Indiana RadioWatch: February 29, 2016

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In a story you will first read about here, Continental Broadcast Group's Spanish Oldies/WSYW (810am, Indianapolis) "Pescador Radio" will flip formats at Noon. The new format will be Classic Hits, picking up where sister Regional Mexican/WEDJ (107.1fm, Danville) leaves off: 1980s, 1990s and 2000s music. WSYW will retain its call letters, but become "La Pantera" ("The Panther"). Also, WSYW will carry Futbol de Primera and The COPA America Centenario. Northeast

We remember former Indiana broadcaster Steve Avellone, who had a heart attack and died last Thursday at age 60. After starting his radio career in Florida (WLVE/"Love 94" in Miami, and WIVY-FM "Y 103" Jacksonville), Mr. Avellone came to Fort Wayne. With Russ Oasis, Mr. Avellone co-owned one of the earliest 1970s formatted radio stations in America: WFWI-FM (92.3fm, Fort Wayne). Mr. Avellone also served as GM for 4 years, until the men sold WFWI-FM to Federated Media for over $4 million in 1997. After "92.3 The Fort," Mr. Avellone returned to Florida, working with Cox Radio, WLOQ-FM/Orlando, Clear Channel/Orlando and JVC Broadcasting. In between Cox and WLOQ, Mr. Avellone was Director of Sales and Director of National Sales for the Oasis Radio Group radio stations in Fort Wayne (WBTU, WJFX, then-WVBB) and Indianapolis (WKLU). Over the weekend, IRW spoke with several of Steve's colleagues:

Russ Oasis: "Steve was one of the most ambitious radio people I've ever worked with. He was my partner at WFWI in Fort Wayne and the GM of the station. He had a terrific work ethic and was always fun to be around. He'll be sorely missed."

Bart Johnson (then-WKLU GM): "I had the pleasure of working with Steve for a couple of years at WKLU. I've never met anyone with as much energy and passion for selling radio that him. Steve was the kind of guy who never met a stranger, he was always upbeat and moving at 100-MPH. His death comes as a complete shock. My prayers go out to his wife Terri, and their two sons." (Mr. Johnson now works for Continental Broadcast Group in Indianapolis, as GM of their WNTS(AM), WSYW(AM), and WEDJ-FM.)

Tony Coles (then-WFWI PD): "Steve was the first person I met in Fort Wayne. My first meal in town was with Steve and his family. He was more than a boss; he was a mentor and a friend. He played a role in so many careers, but more importantly, he touched so many lives. We are all better people because of Steve. I will miss him greatly." (Mr. Coles now works for iHeartMedia as their EVP/Programming, Central Division.)

Phil Becker (then-Oasis Radio Group/Fort Wayne GM): "Steve and I worked together on 3 separate occasions for 2 different companies. His passion, energy and extreme love for our industry is something I always admired. He was a rare breed that loved radio as much on his first day as he did his last day.

I'll miss Steve's Russ Oasis impersonations and infections fire. There will be only one Steve Avellone." (Mr. Becker now works for Alpha Media as their VP/Programming.)

Where Are They Now? Former WPTA-TV Local Sales Manager Charity Freeman becomes GM at WNWO-TV in Toledo, Ohio.


After fifteen years, Quincy Broadcasting's FOX affiliate WSJV-TV (Channel 28, Elkhart) morning news anchor Steve DuVal will exit on March 11, to join Thor Motor Coach. There, Mr. DuVal will launch a video production division. Longtime Assistant Chief Photographer and Morning News Photographer Tom Shaw will join Mr. DuVal at Thor Motor Coach.


The nifty online RAMP ("Radio and Music Pros") has a story in this morning's issue about Entercom's AC/WNTR (107.9fm, Indianapolis). Last Friday, the high voltage transformer failed in WNTR's transmitter. When engineers determined the solution, they found the only replacement part available in Wichita, Kansas, about 700 miles west. "107.9 The Mix" morning co-host Tom Davis volunteered to drive to Wichita and get the part, so the engineering staff didn't have to make the ten hour drive each way. Of course, Mr. Davis used The Mix Facebook page to extensively chronicle the trip.

Mark Glover exits as one of the Executive Producers at Media General's CW affiliate WISH-TV (Channel 8, Indianapolis). Mr. Glover joins WBRC-TV in Birmingham, Alabama, as their Assistant News Director. Before joining WISH-TV, Mr. Glover was the news director for six years at WEHT-TV in Evansville (and, he's been an anchor/reporter there.)


In early October 2001, we had the sad duty to report the shutdown of all Contemporary Media-owned radio stations in Terre Haute and in Missouri. In Terre Haute, those radio stations were on 640am, 1230am and 107.5fm. In 2004, the FCC converted the 107.5fm allocation from commercial to noncommercial. In 2010, the FCC opened up a one-week filing window for applicants. A dozen organizations applied, including universities, religious organizations and nonprofits. Later on in 2010, three applicants remained: Terre Haute Seventh Day Adventist Church, Terre Haute Bible Baptist Church, and Light House Mission Ministries. Last week, the three applicants reached an agreement on the 107.5fm allocation. Terre Haute Seventh Day Adventist Church will operate 107.5fm with 26,000 watts at 689 feet, from the former WZZQ (107.5fm) tower, just off US-150, northwest of Terre Haute (the tower houses an FM, an FM translator, and an LPTV). The settlement means that the Terre Haute Seventh Day Adventist Church will reimburse the other two organizations for their incurred expenses.


The FCC approved New Albany Broadcasting's Regional Mexican/WNDA (1570am, New Albany) purchase of translator CP W270CR (101.9fm, Okolona, Kentucky) from Celebration Ministries. It's now 150 watt translator CP W270CR (101.9fm, New Albany), with a proposed transmitter site on the same tower as multiple FM and LPTV stations, in Floyds Knob.

The FCC approved the CP for translator W297AU (107.3fm, Arcadia) to move to North Vernon, shift frequencies to 97.7fm, and rebroadcast Oldies/WJCP (1460am, North Vernon)


Krista McEnany joins the weather team at Raycom Media's NBC affiliate WFIE-TV (Channel 14, Evansville). Ms. McEnany earned Bachelor's degrees at Purdue University.

This Week in Indiana Radio History

February 28: In 1997, the sale of WFWI (92.3fm, Fort Wayne) closed from Edgewater Radio to Pathfinder Communications. In 2010, Mike Pruitt passed away. Pruitt was the transmitter engineer for Indianapolis' WISH-TV (before that, he worked at WTHR-TV). He also was a transmitter site engineer for LeSea Broadcasting (1993 through 2004).

March 1: In 1993, 96.9fm, Bremen signed on. (It's now WHPZ). In 2000, Terre Haute's WJSH (1300am) flipped formats from Oldies to Sports. Also, sister WSDM (1130am) flipped from Gospel to Sports. In 2002, WWWD (96.3fm, Churubusco) switched formats from Country to CHR, as "Hits 96." The call letters changed to WHTD. In 2003, South Bend's WUBU (106.3fm) flipped formats from Urban AC to Smooth Jazz. Finally, in 2013, WFFT-TV (Channel 55, Fort Wayne) returns to FOX affiliation, after roughly 18 months as an independent.

March 3: In 1969, Indiana University's WTIU-TV signs on in Bloomington, Indiana, as a member station of National Educational Television.

March 4: In 1993, WFWI (92.3fm, Fort Wayne) signs on. In 2005, Dave Bailey, VP/GM of WTHI/WWVR television and radio in Terre Haute retires.

March 5: In 1970, WNIN-TV signs on in Evansville. In 1984, 1180am signed on in Newburgh. Today, it's WGAB.

Radio Spotlight

Here's part two of interviews with several broadcasters that worked at WTHI(AM) in Terre Haute. Today, we interview Ronn Mott.

Who were your early DJ or radio station influences? (Perhaps what lead you to "catch the radio bug."?)

When I was at KOIL, Larry Monroe was my PD. He's been Gordon McClendon's programmer and I learned a lot from him. I guess I caught the bug listening to Chicago; WGN was a big favorite of mine. So was WLS, back when they did a lot of live music with programs like the National Barn Dance and Captain Stubby's musical shows.

What was your first radio job?

My first job was at WPRS in Paris, Illinois, for Bright Red Radio. The owner brought me a record by Les Paul and Mary Ford. The record company was pushing a teen appeal as the "A" side. I didn't like it, so I flipped it and played the "B" side. It made the boss mad. When the "B" side later topped the charts, I clipped the Billboard Hot 100 and taped it to his door. The song was Via Con Dios.

What lead each of you to WTHI?

After the Kennedy assassination, I thought there might be something more important than the next Beatles release, so I opted to come home (from KOIL in Des Moines) and go to college. WTHI Vice President Ben Falber didn't like the AM program director and he hired me directly to do the morning show. About six months later, the PD left to go into a photo processing business and Ben made me PD. I didn't really have any ambition to be the PD. I was rather pleased to just do the morning show and be a collegian the rest of the day (at Indiana State University.) I think Ben liked me because I had no interest in being on TV.

What made WTHI unique and successful?

The main competition was WBOW. They had lost direction in which way they were going. One of WTHI's strengths was having a strong staff that wasn't told what to do, but everybody had ideas and we shared them and everyone wanted to be on the team. We were also left to our own devices by management, which was consumed by its TV station. The VP's stepson being one of our biggest fans didn't hurt that.

What made each of you unique on the air?

Ron Mott: I tried to stay on top of what was going on in town and talk about it. I was witty, but I wasn't a jokester. I tried to keep it sharp.

Dick Randall: First of all, he had a great voice; some of are blessed by birthright. Even when he didn't feel good, he sounded good. He was especially gifted at putting together great commercials and promosl. With that booming baritone voice, we had him in the right spot where women were listening. They liked what they heard.

Andy Bickel: Andy was introspective. He was always thinking, whether it applied to radio or not. What was great about him was you never knew what he was going to say or do. He was a surprise and the audience took him that way.

Loren Owens: Loren was solid. He was never a minute late, even if he was meeting you for coffee on a weekend. He began to work on his program very early on. He's the first guy I ever worked with who did a lot of show prep. The rest of us followed his lead, but LO worked harder than the others. He could make a silly prize into a big deal. Once, we gave away a year's supply of chewing gum - a stick per day; 365 pieces, but he made it sound like a brand new car. When Music to Watch Girls By was a hit, we printed up girl watching licenses and he gave them away.

We were clever and smart. We loved to flirt, but we knew our limits.

Ron, how about a parting shot?

I was fortunate to be the oldest and I had the best group of young people what you could ever possibly have in a market the size of Terre Haute. I just did my job and got along with my staff and was fortunate. It was a great deal of fun.

Employment Opportunities

Lake City Media Group (an Equal Opportunity Employer) is searching for a News & Content Director for our local News & Information Station, "News Now Warsaw" (1480-AM & 99.7-FM). The ideal candidate has a clear understanding of fair, balanced and non-sensationalized news radio. Applicant should have a general understanding of news, government and law and the ability to build a successful newscast from start to finish. The perfect candidate will lead our news department and be willing to do what it takes to get the accurate story first. Duties include writing and generating news for on-air and web, interviewing news makers, producing local news casts, attending press conferences and/or meetings, monitoring local scanner traffic for lead generation and will take ownership in our acclaimed news department. Minimum of 1-2 years of small market on-air news experience preferred. Send resume, salary requirements, audio and writing samples to Program Director Kris Lake at klake at lakecitymediagroup dot com. No phone calls, please. Lake City Media Group is part of Federated Media.

Are you a weekender in a bigger market? Night jock in a smaller market looking to move up? Just looking for a change? We're looking for a fresh, up-and-coming talent that relates to the CHR night audience.

We're HOT 107.9 in Fort Wayne, a Mainstream CHR that believes in personality radio and great content between our listeners' favorite songs. Former HOT jocks are on-air in Los Angeles, Seattle, Minneapolis, San Antonio, Dallas, Memphis, and Portland.

We want someone witty, interesting and passionate. Hard-working who will do what it takes to win and create must-hear radio every night. Your life should play out on social media when you're not in the studio (and of course when you are as well). Basic video editing/graphics skills are a great asset!

All social media links
A few examples of digital work (video, graphics, posts that got good interaction, etc.)
Anything else that makes you stand out.

Put "Hot 107.9 Nights" in the subject line and send it to: jobathot at gmail dot com

No calls please. If you sent your stuff to us recently, no need to resend. We will begin contacting candidates this week, so don't delay. Adams Radio Group is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

89.1 WBOI (NPR News and Diverse Music), and Classical 94.1 WBNI seek a Chief Engineer for the two public radio stations serving Fort Wayne and Northeast Indiana. We are a growing organization in the process of relocating to a new facility in two-to-three years, which will include substantial investments in new equipment, new studios and production facilities. You will be an important part of our team while enjoying considerable autonomy and responsibility as our Chief Engineer.

The Chief Engineer is responsible for all technical and building operations and maintenance. Position reports directly to General Manager, and works closely with the Program Director and other staff. Occasional night and weekend work is necessary, with availability to respond 24/7 as needed. You must have the technical knowledge to operate and maintain two radio stations and all associated operations, be able to climb ladders, work in small spaces and have the ability to lift 50 pounds. Excellent interpersonal skills and the ability to communicate technical issues to non-technical personnel are important. The ability to solve problems, think creatively, work independently, and troubleshoot is highly valued.


AASEET Degree or similar
5 or more years of radio broadcast engineering experience
Knowledge of FM broadcast and STL transmission systems including combiners
Ability to troubleshoot and repair FM and HD transmitters and associated equipment
Minimum 3 years of experience with Broadcast Electronics AudioVault Delivery Systems for both time-based and control-based satellite automation
New construction involving studio and transmitter sites
Familiarity with FCC rules and regulations
Network administration and IT support for Microsoft Windows Server and Windows 7 & 8 operating systems
PBX management
Drafting budgets for expenses, capital expenditures, and projects
Valid driver's license and means of transportation

The following experience will be particularly beneficial:
Work with AudioVault FLeX
Experience with Axia Livewire or Wheatstone Wheat-Net audio over IP solutions
Knowledge of IP based phone systems
Familiarity with Microsoft Exchange
Traffic and music software automation integration
Engineering remote broadcasts and live performances
Experience with FTP delivery systems

Please include resume and narrative/cover letter detailing how your experience relates to the job duties and qualifications of this position.

Position is open until filled.

E-mail resume and cover letter to: Peter Dominowski, President and General Manager, at: pdominowski at nipr dot fm.

We are an Equal Opportunity Employer, and do not discriminate with regard to race, gender, ethnicity, religion, or sexual orientation.

WFNI and WIBC-HD2 is looking for an experienced sports talk pro in both the on-air and administrative realms to join the staff as an Executive Producer. This person must be able to perform a variety of tasks on a daily basis, primarily from a behind-the-scenes standpoint, but also might be needed to fill-in when necessary in a show-host role and/or a sports anchor standpoint.

This position would be working on a daily basis with the Program Director of both The Fan and 107.5 ESPN. This person would also be interacting on a daily basis with all aspects of the Fan staff including producers, talk-show hosts, and part-time board-ops.

Responsibilities include but are not limited to:
* Write, produce, edit and update content for on air, website and social media on a daily basis.
* Curating sound, video and text from wire services, TV partners, and other news sources
* Writing and/or recording sports updates for The Fan, 107.5 ESPN, and Network Indiana
* Development of producers
* Fill-in duties for talk show hosts when necessary
* Administrative duties like affidavits, Tag Station responsibilities, working with Triton digital
* Scheduling part-timers for evening and weekend shifts on the Fan and 107.5 ESPN
* Other duties as assigned

Considered, candidates should meet the following requirements:
* Thrive in high pressure situations to meet extremely tight deadlines
* Possess a firm knowledge of digital audio editing software
* Pay close attention to detail
* Must be highly organized
* Be available and flexible with work hours/duties
* Can be a positive member of a tight-knit team
* Able to work independently with little supervision
* Working knowledge of Wide Orbit on-air operating system preferred
* Working knowledge of Windows, Outlook, Word, Excel

Education/Experience: * 2-5 years overall radio experience, sports talk radio experience preferred * High school diploma or general education degree (GED)

To Apply: Please apply online at and send resume with any pertinent on-air, news demos and writing samples to grakestraw at indy dot emmis dot com.

No phone calls please. Emmis Communications is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

WIBC/Network Indiana is looking for a multi-media platform news talent who can gather and interpret content on multiple platforms, including digital (web, social media) and on-air. The position requires the production and gathering of text, images, audio/video, etc. The ideal candidate will have strong delivery, a versatile mindset for varying tasks, and be a natural storyteller.

Please apply online at

Please send your resume' and air check materials to cedavis at indy dot emmis dot com.

G101-3, the world's most interactive radio station, is seeking its next Midday host. You'll do live middays on The G (Adult Top 40) and voicetrack evenings on our A/C sister station. Can you do a great show with phones, remotes and appearances, plus keep yourself plugged into our historic community? We need someone that can hit the ground running! If you think you can handle local, creative radio in a non-corporate environment and blend in with our talented yet dysfunctional staff you can E-mail your info to rickduncan at g1013 dot com ("Midday/Promotions" in the subject line)

Whitewater Broadcasting is proud to be an Equal Opportunity Employer.

Federated Media is currently accepting applications for the position of Promotions and Events Coordinator for our South Bend Radio Group.

The position encompasses all facets of the radio business on-air, on-line and in person. It requires multi-tasking along with managing people and your own personal time. Problem Solving Skills required.

As Promotions and Events coordinator you will be responsible for, but not limited to:

Working hand in hand with Program Directors and General Sales Managers to plan, schedule and execute contests, promotions, and events.

Hiring and scheduling of part time employees for live broadcasts and events

Implementing Interactive elements of marketing campaigns and events. (mobile, email, online, social media)

Making sure the listener experience at live broadcasts & events is a memorable one

This is a very enjoyable job but requires you to bring your best to the office every day. It is a job where no two days are alike and will be a job that is always evolving to meet the demands of each station's needs. Requires working on evenings and weekends as needed. Two to three years' experience and/or marketing degree preferred.

Interested? Contact Stephanie Michel at smichel at federatedmedia dot com.

Confidentiality assured. Federated Media is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

Indiana Country - WKKG - South Central Indiana's #1 country heritage station, is looking for our next morning show superstar. If you can deliver an upbeat, LOCALLY relatable, music-driven show then send me your best stuff. Local is how we win, so you'll be expected to seek out ways to get involved in the community. We offer a competitive salary, great benefits including 401(k), excellent work environment and an exceptional community. E-mail your resume and demo to John Foster, Station Manager at jfoster at wkkg dot com. White River Broadcasting is proud to be an Equal Opportunity Employer.

That's all for this issue. Thank you for your continued support.

Blaine Thompson
Indiana RadioWatch

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