According to a story in New Rochelle’s Daily Voice, Westchester, New York station WVOX-AM has gone out of business 16 months after the passing of owner William O’Shaughnessy, who served as president of Whitney Radio. The station ceased broadcasting on September 7. In July, O’Shaughnessy’s family sold WVIP-FM, New Rochelle to religious broadcaster Hope Media Group for $8.15 million. Read the Daily Voice story here.
Several publications, including trade RBR/TVBR, are reporting that the family of the late William O’Shaughnessy is selling WVIP-FM, New Rochelle, New York, owned by O’Shaughnessy’s Hudson-Westchester Radio, Inc to religious broadcaster Hope Media Group for $8.15 million. WVIP-FM has been airing programming brokered to Caribbean broadcasters. The O’Shaughnessy family still owns the company’s other station – news/talk WVOX-AM. O’Shaughnessy died in May of 2022 at the age of 84.
By Mike Kinosian
NEW YORK — As we reported here on Saturday (5/28), longtime New York radio executive William O’Shaughnessy died this past weekend at his Litchfield, Connecticut home; the 84-year-old O’Shaughnessy had been battling urothelial cancer.
TALKERS publisher Michael Harrison issued the following statement: “Bill O’Shaughnessy was more than an accomplished broadcaster and author. He was a living symbol of the radio medium’s most glorious ideals – both in substance and style – and was one of modern-day America’s most influential and inspirational proponents of the First Amendment.”
During my tenure as Inside Radio’s Special Features & Personality Editor, it was my distinct pleasure to interview the genuinely colorful O’Shaughnessy; edited portions of that conversation appear below.
WBT-AM/FM, Charlotte Announces Promotions and New Contracts for News Staffers. Charlotte news/talk WBT-AM/FM announces that it is “committed to remaining the news and information leader in Charlotte into its second century of broadcasting” with the promotion of veteran news reporter and host Mark Garrison to news director and the addition of a weeknight talk show for senior reporter Brett Jensen. Both Garrison and Jenson have signed new multi-year contracts and Radio One says it will be adding a news producer to its team. In the past two years, WBT has added anchors Anna Erickson, Mark Mueller, and Tony Marino to work alongside Garrison, Jensen, reporter Joe Gillespie, traffic reporters Pam Warner and Boomer Von Cannon, sports reporters Jim Szoke and Sharon Thorsland, and anchors Jeff Atkinson and Mike Dohn. The station says Garrison, long a leader in the Charlotte news community on both radio and television, has demonstrated his commitment to objectivity and journalistic integrity for decades. He will continue to host “Charlotte at Six” each weeknight, delivering his signature storytelling while supervising the day-to-day operations of the WBT newsroom. The station adds that in under four years at WBT, “Breaking Brett Jensen” has become synonymous with breaking news coverage, delivering exclusive content for the Charlotte community like no other. In addition to his reporting duties, Jensen will host “Breaking with Brett Jensen” each weeknight from 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm where he will dive deeper into the stories that he has reported and take calls from listeners. Radio One regional VP and market manager Marsha Landess comments, “Mark and Brett are among the elite news professionals in the country, period. We are thrilled that their new appointments will strengthen the best news department in Charlotte.”
WVOX/WVIP’s William O’Shaughnessy Passes at 84. Longtime New York radio executive William O’Shaughnessy died Saturday (5/28) at his home in Litchfield, Connecticut at the age of 84 after a battle with urothelial cancer. He was widely considered one of the country’s most colorful community broadcasters, well-known for his editorials, commentaries, appreciations, elegies, and character portraits, which inspired The New York Times to declare that “Bill O’Shaughnessy’s commentaries make his New York TV counterparts look like so much mish-mash.” He served as president and editorial director of WVOX and WVIP in New Rochelle, New York – stations with which he was associated for 67 years. He began his career in 1957 at the original WVIP in Northern Westchester, a fabled suburban station owned by Martin Stone, producer of “Howdy Doody” and “Author Meets Critic.” He was the station’s top advertising salesman at the age of 21. He went on to serve as executive assistant to WNEW, New York’s general manager John Van Buren Sullivan. He was a longtime member of the Broadcasters Foundation of America’s board of directors and chairman of its Guardian Fund. TALKERS publisher Michael Harrison issued the following statement, “Bill O’ Shaughnessy was more than an accomplished broadcaster and author. He was a living symbol of the radio medium’s most glorious ideals – both in substance and style – and he was one of modern-day America’s most influential and inspirational proponents of the First Amendment.” Services will take place at Lloyd Maxcy, 16 Shea Place in New Rochelle on Tuesday, May 31 4:00 pm-7:00 pm. The funeral mass will be held at St. Anthony of Padua, 49 South Street, Litchfield on Wednesday, June 1 at 11:30 am. In lieu of flowers, the O’Shaughnessy family would be grateful for a donation in his honor to the Broadcasters Foundation of America: https://broadcastersfoundation.org/donate/
WWO Audio Active Group: The Benefits of Emotion-Based Brand Building. In this week’s blog from the Westwood One Audio Active Group, two different types of advertising copy are studied – rational copy rooted in features and benefits and emotion-based copy that can be used to build brands. The blog reports that according to Binet and Field, the rational approach to advertising (relevant and useful targeted activation) works together with the emotion-based approach that “creates positive feelings and associations” via broad-reach ads that are “interesting and enjoyable.” The report also concludes that: 1) Emotion-based creative builds stronger brands and generates greater business outcomes; 2) Emotions guide and simplify our decision making: Positive emotional responses lead to a positive evaluation of choice; 3) According to authors John Kearon, Orlando Wood, and Tom Ewing, ads should build familiarity, create positive emotion, and make things easy to process; and 4) Podcast listeners prefer funny and entertaining ads but say they are more likely to hear rational podcast ads that communicate features/benefits. See the blog here.
TALKERS News Notes. The Radio Television Digital News Association has completed its announcement of the winners of Regional Edward R. Murrow Awards and Audacy was honored with 23 Regional Edward R. Murrow Awards for outstanding achievements in electronic journalism. Seven Audacy markets were honored including Buffalo, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco and St. Louis and WCCO, Minneapolis; KYW-AM/FM, Philadelphia; KCBS-AM, San Francisco; and KMOX, St. Louis all picked up “Overall Excellence” Awards. The National Edward R. Murrow Awards will be announced later this summer and winners will be honored on October 10 at a gala in New York City…..SiriusXM announces the debut of a new weekly show “Conversations with Joel,” starring Joel Osteen on Thursday, June 2 on Joel Osteen Radio. SiriusXM says, “Through one-on-one conversations with top leaders, athletes, entrepreneurs, celebrities and world-renowned influencers, ‘Conversations with Joel’ will empower listeners to unlock the champion within, overcome challenges, break through barriers, and be their best in every area of life. His scheduled guests include actor, comedian and director Kelsey Grammer; actor and television host Terry Crews; “Good Morning America” host Robin Roberts; CBS Sports broadcaster James Brown; NFL agent Nicole Lynn; “FOX & Friends” host Ainsley Earhardt; television personality and sports reporter Jay Glazer and others…..ABC News releases the trailer for its new three-part podcast series, “Reclaimed: The Story of Mamie Till-Mobley.” Hosted by historian and ABC News contributor Leah Wright-Rigueur, the new series chronicles the life and legacy of Mamie Till-Mobley, whose fight for justice after her son’s brutal murder helped spark the civil rights movement. The first episode of “Reclaimed: The Story of Mamie Till-Mobley” debuts Wednesday, June 1, with new episodes posting weekly…..iHeartRadio and Sound Argument LLC announce the launch of a new documentary podcast titled, “Class Action.” Hosted by Katie Phang, a trial lawyer, anchor, and host for MSNBC and Peacock, the 12-part podcast series will track a diverse cast of outstanding law students who are battling it out in mock trial competitions across the country. The first two episodes will debut on June 7 and can be heard on iHeartRadio and all other major platforms.
Uvalde Massacre Aftermath/Weekend Gun Violence/Gun Control, Russia-Ukraine War, Primaries/Trump & the GOP, Inflation/Recession Fears, SCOTUS Leak Investigation, Monkeypox, and Memorial Day Holiday Among Top News/Talk Stories Over the Weekend. The investigation into the police tactics during the attack on Robb Elementary in Uvalde, Texas, the spate of gun violence in the U.S. over the weekend, and talk about gun control measures; Russian’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine and the conflict’s global effects; the primary races for November midterm elections and Donald Trump’s influence over the GOP; the high price of food and gasoline and concerns about a looming recession; the intensifying investigation into the leak of Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito’s majority opinion overturning Roe v. Wade; the spread of monkeypox; and the Memorial Day holiday were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio over the weekend, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.