Industry News

Melissa Montana: 35 Years of Excellence!

Today May 1st marks Melissa Montana’s 35 year anniversary at WLAB/Ft Wayne (Star 88.3)….  Montana serves as CEO/President/GM of STAR Educational Media Network, a not-for-profit 501c3 entity that was formed in the Spring of 2009 and operates WLAB.

Melissa told HisAir today, “I would have never dreamed when I came to this town 35 years ago that I would see the miracles I’ve seen. The growth, the challenges, the victories and the lives impacted by the assignment God gave me here. It’s still fresh and still new. I’m the one that feels honored to get to do this with my amazing STAR team. I love this industry and I’m not even close to being done. My answer to Jesus is always “Yes, I’m in”! Love you all!”

In 2009 Melissa led the effort to purchase WLAB from the Indiana District-Lutheran Church Missouri Synod who had owned the station for 23 years. They knew the potential for the station’s growth, but also recognized the opportunity to increase support for its missions programs and decided to sell the station. Montana seized the opportunity, formed the new company and began the work on buying the station. In June of 2009, an offer was accepted to purchase the station. After FCC approval and other legal matters, the transfer of ownership took place on Friday, October 30, 2009. Under Montana’s leadership WLAB has grown to 10 frequencies in the region.

Josh Raines who serves as VP of Marketing/Outreach has been at WLAB 4 years says, “Melissa is a trailblazer and has been leading STAR with a no quit attitude and passion to lead people to Jesus. She has one of the biggest heart and one of the most intentional leaders that I have the privilege of serving. She is a pillar in the radio industry and our community.”

WLAB PD Don Buettner had this to say, “There are so many great things about Melissa I admire as a leader although to me she’s just as much a sister. For nearly 30 of these years, we’ve have been through many highs and lows together both professionally and personally. She has always been there for me and for others on the team past and present. Passion, sacrifice, motivator, encourager and mentor are all words that come to mind for me and you would hear that from many others as well.”

Get to know more about Melissa in a HisAir exclusive interview from 2023 – HERE

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