Indiana RadioWatch: June 20, 2006

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After an April 12th lightning strike damaged the main transmitter, Larko Communications' Hot AC/WLZQ (101.1fm, South Whitley) recently installed a new transmitter overnight and into the early hours of May 2. Between April 12 and May 2, WLZQ broadcast with about five percent of its normal power.

After a brief eight month stay in mornings at Federated Media's Hot AC/WMEE (97.3fm, Fort Wayne), Steve Kerrigan exits, returning to Dayton, where he'll take mornings at Cox-owned WHKO.

Summit City Radio promotes Rob Livergood from Account Executive to Station Manager for Alternative/WXTW (102.3fm, Auburn) and Scott Howard to Station Manager for Adult Hits/WXKE (102.9fm, Huntington) under GSM Vori Dhabolt. Dhabolt remains Station Manager for all other Summit City stations except for Standards/WGL (1250am, Fort Wayne) which is managed by CEO/GM Kristine Foate.

Summit City Radio's Classic Rock/WCKZ (94.1fm, Roanoke) adds American Biker Minute Envision Radio's "American Biker Minute" feature.

Where Are They Now (Part 1)? Former Alternative/WXTW (102.3fm, Auburn) APD and overnight voicetrack guy Matt Goshert is now afternoons at WXEG (103.9) in Dayton, Ohio, on-the-air as "Jericho."

Where Are They Now (Part 2)? Former CHR/WNHT (96.3fm, Churubusco) morning co-host Davin Fesmire is now doing nights at KALC in Denver, Colorado.

Where Are They Now (Part 3)? Former then-WKJG (Channel 33, Fort Wayne) News Director Bob Rockstroh was recently named ND at WTIC-TV in Hartford, Connecticut. Rockstroh was Assistant News Director at this FOX affiliate for the last four years.


If you're keeping score on the right side of the South Bend AM dial, you've noticed several changes: 1490am switched from long-time calls WNDV and is now Sports/WDND (1490am, South Bend), an ESPN Radio affiliate. 1620am remains WWLV with its Soft AC "Love Songs" format. An IRW reader tells us that 1580am is now WHLY and was recently silent, but is back on the air with country music. Let's focus on that for a moment: After further investigation, we're told that WHLY 1580am is owned by Times Communications, Inc., and had a Time Brokerage Agreement (TBA) with Artistic Media Partners. We are told that the TBA ended on 17 May, and Times Communications now has sole control of the station. This leaves at least two questions:

1. 1620am on the expanded band replaces 1580 after a five year period, which recently expired. The expiration means either 1580am or 1620am should go silent permanently. Why are both stations on the air?

2. Was Times Communications' sale of 1620am to Artistic legal, without the 1580am in the deal?

Several calls to Times Communications, Inc. President William Dobslaw were not returned.

Here's an update from Citadel's Country/WWKI (100.5fm, Kokomo) as they recover from a fire in late April. PD Dave Broman told IRW:

"Fire and Flood staff have been cleaning, ozoning and painting almost non-stop since the day after the fire. The demolition of the seriously damaged structural elements has begun, to include replacement of part of the roof. Asset Recovery Technologies of Chicago has been here all week cleaning the sensitive electronic equipment to minimize the long-term effects of the smoke. It's a little disconcerting to watch someone tear apart a brand-new, multi-thousand-dollar auxiliary transmitter and dip it in a vat of what looks like soap and water. It's actually a specialized cleaning process for high-tech gear, NOT soap and water. But still not something you expect to see. The two big projects that have to be completed before we can move back in are the reconstruction (to code) of the electrical power system. Much of the internal power distribution was damaged, and the electrical inspector said the whole system had to be replaced before we could reconnect to the power grid. That job will take about 30 days from now. At the same time, we have to replace all of the audio, switching, network and antenna lines. The equipment in the transmitter room survived, but all of the cabling into and out of that room, which ran overhead, was burnt to a crackly crunch.

We're continuing to broadcasting from the KI Trailer Park. It's not as cushy as our building, but engineer Chip Longshore quickly built up a workable system that most listeners can't distinguish from the old KI. At least their ears can't tell a difference. The whole staff has kept us going almost as if nothing happened. And that's the bottom line, isn't it?"

Federated Media Rhythmic CHR/WYPW (95.7fm, Nappanee) night guy Mike Jax tacks on MD responsibilities under PD Chuck Wright ("DJ Manic").

Former KSCS (Dallas, Texas) weekender Cody Austin joins Federated Media Country/WBYT (100.7fm, Elkhart) as morning co-host alongside Hummer and Deb.


The FCC and a local Lafayette radio station are not pointing fingers, but Purdue University's WBAA (920am, 101.3fm; both West Lafayette) recently received a letter from the FCC indicating that the stations had not renewed their licenses. Both licenses expired on August 1, 2004. WBAA GM Dan Skinner tells IRW that the renewals were done online and Skinner printed everything off as he went through the process. WBAA believes this was a mixup and note that their Washington DC lawyers are already handling the matter with the FCC.

Vazquez Development's WIMS (1420am Michigan City) and WJOB (1230am, Hammond) ended joint operations on June 1. Alexis Vazquez Dedelow and James Dedelow will continue running WJOB while former WJOB morning man Ric Federighi (along with his brothers Marc and Scott) will own and run WIMS. Both stations were purchased in March, 2001 for $1.2 million from bankrupt St. George Broadcasting. We're told that Ric Federighi is looking for a new location for WIMS. Also, Federighi is hiring local people to staff WIMS, as he wants to "return the station to Michigan City residents."

Jeff Sanders exits Radio One Communications. He was MD and mornings at Hot AC/WZVN (107.1fm, Lowell) and middays at Country/WLJE (105.5fm, Valparaiso).


Mid-America Radio's Soft AC/WXXC (106.9fm, Marion) changes format to Classic Hits as "Double X C" under OM Vanessa Miller. The format changed happened Saturday May 20 at 10am. The last song (appropriately) was "Goodbye Girl" by Hootie and the Blowfish, and the first song of the new format was "Don't Forget Me (When I'm Gone)" by Glass Tiger. Core artists for the new format include Aerosmith, Huey Lewis and the News, Hall and Oates, Rod Stewart, John Mellencamp, Heart, and Elton John. The new airstaff lineup is:

Mornings: Matthew Paul (from sister station WZWZ in Kokomo)
Middays: Vanessa Miller
Afternoons: Pat Moore (from afternoons at the former WTPI in Indianapolis)
Nights: Steve Morris (from sister WARU in Peru)
Overnights: Sammy Edmonds

After 3 years of consolidated operations in Muncie, Backyard Broadcasting has re-launched sales operations in their Daleville facility which serves the Anderson (Madison County area) for WERK/WURK (104.9fm, Muncie; 101.7fm, Elwood) and MAX (WHTY/WHTI) (93.5fm, Hartford City; 96.7fm, Hannah) as well as News Talk 1240 WHBU (1240am, Anderson). WLBC/WXFN ( 104.1fm, Muncie; 1340am, Muncie) sales operations remain in Muncie. Backyard Indiana VP/Market Manager Brett Beshore tells IRW: "In my opinion, cluster selling has stymied our industry's growth. Therefore, we're getting back to the basics with separate sales staff's and dedicated managers on stations. We've re-launched our Daleville sales operation to cover our primary market more efficiently."

Country/WIFE-FM (100.3fm, Connersville) flips format to oldies. No word on when Radio One will complete its acquisition of WIFE-FM and when the station will relocate to Norwood, Ohio.


Emmis Chairman/CEO Jeff Smulyan recently made a proposal to buy all outstanding public shares of the company, thereby taking it private. His non-binding proposal says the share price he will pay is $15.25/share in cash. The deal values the total common equity of the company at $567 million and an enterprise value of $1.4 billion (including outstanding debt and preferred stock). Opposition has already emerged from several institutional investors who have said they would vote against Smulyan's offer. Also, at least two lawsuits have emerged seeking an injunction and damages related to the offer.

The sale of Susquehanna to Cumulus closed on Friday 5 May. Nine people were let go after the sale. Here's a complete list of those who have left which includes several others we have heard about:

Eileen Wooster - Morning co-host, WISG
Larry Downes - Director of New Media (Inside Radio reports that he recently joined Saga as Director of Interactive Media for radio, TV, and state networks.)
Rob Reel - Overnights, WFMS
Johnny George - Creative Services Director
Mike Orr - News Director
Olivia Clavio - Webstream Commercial Traffic
Angie Holliday - Sales/Promotions Assistant
Dominique Cummins - Traffic/Billing
Max Turner - Regional VP/Engineering
Jeff Angel - Promotions Assistant

Russ Dodge exits Raven Broadcasting's Sports/WXLW (950am, Indianapolis) for the GM chair at Continental Broadcasting Spanish duo WSYW/WEDJ (810am, Indianapolis; 107.1fm, Danville). Also exiting WXLW is Dodge's assistant Stephanie Tatay-Myers. At WSYW/WEDJ, Tatay-Myers is Marketing Director.

Last Friday, WFYI (90.1fm, Indianapolis) was off the air most of the day for antenna work. Gavin Lesnick's story in the Indianapolis Star attributes the down time to replacing a thirty year old antenna with a faulty de-icing system.

On Wednesday June 7, the Indiana Court of Appeals threw out half of the convictions against Richard Brown, the man who pretended to be an employee of Emmis' CHR/WNOU (93.1fm, Indianapolis). WRTV-TV reports that Brown will be resentenced. The court overturned Brown's convictions on three counts of criminal confinement, stating that Indiana's criminal confinement law is "unconstitutionally vague."

Tim "Rayne" Rainey joins Emmis CHR/WNOU (93.1fm, Indianapolis) as APD/MD/night host, as of 1 June. He was last in a similar role at KHTT in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Classic Hits/WKLU (101.9fm, Brownsburg) adds two HD channels - HD2 is "Gold" oldies and HD3 is "The Club" which is party music of the late 1970's and early 1980's. Both streams are also heard on WKLU's website at

Before we leave Knue Road, WKLU PD Libby Farr adds Dr. Michael Lynn for weekend (Saturday and Sunday morning) duties.

The AFC South champion Indianapolis Colts move their radio flagship from Clear Channel Rock/WFBQ (94.7fm, Indianapolis) to Emmis N-T/WIBC (1070am, Indianapolis) and will simulcast games on sister-Country/WLHK (97.1fm, Shelbyville). This deal gives Emmis the broadcast rights to every sports team in Indianapolis (NBA Pacers, Indy Racing League, WNBA Fever, along with Indiana University basketball and football).

Radio and Records reports that Clear Channel has given free Boston Acoustics HD Radios to local media and VIP's. Clear Channel/Indianapolis OM Marty Bender tells Radio and Records that audio quality from their Sports/WNDE (1260am, Indianapolis) is far superior to the "traditional sound shortcomings of present-day AM radio receivers."


Crossroads' Oldies/WAXI (104.9fm, Rockville) adds Ray Leach to it's on air line up as "C-Ray." The "Oldies 104.9" airstaff lineup is:

Mornings: Ronn Mott (6:00AM - 10:00AM)
Middays: BT (10:00AM - 1:00PM) (not your editor)
Early Afternoons: Gen (1:00PM - 4:00PM) (from mornings at sister WBOW-FM)
Afternoons: C-Ray (4:00PM - 7:00PM)
Nights + Overnights: Scott Shannon's True Oldies Channel
Weekends: Milo Miller (Saturdays 3:00PM - 6:00PM), and various syndicated programs.

Crossroads' WAXI/WBOW-FM (102.7fm, Terre Haute) OM/PD Chris Carter adds PD duties for sister Country-Rock hybrid WSDM-FM (92.7fm, Brazil).

Crossroads' WBOW-FM (102.7fm, Terre Haute) replaces Gen on the morning show with Doug Edge and the morning show is now "The New Morning Buzz with Chris (Carter) and Doug."

Flipping through the Terre Haute TV news, we see that LIN-owned WTHI-TV (Channel 10, Terre Haute [CBS]) News Director Mark Carros exits after just over two years. Also, Nexstar's WTWO-TV (Channel 2, Terre Haute [NBC]) News Director Kathy Dash exits. She is replaced by anchorman Tom McClanahan. McClanahan will continue 6pm anchoring duties but give up the 11pm shift.


Radio One Alternative simulcast WLRS/WLRX (105.1, Shepherdsville, Kentucky; 104.3fm, Charlestown) syndicated morning show Lex and Terry exit as of 15 May.


Country/WJCP (92.7fm, Austin) is sold by Pieratt Communications to BK Media, LLC (Blair and Kelly Trask) for $850,000 plus a $170,000 seller note. Marty Pieratt slides the WJCP call letters and country format, replacing "ESPN Radio" Sports/WNVI (1460am, North Vernon). Pieratt tells IRW "It's nice to do business with a good, independent operator like Blair [Trask]"


A tip of the IRW hat to South Central Communications as they celebrate 60 years in business. SCC has five Evansville radio stations (thirteen total), ten "Muzak" franchises and two television stations.

Former South Central CHR/WSTO (96.1fm, Owensboro, Kentucky) PD Stan Priest is now PD at WKSS in Hartford, Connecticut. Replacing Priest is Jason Addams. Addams last was OM/Mornings at WHZZ in Lansing, Michigan. Finally at WSTO, APD/MD/PM Drive guy Josh Strickland exits.

In early May, C&W/WQTY (93.3fm, Linton) dropped its simulcast with sister WWBL (106.5fm, Washington) and segues to Oldies as "WQTY Oldies 93.3."

Vincennes University is looking for a lessee for its WFML (96.7fm, Vincennes), a 3000 watt commercially licensed radio station. Interested parties should contact Phil Smith at 812.888.5830 or via e-mail at psmith at vinu dot edu.

Employment Opportunities

David Letterman - Condoleezza Rice - Joe Montana

All came through Indiana on their way to success! Coincidence? We think not.

Federated Media Radio - WMEE Fort Wayne is seeking an outstanding morning show or talent!

Do you believe in yourself and working hard?
Do you have a sense of humor and a positive attitude on life?
Do you have a quirky, emotional style that your listeners and co-workers find infectious?
Do you have the experience, passion, curiosity, and awareness to win on one of America's finest stations?

Heritage Market Leading Hot AC WMEE is in search of morning talent to continue our journey to the next level. This is a great gig! All the tools are here: 50K signal, a real promotions budget, family friendly environment and a strong support staff! This is a position for those who understand leadership and know how to "Dance in the End Zone"! Federated Media is a family owned; Indiana based company, and was recognized in Radio Ink by Dave 'Giff' Gifford as one of the top thirty US 'Radio Companies Worth Working For!' Check out what we do at

No beginners, fallen stars or baggage handlers. Professionals only please!

Please send CD & resume to:
Rob Kelley - FM Operations Manager
2915 Maples Rd.
Fort Wayne, IN 46816

Or email package to rkelley at federatedmedia dot com. No phone calls please. EOE

Artistic Media Partners is looking for a Station Manager for South Bend's #1 station and the home of Notre Dame Football, U93 (WNDV). Responsibilities include overall station management, motivating staff, setting and obtaining sales goals, marketing and promotions, hiring, training, and long-term planning. If you have three or more years of sales management experience and would enjoy working closely with the University of Not re Dame, this position might be right for you! Artistic Media is an EOE. Qualified candidates should send resume to Greg De Rue, 3371 Cleveland Road, Suite 310, South Bend, IN 46628 - or via e-mail to greg at u93 dot com.

Crossroads Communications is looking for promotions staff, telemarketers, local board ops, and weekend on air talent for all its stations. Anyone with interest should forward on air/promotional interest to

Chris Carter OM
1301 Ohio Street
Terre Haute, IN. 47807

Sales Telemarketing
Doug Edge GM
1301 Ohio Street
Terre Haute, IN. 47807

No telephone calls please. Women and Minorities are strongly encouraged to apply. Crossroads Communications is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

The Indianapolis NBC affiliate, WTHR is looking for a content-driven producer to lead six hours of live coverage on Weekend Sunrise. This producer should have the ability to juggle breaking news, as well as have an acute interest in sports and community events. We need a self-starter who is organized and has the ability to use all the tools. You will direct a large staff including anchors, contributors, assignment editors, reporters, photographers and a writer to support the number one weekend morning newscast in Indianapolis.

A Bachelor's degree and a minimum of 3 years producing in TV news preferred. Qualified candidates, please submit your resume to:

Human Resources Job #26-674
1000 N. Meridian St.
Indianapolis, IN 46204

or e-mail to resumes at wthr dot com.

WTHR is an EOE.

That's it for this issue. See you in a week!

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All pages Copyright Blaine Thompson. Articles, photos, corrections, and other contributions should be e-mailed to the editors.