Career Capsule: Started in radio 18 years ago WCFL Chicagoland (WBGL) after leaving the retail side of Christian music (worked for a store in Chicagoland called True Tunes in the 90s). I ended up in main stream radio (classic rock and country 2003 -2008) then back to WBGL.
- Weez, Tell us what’s new with WBGL… news, changes, & with YOU… etc?
WBGL – we are always trying to find new ways to invest in our community. To better serve our community and find out what is the need? How can we be a part of the solution? How can we be His hands and feet?
For me I took over the prayer team a few years ago; that has been such an amazing way to connect with listeners that are going through a hard time. I happen to love to pray with people. So this was a natural step. With the prayer center I monitor it; reach out to those that share heavy requests – I have found sending them an email letting them know I saw their email and I am praying…they are reminded what we all need to be reminded of…you are not alone. And I have seen; sending that email makes a difference. Praying with the very artists we play is something I love to do. It’s serving each other. I love it when the Lord speaks and encourages us through each other. Something changed for me over the last 3-4 years (dealing with a chronic illness) the importance of prayer and having a strong prayer life. I have seen God do some amazing things; answer some prayers (as I am sure we all have!).
2. What is your typical day like regarding getting ready to go on the air?
Due to an illness that hit me about 4 years ago; I stepped down from being on the air in the last couple of years as it was the best decision. When I was on the air; I would pray before every shift. I would keep a notebook that I would write down funny – everyday life events that would happen and think “I need to share this!” I would look over that notebook before any shift.
3. What is the best programming advice you’ve been given? The worst?
The best advice – was this: be who you are. Don’t try to be who you “think” you should be. Be the real version of you.
The worst: probably were critiques of airchecks with no feedback on what I was doing “right”. There needs to be positive feedback with the negative as that is what helps to build people up.
4. Some say more Christian stations in a market the better, do you agree with that, why or why not?
Our market has a lot of other Christian stations. I happen to love that. It helps challenge you to be the station you are called to be. There is a sense of team work with other stations in the market. I love it when I can get together with my friends from other stations in our market and maybe talk about a similar issue that they may have experienced and were able to solve. There is wisdom to be shared. I love the sense of comradery. I love the shared Kingdom vision; that we are fighting this fight together. That fight being – seeing lives impacted through Christian music for Kingdom sake. That is a win!
5. What is the ONE thing you must have everyday to do your show?
6. Where will future Christian radio air talent come from?
I have heard my pastor say this over and over “God takes the ordinary to do the extraordinary” sometimes we overlook what can seem ordinary…but that is just what or who God is looking for to do extraordinary things.
7. Generally speaking to the industry what are the biggest obstacles facing Christian radio?
Maybe its more of a challenge than an obstacle per say…but we want to go deeper with our listener. How can we do that? I think it can start with us individually. Realizing we can’t take a listener to a place we have not been willing to go yet. That is deeper with our faith; deeper with the Lord. I know for me; the last 4 years I have gone deeper with the Lord through trials. Now I feel like I “get it”. Now I feel like I can share deeper because I have been deeper.
Another challenge or obstacle is how we have a good business model and yet run as a ministry? How do we incorporate a good business plan; promotions plan and still allow freedom for the sprit to move? Where can we truly see Ephesians 3:20 – to see God do more than we can ask or imagine?
8. Who are your radio heroes and influences? and why?
I would say the person who got me into radio in the late 90s. Julie (WCFL Chicagoland). At the time Julie and I were good friends (still are)…she came to me after the store I was managing closed. She and the then station manager at the time thought I would be a great edition to the team. I at that point had not thought about going into radio. I always loved listening to Julie – she was authentic; funny and real just as she was when we would hang out. I thought what a great example…sure! I will give this a shot!
Joe Buchanan – I have known Joe for many years. And now have the honor of learning from him and working as assistant music director with him. He has taught me how to keep your heart in music directing and how it is important to not lose that passion for music. Joe has changed the way I listen to music; to the radio.
This will be an unconventional choice…I would say Lisa Johnson. Our station had the pleasure of her consulting years ago. Lisa has become a dear trusted friend. I have been so influenced by her heart for prayer. Influenced by how she has prayed for me! My perspective has changed through our years of praying together. That prayer has been key influencing how I do my job; and how I pray for what I do; how I pray for my team.
And Meredith Andrews…Her worship has encouraged me and inspired me when I have needed it most. Her heart and love for the Lord is so zealous. I have learned from her the power of prayer and friendship. Her passion for the Lord is contagious. My friendship with her has influenced me in how I hear every song. How I treat and serve every artist.
There have been so many more. These are the first ones that come to mind.