Feature InterviewInterviews

Troy Kriechbaum Interview 4-8-19

Troy Kriechbaum
General Manager
Tyler, TX

Career Capsule: Troy’s passion for pointing people to Jesus through Christian music shaped his formative years and he got his start spinning vinyl from the likes of DeGarmo & Key, Petra and Rez Band on the Baylor University radio station. Three decades later, he serves as President/CEO of 89.5 KVNE and 91.3 KGLY in Tyler, Texas.  God has blessed KVNE with Station of the Year awards from NRB and CMB, as well as the Rob Gregory Community Service Award.

Troy’s experience includes 17 years at KCBI in Dallas where he served as Marketing & Promotions Director.  He has served on the CMB Board of Directors, the NRB Radio Advisory Committee and the Southwest NRB Board. Troy married Teresa, his college sweetheart, 28 years ago and they have four children Rebekah (24), Caleb (22), Joshua (19) and Levi (14).


Troy, tell us what’s new at KVNE… news, changes, & with YOU… etc?

We just hired Bill Bumpas as our Program Director.  Bill brings 3 decades of experience to the table and is a multi-tool player.  Jennifer Bailey joins our team this week as Director of Marketing & Community Connections.  Jennifer is proficient at marketing strategies, very creative and well-connected in our community.  Looking forward to seeing how God uses these two to point more people to Jesus.


Christian Radio has become very competitive… what do you do to stand out from the crowd?

We really strive to know our audience and what they want from us.  Our on-air hosts are real and genuine and share thoughts from God’s Word every hour.  We are at a ton of events and connect our listeners to local ministry opportunities.


What is the best managerial advice you’ve been given? The worst?

The best advice – Don’t ask someone to do something you wouldn’t be willing to do yourself.  Having started as an intern, I have done just about everything. Lead by example with servant leadership. 

The worst advice was actually something I witnessed. – My first manager in Christian radio, would send memos to the entire staff to fix problems that were being caused by one person.  Frustrated the entire team, and the offender never got the point anyway.


Some say more Christian stations in a market the better, do you agree with that, why or why not?

While it is certainly more challenging with competition (and can potentially water down effectiveness), I think the apostle Paul’s words ring true on this subject.

Phillipians 1:15-18

15 It is true that some preach Christ out of envy and rivalry, but others out of goodwill. 16 The latter do so out of love, knowing that I am put here for the defense of the gospel. 17 The former preach Christ out of selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing that they can stir up trouble for me while I am in chains. 18 But what does it matter? The important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached. And because of this I rejoice.


What is the ONE thing you must have everyday to do your job?

Time in God’s Word before I start the day.  If I don’t drink from the well of Living Water, then I’m not going to be serving God and my team out of the Lord’s strength.  I wish I had been more consistent in this area in my younger days.


In what area do you believe Christian Radio needs to improve most?

Effectively marketing their stations to the community.  WPOZ, KSBJ and Joy FM in St. Louis do a tremendous job of that – others should follow their lead and invest in marketing.


Generally speaking to the industry what are the biggest obstacles facing Christian radio?

Clutter on our airwaves.  Commercial stations are packed with commercials.  Non-comms have a tremendous advantage by not having to air commercials, yet they throw their advantage out the window by loading up on non-commercial commercials.


Who are your radio heroes and influences? and why?

Ron Harris, my former leader at KCBI, is a tremendous example of faithful service in Christian media over five decades.  At age 70, I would say he is finishing strong, but he is not slowing down or nearing the finish – still impacting hearts for eternity!

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