Ron Kuby Exits WABC, New York. So far, there’s no explanation from Cumulus Media about the sudden departure of Ron Kuby from the Curtis & Kuby midday show on news/talk WABC, New York. The WABC website indicates Curtis Sliwa is staying on to host the 12:00 noon to 3:00 pm show solo and it appears likely that Kuby’s departure is the result of budget cuts. Sliwa and Kuby returned to WABC after a six-year absence back in 2014. The liberal Kuby and conservative Sliwa had worked together successfully at WABC from 2000 until 2008 when their show was canceled. Sliwa hosted a solo show at Salem’s crosstown WNYM “AM 970 The Answer” for a number of years between 2008 and 2014.
Clark Howard Suffers Near-Fatal Medical Episode. Nationally syndicated consumer issues talk host Clark Howard tells WSB-TV, Atlanta that his doctors have a working theory that the antibiotic ciprofloxacin combined with his cholesterol medication may have been responsible for the life-threatening illness he recently suffered. Howard was prescribed the antibiotic as a precautionary measure to ward off infection after a routine biopsy to monitor his prostate cancer. However, days later he was admitted to the hospital and ultimately diagnosed with rhabdomyolysis – and affliction that he says results in your muscles basically eating themselves. Doctors flushed his system with IVs and he’s recuperated.
Three Fox News Staffers File Discrimination Suits. Responding to the suits filed in District Court in New York, Fox News says, “We believe these latest claims are without legal basis and look forward to proving that Fox News at all times has acted appropriately, and lawfully, in connection with these matters.” The suits were filed by the New York employment law firm Wigdor LLP on behalf of claimants Kathleen Lee, currently a shift editor at Fox News Radio, former accounts payable coordinator Naima Farrow, and former accounts receivables specialist Vidya Mann. Lee claims that she suffered retaliation after reporting sexual harassment. Farrow alleges she was fired after notifying her supervisor that she was pregnant. And Mann – who was not a full-time staffer – says she was let go after having her baby. You can see the Bloomberg account here.
Joe Madison Re-Ups with SiriusXM. Talk radio pro Joe Madison is staying on with SiriusXM after signing a new, multi-year contract to continue hosting the 6:00 am to 10:00 am ET program on the satcaster’s Urban View channel. SiriusXM president and chief content officer Scott Greenstein comments, “Joe is the foundation of our Urban View channel, a tireless campaigner for social change and one of the best interviewers working in radio today. We are thrilled to have him exclusively on SiriusXM and look forward to many more years of great radio with Joe.”
Alpha Media Closes on Purchase of WFTL and WMEN in West Palm Beach. The company had been operating news/talk WFTL and sports talk WMEN in the West Palm Beach market under an LMA from ACM JCE IV B LLC for almost two years. Earlier this year, Alpha Media agreed to purchase the stations for $2 million. The stations were acquired by ACM JCE IV B LLC from the bankruptcy restructuring of James Crystal Enterprises in 2013. Alpha Media chairman Larry Wilson states, “We are delighted to add WFTL and WMEN to our dynamic group of stations in South Florida. Elizabeth Hamma and her outstanding team are the best in the business and this acquisition represents our confidence in their ability to continue to dominate the Palm Beach market.” Alpha also operates hot AC WRMF, AC WEAT “Sunny 107.9,” country WIRK, urban contemporary WMBX “X102.3,” and hip hop W242CI “Beatz 96.3.”
TALKERS News Notes. It’s a milestone for Compass Media Networks’ “Mike Lupica Podcast” as it passes the one million download mark. The longtime New York sports writer and media figure was recently nominated for a 2017 Webby Award for Best Sports Podcast. Lupica comments, “Doing this podcast has been even more fun than I thought it would be. We’re a year in and already we’ve had really insightful conversations with some of the biggest names in sports, media and politics.”…..Edison Research announces it appoints Dr. Nino Japaridze to the new role of vice president for public affairs research. Japaridze will be based in Washington to lead Edison’s public affairs and international research practice. She more than 20 years of experience in the fields of public affairs and international research, most recently as vice president of public affairs at Ipsos North America where she led global media research and political risk practice areas and was responsible for partnering with technology-based companies to extend research capabilities across digital platforms…..WSGW, Saginaw, Michigan news director Ann Williams is named president of Michigan Associated Press Media Editors. Williams was installed at the APME banquet in Lansing last month. At the same event, the Alpha Media station was honored with three first place awards by the organization for Best Sportscast, Best Digital Presence, and Best Use of Photography. WSGW program director Dave Maurer comments, “We are so proud of Ann. She has done an outstanding job with her great attention to detail and her mentoring skills in our news department and now she will share her talents on a statewide basis in this top leadership position.”…..Capitol Broadcasting’s WCMC-FM, Raleigh “99.9 The Fan” is hosting its 3rd Annual Sports Radio Open golf tournament on June 20 to benefit the Helene Foundation, which provides immediate support for mothers fighting cancer to positively impact their families.
New York Festivals Announces Finalists for International Radio Program Awards. The finalists have been announced for The New York Festivals International Radio Program Awards for 2017. The Grand Jury selected 336 finalists from entries submitted from 32 countries across the globe. Entries were judged on production values, organization, presentation of information, creativity and use of the medium. All entries achieving finalist status proceed to the medal round. Entries from the U.S. moving on to the medal round come from companies including: ABC Radio Network, CBS RADIO Boston, ESPN, iHeartMedia, SiriusXM, Westwood One, and more. The World’s Best Radio Programs will be announced at the 2017 awards ceremony on Monday June 19 Manhattan Penthouse in New York City. See all the finalists here.
Trump in the Middle East, Trump Budget Proposal, British Concert Bombing, Trump-Russia Investigation, Ford CEO Fired, NC Redistricting Ruling, Confederate Monuments Removal, and MLB, NBA and NHL Action Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (5/22). President Donald Trump’s visits to Saudi Arabia, Israel and the Palestinian territory; President Trump’s budget proposal and GOP leaders’ reactions; the deadly terror attack at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England; the investigation into possible links between Trump campaign operatives and Russia; Ford fires CEO Mark Fields and installs Jim Hackett; SCOTUS throws out North Carolina redistricting ruling it was based on racial gerrymandering; the tensions in the South over the removal of Confederate monuments; and MLB, NBA and NHL action were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.
Beasley Media Group Announces New Format Captains. Four Beasley Media Group programmers are adding format captain to their business cards. The company is promoting WMMR-FM and WMGK-FM, Philadelphia program director Bill Weston to format captain for rock; Boston OM and WMJX-FM and WBQT-FM PD Cadillac Jack to format captain for CHR and AC; Las Vegas OM and KOAS-FM and KVGS-FM PD John Candelaria to format captain for urban; and WSOC-FM and WBCN-FM, Charlotte OM and PD DJ Stout to format captain for country. Beasley EVP of programming Justin Chase, “Not only will these programmers offer additional insight and assistance for our other PDs, they will also create more synergy and leverage in order to better compete in the markets we serve. We feel this team, with its unique strengths, will provide incredible support when situations arise.”
More Music Radio News and Career Moves. WLNK, Charlotte afternoon duo Matt Harris and Ramona Holloway sign a new, multi-year contract to remain with Entercom Charlotte’s hot AC station. Entercom Charlotte VP and market manager Matt Hanlon states, “Matt and Ramona’s commitment to our listeners and the community set them apart from any other afternoon entertainment in Charlotte. That is precisely why they continue to be the dominant ratings leader for WLNK-FM. Their commitment to community, brilliant entertainment and passion for our listeners make them an ideal program for the culture we foster at Entercom Communications.”…..iHeartMedia Nashville is bringing market legend Gerry House back to the station to serve as its official voice talent for classic country W252CM “The BIG Legend at 98.3,” effective May 26. House says, “The truth is, the good times, the spirit and the hits we played back when the House Foundation morning show was on the air will be on The BIG Legend at 98.3.” House was heard on WSIX-FM, Nashville from 1983 to 2010…..Radio pro Jay Philpott is making a move within Cumulus Media to move from rock WNNX, Atlanta “Rock 100.5” to his hometown of Minneapolis to join rock KQRS “Q92” to host the evening show. Philpott says he’ll exit WNNX on June 2 and start at KQRS on June 12. He will continue to host his national show on the Westwood One network.….Myra Ellison announces she’s leaving her director of promotions, marketing & web gig at Entercom’s Madison cluster due to health issues…..Westwood One is kicking off the summer season with two exclusive Memorial Day Weekend music specials. One is called “Get Out and Play” and is hosted by Ed Sheeran. It celebrates the beginning of summer with four hours of music, information on this summer’s hottest tours, plus talk about the beach, summer vacation spots and new box office releases. “Memorial Day Mania” is hosted by Pete Wentz of Fall Out Boy and “ignites the summer season with tour and summer music festival talk, new music coming out this summer, road trips, and more.”