Thursday, November 17, 2022 | TALKERS magazine - talk media trade : TALKERS magazine

Thursday, November 17, 2022

| November 17, 2022

Saga Communications Names Chris Forgy President and CEO; Wayne Leland Rises to SVP of Operations. The company announces that it is promoting Christopher Forgy to the leadership position president and CEO effective December 7, 2022. Forgy has been serving Saga Communications as SVP of operations since 2018. He assumes the role after the passing of longtime chief Ed Christian, who passed away on August 19. Forgy states, “I am honored, humbled, excited and ready to begin my new role as only the second president and CEO Saga has ever known. We have an elite group of leaders and staff. I have often said you don’t have to be on all the time, only when it’s time. The time is right now for all of us to step up and shine for our customers, our listeners, our employees and our shareholders. As we embark on this ongoing adventure that is Saga, I would like to thank Warren Lada and the Saga board of directors for this opportunity.” The company also announces the promotion of Wayne Leland from president and general manager of its radio stations in Norfolk, Virginia to SVP/operations, effective January 3, 2023. Leland comments, “To become the new senior vice president/operations for Saga is a dream come true. I look forward to working with Chris, our corporate staff, our market managers and all of Saga’s staff to continue Saga’s journey into the future.” Lada has been serving as interim president and CEO since Christian’s death. He adds, “Chris Forgy stood out from all the others considered for the president and CEO role. His leadership will provide an opportunity to bring new ideas and change to Saga. Saga’s core values, performance standards and culture will remain as the foundation to our success. Also, promoting Saga veteran Wayne Leland provides a smooth transition and an opportunity to explore and implement strategic operational changes to enhance Saga’s ongoing performance.”

McVay Media Brings Ryan Kershner Aboard. Consulting firm and content creating company McVay Media announces that “Nights with Elaina” executive producer Ryan Kershner joins to work with McVay Media clients in enhancing the consultancy’s services to audio platforms. His focus will be on producing podcasts, branded audio for the music industry, artists and product-oriented projects, branded content, audio specials and longform programming for radio and streaming platforms. McVay Media president Mike McVay says, “Ryan and I have worked together on multiple projects before he joined Westwood One and I worked with him during our mutual time there. McVay Media has grown our business to where we’re engaged with multiple premium companies that are seeing meteoric growth. They can benefit from having another pair of ears and a skilled set of hands on their audio projects.” Kershner comments, “I’ve loved my time working at Westwood One and working with Elaina Smith, first on “Nash Nights Live” and then “Nights with Elaina.” I’m proud of what we’ve built and will always applaud her success. I want to thank Brian Philips, Susan Stephens, Charlie Cook and truly everyone I worked with for the opportunity to grow and learn. After much consideration, the opportunity to be surrounded by family, work with my longtime mentor and to continue my career growth, was too hard to pass up.” Kershner leaves Westwood One after 10 years with the network. He departs at the end of the year.

Triton Digital Releases Podcast Ranker for October. The latest Top Podcasts report from Triton Digital for the U.S. in the month of October has been released. Based on Average Weekly Downloads and including participating networks, NPR’s “NPR News Now” remains in the #1 spot and audiochuck’s “Crime Junkie” keeps its #2 position. Moving into the #3 rank is NBCUniversal News Group’s “Dateline NBC,” followed by Wondery’s “Morbid” at #4. NPR’s “Up First” rises to #5; Cumulus Media Network’s “The Ben Shapiro Show” is at #6, followed by Cumulus’ “The Dan Bongino Show” at #7. You can check out the Top 100 Podcasts from Triton Digital’s October 2022 ranker here.

New York Festivals 2023 Radio Awards Adds New Categories. The New York Festivals Radio Awards for 2023 is open for entries through January 31, 2023. The winners will be announced at the 2023 Storytellers Gala that will take place at the annual NAB Show in Las Vegas on April 18, 2023. In 2022, the New York Festivals Radio Awards added 12 Social Justice categories to the competition. For 2023, two new categories are added: Best Nonfiction Documentary Series and Best Investigative Journalism Documentary. You can find more information and enter the competition here.

TALKERS News Notes. A new book from David Stockman, who served as director of the Office of Management and Budget in the Reagan administration, is being published by Newsmax‘s Humanix Books. It’s titled, The Great Money Bubble: Protect Yourself From the Coming Inflation Storm, and in it Stockman writes, “Inflation showers windfalls on the rich, while it penalizes workers, savers, retirees, small businesses, and most of Main Street economic life.” He offers strategies to not only protect one’s hard-earned savings and investments, but how to grow them during this time of inflation and economic crisis. Stockman is available as a guest on talk radio. Reach out to A.J. Rice at: aj@publiuspr.com…..The American Advertising Federation, the “unifying voice for advertising,” announces the launch of a new podcast series, “Future Legends of Advertising,” co-produced by iHeartMedia and Known. The AAF says the podcast is being launched on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the AAF Advertising Hall of Achievement and will pair advertising luminaries with this year’s AHOA inductees in an eight-part series that will explore issues of interest to the industry. Among the topics to be explored: branded content, data science, DEI and social impact, the war for talent, public service, the future of the CMO and more. iHeartMedia chief marketing officer Gayle Troberman says, “Who better to talk about the issues affecting our industry today and tomorrow than those advertising luminaries who have been there, and those who are plotting the course of our future. Marketing geniuses like these deserve the biggest stage in podcasting. That’s why we’re excited to help them drop their advertising wisdom on the #1 iHeartPodcast Network.”…..Audacy’s Pineapple Street Studios formally recognized the Writers Guild of America, East as the collective bargaining representatives of the staff’s writers, producers, editors, engineers, and other storytellers. A card-check conducted by an independent third-party confirmed that a majority of the 42-member bargaining unit signed union cards in favor of the union. The Pineapple Street Union says, “We are so proud to have won voluntary recognition from management at Pineapple and Audacy. This victory is a direct result of months of hard work and dedication to building solidarity across our organization. We’re excited to carry this momentum forward into a collaborative bargaining phase, focused on pay and protections, accountability, consistency and unity at the company. We’re very pleased that Pineapple and Audacy have moved quickly and respectfully in this voluntary recognition process. We hope that this not only sets the tone for our upcoming bargaining process, but also sets an example for leaders across our industry – that working with employees to achieve more equitable workplaces can and should be a collaborative and straightforward experience on both sides of the table. We stand in solidarity with other producers, editors, writers, engineers, and staff across the industry in the continued effort to make audio a more fair and equitable field.”

Midterm Aftermath, Trump in ’24/Legal Issues, Pence Town Hall, The Economy/FTX Meltdown, Russia-Ukraine War, U.S. China Relations, N. Korea Sabre Rattling, UVA & U. Idaho Slayings Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (11/16). The Republicans take control of the U.S. House in January while the Democrats hold on to the Senate; former President Donald Trump’s announced bid for the White House in ’24 combined with the testimony of Cassidy Hutchinson before a Georgia grand jury looking into Trump’s actions after the ’20 election; former Vice President Mike Pence speaks on CNN Town Hall; inflation and fears of a recession combined with the crash of crypto exchange FTX; Russia’s intensified shelling of Ukraine and the question of the origin of the missile that hit Poland; the relations between the U.S. and China after Biden’s meeting with Xi Jinping; North Korea’s missile launches and threats against the U.S.;  and the slayings of students at the University of Virginia and the University of Idaho were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

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