In 8th grade, I took the train to Chicago for my
first radio job fair. In high school, I unsuccessfully tried to
start my own radio station. During college, I skipped classes to
hang around WONU (“Chicago’s Christian Variety”) and eventually
became Morning Show Producer and Promotions Director. I also
interned at WCKG (Talk That Rocks), worked in promotions at WJMK
(Chicago’s Oldies Station), and filled in a few times producing
at WLS (The Big 89).
After college, I was hired by K-LOVE and Air1 as the
Chicago-based Regional Manager. Left for some sun and spent a
year in West Palm Beach, FL, as Marketing Director for WAY-FM.
In 2007, I returned to K-LOVE and Air1 as the Director of
National Promotions, became Air1 APD in 2009, and was named
Program Director in 2011.
1. Recently you've
taken over the programming at Air1... tell us how that came
was the Promotions Director, Eric Allen was PD. He was a
fantastic mentor and he included me in programming decisions
beyond promotions. When Eric left, I stepped up to become Air1
APD. After a year as APD, I guess I held it together well enough
that I was promoted to PD about the time Mark Ramsey wrote this
“The End of the Program Director”.
you been able to implement any changes since becoming Air1 PD?
We’re now live
24 hours a day (M-F) and utilize Tommy Kramer to coach each one
of our on-air personalities.
3. Do you
face any specific programming challenges with so many signals?
great radio is the same whether you program 1 station or a
network of 200. Our challenge is to stay listener-focused,
ensure our personalities are engaging and relatable, and that we
only play great songs.
criteria do you require for a song to be played on Air1?
The song has to
make me feel something. Once we start playing a song, we survey
our fans to make sure we are playing it as often as they want to
hear it. The artist or band also needs to have a lifestyle
consistent with our values.
kind of promotions work best for Air1?
promotions are the ones that are compelling for the entire
audience not just the 2% who ever participate. Great promotions
evoke emotion and entertain.
6. How do
you think Christian Record labels can better serve Christian
I don’t know.
My job is challenging enough, I don’t presume to tell the labels
how to do theirs.
your opinion what are the biggest obstacles facing Christian
If we are
merely a music-delivery service, Pandora is going to replace all
of us very soon. If we are a relevant companion that inspires,
engages, and entertains ours fans, we’ll do just fine.
What do you believe is the primary role of the Christian radio
relatable, compelling, relevant, and so engaging that even if I
don’t like the music on the station, I listen to hear what you
are going to say.
(if any) Christian radio stations do you consider as innovators
I am a huge fan
of the way KTIS engages fans, serves the community, and connects
listeners to one another with “Prayer Works”, “I Can Help” and
“The Drive Thru Difference”.
do you see Christian radio in 5 years?
will have more fans and supporters than ever before.