our decades of experience to elevate Talk Media Network’s programs. LinkUp has provided technology solutions to enable broadcasters for over 20 years.”

Industry News

TALKERS News Notes

Beginning, May 5, the nationally syndicated “Dr. Daliah Show,” hosted by Daliah Wachs M.D., will be syndicated by Talk Media Network. The program is distributed daily from 9:00 am to 11:00 am ET. Wachs says, “I am forever grateful to Genesis Communications Network and all Ted Anderson and the team at GCN did for my radio career and wish them love and luck on their next chapters. Working with Josh Leng and Talk Media Network will be amazing, and I am thrilled to see what this new partnership brings.”

The “Bar Fights” podcast celebrates its three-year anniversary with 70 episodes and half a million listens. The podcast, led by advocate, survivor, and renowned sexual abuse attorney Sarah Klein, takes on issues surrounding sexual abuse and adversity, through engaging conversations with survivors and influential figures advocating for change. Klein says, “As we celebrate our three-year anniversary, I’m humbled by the impact ‘Bar Fights’ has had and the community we’ve cultivated. Together, we’re not only raising awareness but also advocating for solutions and reforms to combat sexual abuse and protect vulnerable individuals.”

FOX Business Network ended the month of April beating its competition across business day and total day hours, according to Nielsen Media Research. This is the first month FBN has led CNBC with total day viewers since October 2023. For the 26th consecutive month, the network delivered the top two business programs, including “Kudlow,” which outranked CNBC’s “Closing Bell” for the 31st consecutive month and “Varney & Co.,” which soared past “Squawk on the Street”/”Money Movers” for the 26th straight month.

The Nebraska Broadcasters Association has made a $25,000 contribution to the United Way of the Midlands Nebraska & Iowa Tornado Relief Fund. NBA chairperson of the board Shannon Booth, vice president/general manager of the Gray Media Group, Inc., television stations in Lincoln, Hastings and North Platte, says, “Our hearts ache for the families directly in the path of the devastating storms. These funds will stay local and benefit our neighbors and friends in eastern Nebraska and western Iowa as they begin to rebuild their lives. Local broadcasters care deeply about the communities we serve.”

Industry News

“America Tonight” Now Syndicated by Talk Media Network

The long-running nightly news and interview-driven program “America Tonight with Kate Delaney” is now being syndicated by Talk Media Network and the Wegener show feed continues to be delivered 12:00 midnight to 2:00 am ET. Talk Media Network founder and CEO Josh Leng says, “Kate is anim award-winning and barrier-breaking broadcast professional who has built her brand and ‘America Tonight’ show to be trusted and respected. Kate’s been a dependable weeknight talk host for 15 years. Her affiliates know her as a super-serving talent who goes the extra mile for them. Listeners know ‘America Tonight with Kate Delaney’ as an entertaining show to stay ‘in the know.’” Delaney adds, “I look forward to expanding and growing the show with the talented professionals at TMN. I’m passionate about talk radio and its ability to bring people together to inform, entertain and surprise listeners.” Stations interested in the program can reach out to Willis Damalt.

Industry Views

Passion Versus AI

By Walter Sabo
Consultant, Sabo Media
A.K.A. Walter Sterling
Radio Host, Sterling on Sunday

imLast week I had the privilege of moderating a panel at the TALKERS conference. Confession: I listen to speech patterns and tones more than words.

The prestigious panel featured Dan Mandis, program director and host, WTN-FM, Nashville; Ross Kaminsky, host KOA, Denver; Phil Boyce, SVP, spoken word format, Salem Media Group/ops VP, New York region/WMCA/AM 970; Josh Leng, CEO, Talk Media Network; and Matt Meany, program director, WABC, New York/Red Apple Media.

Yes, their collective knowledge and experience is unbeatable. They answered questions of great interest: How does iHeart measure social media accomplishments? Should one be fired for social media or podcast content or just for their air work? Establishing a syndication base, how does that happen? Where are the women – kudos to Salem’s Phil Boyce for celebrating their women hosts. What do programmers really look for in hosts? All valuable answers.  See the video of this session here.

Their words aren’t the “win.” The win is the fact that each of these pros has passion, passion and more passion. Their knowledge results in caring, heartfelt, supportive shares. They care about the future; they care about their craft. Programmers have to be optimistic about radio’s positive impact in order for them to do their jobs. Their descriptive tones make radio appealing.

The panel represents radio’s caretakers, gardeners, guides. The executives on the stage reveal qualities and qualifications that become overwhelmingly apparent in their demeanor and speech patterns. That’s what I hear.

Radio does not have to compete or fret over AI.  AI coders have to fret over their inevitable failure to capture or even coldly mimic the depth of emotion and confidence expressed by Matt, Josh, Phil, Ross and Dan. Good luck with that algorithm …losers.

Walter Sabo was the youngest Executive Vice President in the history of NBC. The youngest VP in the history of ABC. He was a consultant to RKO General longer than Bill Drake. Walter was the in-house consultant to Sirius for eight years. He has never written a resume. Contact him at or mobile 646-678-1110. Hear Walter Sterling at

Industry News

TALKERS 2023: Video of “Programming News/Talk Radio in the Digital Era – Part 2” Posted

During the coming days, videos of all of TALKERS 2023’s numerous sessions conducted June 2 at Hofstra University will be posted, continuing today with the panel discussion “Programmingim News/Talk Radio in the Digital Era – Part 2.” The session, sponsored by “Our American Stories,” is introduced by Alex Fife, VP operations, Southeast, iHeartMedia – Total Traffic & Weather Network (pictured at right) and moderated by Walter Sabo, CEO, Sabo Media and host (Walter Sterling) of Sterling on Sunday (pictured above). Panelists (pictured below from left to right) include Dan Mandis, program director and host, WTN-FM, Nashville; Ross Kaminsky, host KOA, Denver; Phil Boyce, SVP, spoken word format, Salem Media Group/ops VP, New York region/WMCA/AM 970; Josh Leng, CEO, Talk Media Network; and Matt Meany, program director, WABC, New York/Red Apple Media.  See the video of this session here