1. How did you wind up at WAWZ?
I was in Chicago at The
Fish and very comfortable. John Frost, with Audience
Development told me about STAR 99.1 in New York and
that he was working with it. I thought it was really
cool that a CCM station was launching in NY.
However, they already had a morning show, so I
prayed for the success of the station that it would
touch lives of people in the New York area. Several
months later, the morning slot was open and I was
approached. I prayed about it and felt a strong
calling to be here. Well, here I am! God's Hand.
2. What are the challenges that you face in
your current programming position?
The challenge is to
bring a mainstream thought process to the station
while at the same time honoring God and having fun.
Everything from promotions to music to sales to
contesting needs to be built so that it is listener
friendly. There has never been a station like this
in New York, so the music to lots of people is
unfamiliar. We have a need to train our listeners
about this music. Once they listen to it, they love
3.How do you make your station competitive in America's largest
Our presentation on
air must be as good, if not better, than anything
else on the dial in New York. Every time the mic is
cracked open, the on-air personalities on STAR 99.1
entertain. We are all about pop culture, using the
filter of being safe for the whole family. I'd like
to use this forum to say that I have some of the
best talent in CCM radio working for me. Scott
Taylor, Beth Bacall and Keith Stevens are real
What is the criteria that determines if a song
receives airplay on your station?
Any song that makes it
on the playlist forces it's way on it. That's
something that Chuck Knapp at KTIS in the Twin
Cities taught me. The song must be so big that it
can't be ignored! He taught me that when we worked
at KS95 in the Twin Cities, a secular AC station.
kind of promotions work best for your station?
Promotions that work
great are the ones that put us in front of our
listeners. Every time that we shake a hand or kiss a
baby is a vote for us. Concerts are always winners,
like Autumn Blaze with Third Day. We sold out
Continental Airlines Arena in the Meadowlands. We
were in front of 15,000 people. Of course, bumper
stickers and t-shirts and stuff like that is
wonderful. We haven't done billboards and TV yet, so
stay tuned for that!!
6. How do
you think Christian Record labels can better serve
When working with
promoters, strive to get venues other than churches.
Churches are great, but if record companies want to
grow this music, more mainstream thinking has to be
used. Curb records is doing a great job of it, as
others are. MARKET, MARKET, MARKET! Record companies
have a huge stake in the success of this music, so
there must be more management of where the concerts
7. In your
opinion what are the biggest obstacles facing
Christian radio today?
Don't be afraid of
success. Too many Christian radio stations think
that if you win, you're not doing God's work, that
if you win you're being too materialistic. I beg to
differ. We live IN this world, not OF it. I believe
that if you win, you are spreading the word of our
Savior to more people. Get out there and promote and
act like you MUST win! Get some ratings while
you believe is the primary role of the Christian
radio air personality today?
Be real. Have fun. Draw
an emotion from your listener.
any) other Christian radio stations do you consider
as innovators today?
I think all the Salem
Fish stations are doing an absolutely fantastic job.
Chuck Finney is their national PD and deserves all
the credit in the world for what he's doing, not
just for the Fish stations, but for his local one in
Dallas/Fort Worth, KLTY as well. KTIS in the Twin
Cities, KSBJ in Houston, the WAY FM group, KTSY in
Boise, there are so many, and I know that I'll be
reading this a week from now saying to myself that I
forgot to mention about a dozen more.
do you see Christian radio in 5 years?
Right now I can see the
mountain top. The format will do well. However, CCM
programmers, myself included, must keep working to
make this format widely accepted. I know it can and
will happen. When you look at television these days
all you see is sex and violence and who can ridicule
and embarrass someone else the most. The pendulum
will swing and when it does, we will be there. We'll
be entertaining, relevant to the desired lifestyle
and we'll have really cool music too! The values
that this country is based on will become the norm
instead of the ostracized. With God's hand guiding
us, we will not be held at arms' length. How do we
get there? See above.