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Friday, January 28, 2022

| January 28, 2022

NOW POSTED: This Weekend’s Installment of “The Michael Harrison Wrap: An Overview of the National Conversation.” The latest installment of the one-hour weekend special, “The Michael Harrison Wrap,” that looks back each week at the hottest topics discussed in American talk media per the research of TALKERS magazine, is now posted. This new episode titled, “Back in the USSR,” looks back at this past week of 1/24 to 1/28. The program features guests (in order of appearance): Kevin Casey, TALKERS executive editor, John Batchelor, talk show host, CBS RadioHarry Hurley, talk show host, WPG, Atlantic City; Victoria Jones, executive director/commentator, DC Radio CompanyJosh Hammer, opinion editor/podcaster, Newsweek; and Nanette Holt, reporter, The Epoch Times. The show airs weekends on WONK-FM, Washington, DC; WTIC, Hartford; KSCO, Santa Cruz, CA; KDFD, Denver; KFNX, Phoenix; KTLK-FM, St. Louis; WPG, Atlantic City, NJ; SuperTalk 99.7 WTN, Nashville; KMZQ, Las Vegas; WVLY, Wheeling, WV; WTRW-FM, Scranton/Wilkes Barre, PA; WVOX, Westchester, NY; KBDT, Dallas; KQSP, Minneapolis; KBKW, Aberdeen, WA; WGDJ, Albany, NY; WJFN-FM, Richmond, VA; WZFG, Fargo; KTGO, Tioga, ND; KWAM, Memphis; K-NEWS, San Luis Obispo; WGMD, Rehoboth Beach, DE; WCHM, Clarkesville, GA; WPHM, Port Huron, MI; KSYL, Alexandria, LA; KTOE, Mankato, MN; WCED, DuBois, PA; K-NEWS 101.3, Owensboro, KY; WWTK, Sebring, FL; WSAR-AM/FM, Fall River, MA; WIZM-AM/FM, La Crosse, WI; WMVA, Martinsville, VA; KQEN, Roseburg, OR; the Virginia Talk Radio NetworkCRN Digital Talk Radio NetworkPodcast Radio, UK and many more. To listen to this week’s episode, please click here.  To view the latest TALKERS magazine topic research, please click here. “The Michael Harrison Wrap” is now available in syndication via Talk Media Network to stations across America on a market exclusive basis. For affiliation information, please click here or call 616-884-8616.

Bonneville Names Sean Thompson PD for ‘Arizona Sports.’ Sports radio pro Sean Thompson is named program director for Bonneville’s Phoenix sports talk properties, KMVP-FM “98.7 FM Arizona Sports” and KTAR-AM “ESPN 620 Phoenix.” Thompson comes to Bonneville from his most recent position as assistant brand manager for Audacy’s WZGC-FM, Atlanta “92.9 FM The Game.” Thompson comments, “It was going to need to be the ultimate opportunity for me to leave ‘The Game’ and I’ve found it. With the talented talk shows, flagship relationships with all the local teams and full commitment to digital content, the potential for the ‘Arizona Sports’ super brand is limitless.” Bonneville Phoenix SVP and market manager Ryan Hatch adds, “Sean is the perfect person to lead ‘Arizona’s Sports Station’ to new heights. He is strategic, creative, collaborative and we can’t wait to see what he will do to continue to grow the ‘Arizona Sports’ brand on all channels.” Thompson takes over for Rod Lakin, who assumed the brand manager post with Audacy’s sports talk WIP, Philadelphia in October.

KFI-AM Launches Weekly Show with LA County Sheriff Alex Villanueva. Los Angeles news/talk KFI-AM announces the return of the weekly radio program, “Live and Unscripted with LA County Sheriff Alex Villanueva.” The iHeartMedia station will air the program on Sundays from 8:00 pm to 10:00 pm from its studios in Burbank. The station says, “The new weekly program is back by popular demand and is hosted by Alex Villanueva, who runs the country’s largest sheriff’s department. Every Sunday, listeners can join the show to hear the hottest topics on the mind of LA County residents: homelessness, crime, corruption and politics. Villanueva will also feature guests who will explain the inner workings of the various bureaus in his department.” Station program director Robin Bertolucci says, “Sheriff Alex Villanueva is a straight talker and KFI has always welcomed bold talk.”

Round Three of Holiday PPMs Released. The third of four rounds of ratings data from Nielsen Audio’s Holiday 2021 PPM survey has been released for 12 markets including: Portland, Charlotte, San Antonio, Sacramento, Pittsburgh, Salt Lake City, Las Vegas, Orlando, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Kansas City, and Columbus. Nielsen’s Holiday 2021 sweep covered December 9 – January 5. Today, TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian presents his Ratings Takeaways from this group of markets. Radio listening patterns change during this period due to the seasonal implementation of Christmas music but some spoken-word stations were able to buck that trend. Audacy’s news/talk KDKA-AM, Pittsburgh tacked on seven-tenths for a 4.4 share (weekly, 6+ AQH share) and rose to the #8 rank. iHeartMedia’s news/talk WTAM, Cleveland was up four-tenths for a 4.4 share and climbed to the #7 rank. In Kansas City, Audacy’s KMBZ-FM rose four-tenths for a 5.0 share finish good for the #5 rank in the market. You can see Mike Kinosian’s complete Ratings Takeaways from this group of markets (as well and the first two rounds) here.

Audacy Partners with Podchaser for Podcasting Insight. A new partnership between Audacy and Podchaser will allow Audacy to use Podchaser’s metadata and podcast technology capabilities to gain insight into the performance and influence of podcasts across the entire industry, enhancing Audacy’s value proposition for agencies and clients. Audacy EVP of digital sales Ken Lagana says, “As Audacy continues to build out our industry leading, measurement and attribution suite, we are excited to partner with Podchaser to help our client and agency partners continue to make smart decisions routed in data when placing their podcast buys with Audacy.”

WABC, New York Honors Memory of Fallen NYPD Officer Jason Rivera. New York City news/talk “77 WABC Radio” is honoring fallen New York City Police Officer Jason Rivera today (1/28), the day of his funeral. The station is asking its listeners to recognize Rivera’s service. “On behalf of John Catsimatidis, chairman and chief executive officer of The Red Apple Group and subsidiary Red Apple Media and the entire staff of 77 WABC, we encourage you to join us and support a hometown hero at the NYPD by ‘standing with us’ on Friday, January 28 at 9:00 am EST to honor the life of Jason Rivera. 77 WABC will pause the airwaves and take a moment of silence to show support and ask ALL of New York City and America to STAND, outside your home, inside your home, place of work or school. All of our communities are deeply saddened and affected, and we are asking to show your support.” 77 WABC and One Times Square have collaborated to display the image of Jason Rivera on the side of their building at 8:58 am, 9:15 am, 9:30 am, 9:45 am. The station is also distributing free “Back The Blue” pins to wear to show support for police officers via its website.

TALKERS News Notes. Seattle’s all-news KOMO-AM/FM “KOMO News” is losing its heritage call letters and the “KOMO News” slogan as part of the deal that transferred the station from Sinclair Broadcast Group to Lotus Broadcasting. The Seattle Times reports that since the deal allows Sinclair to keep the KOMO calls off the stations, it will take up the new calls KNWN for “Northwest News.” Station PD and afternoon personality Rick Van Cise tells the paper, “There won’t be any difference in the sound of the radio station. The personalities, the reporters are all staying the same.”…..Austin public radio outlet KUT-FM names Jerry Quijano permanent host of the “All Things Considered” host seat at the NPR member station. Quijano began his career with KUT in 2017 as a weekend local host. After graduating from Texas A&M University-San Antonio and participating in NPR’s Next-Generation Radio project, he started full-time the following year…..“Radiolab” founder Jad Abumrad announces he’s leaving the podcast he founded almost 20 years ago and to honor and celebrate him, WNYC is releasing the very first episode of the show that was broadcast only once on WNYC’s AM station in 2002 and then locked away in the vault. WNYC says it had to literally digitize the show from several CDs to get it on air. Speaking about his departure, Abumrad says, “For the last few years – since 2016 really – I’ve told myself that there’d come a point when the team would be ‘ready’ for me to leave. When they might even need me to. I wasn’t sure when that would be or how I’d know, but I made a pact with myself to stay watchful, to create space rather than filling it, and to listen rather than talk. We’re at that point.”

COVID-19 Vaccines, Masks & Mandates Top News/Talk Story for Week of January 24-28. Controversy surrounding COVID-19 vaccine and mask mandates and the rate of infection from the Omicron variant in the U.S. and around the world came together as the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio this week, landing atop the Talkers TenTM. At #2 this week was the global tensions over the Russian military build-up at the Ukraine border, tied with relations between the U.S. and China. Coming in at #3 this week was the announced retirement of Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer and speculation about President Joe Biden’s potential nominee. The Talkers TenTM is a weekly chart of the top stories and people discussed on news/talk radio during the week and is the result of ongoing research from TALKERS magazine. It is published every Friday at Talkers.com. See this week’s complete chart here.

March 2021 PPM Ratings Takeaways – Part Two

| April 21, 2021

March 2021 PPM Data – Information for the March 2021 sweep has been released for Washington, DC; Boston; Miami; Seattle; Detroit; Phoenix; Minneapolis; San Diego; Tampa; Denver; Baltimore; and St. Louis.

Nielsen Audio’s March 2021 survey period covered March 4 – 31.

In addition to providing “Takeaways” for spoken-word stations finishing in their respective markets’ top twenty, managing editor Mike Kinosian notes each particular city’s #1 station (6+), as well as highest (6+) positive spikes and sharpest declines.

All comparisons noted are February 2021 – March 2021 (6+).


News/Talk: Cumulus Media’s WMAL “105.9 FM – Where Washington Comes To Talk” 6.0 – 3.9, -2.1, fourth to ninth

News: Hubbard Broadcasting-owned WTOP & WTLP “Washington’s Top News” 9.9 – 9.0, -.9, flat at #2

Audacy business news WDCH “99.1 & 105.7-HD2 Bloomberg Radio” 1.2 – 1.1, -.1, unchanged at #19

Sports Talk: Audacy’s WJFK-FM “106.7 The Fan” 1.4 – 1.7, +.3, steady at #18

Public Radio News/Talk: American University-owned WAMU 10.2 – 9.7, -.5, repeating at #1

Pacifica Foundation’s public radio news/talk – jazz WPFW 1.2 – 1.1, -.1, steady at #19

Number One 6+: public radio news/talk WAMU, third straight month, 10.2 – 9.7, -.5

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Increase: country WMZQ (+.8)

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Decrease: news/talk WMAL (-2.1)


News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s WRKO “AM 680 The Voice Of Boston” 5.2 – 4.4, -.8, flat at #8

News – Talk: iHeartMedia-owned WBZ-AM “News Radio 1030” 7.5 – 6.4, -1.1, first to fourth

Sports Talk: Beasley Media Group’s WBZ-FM “98.5 The Sports Hub” 6.1 – 6.9, +.8, fourth to second

Audacy-owned WEEI-FM “93.7 Boston’s Sports Station” 3.3 – 3.0, -.3, #10 to #11

Public Radio News/Talk: Boston University‘s WBUR 4.4 – 4.6, +.2, ninth to seventh

WGBH Educational Foundation-owned WGBH 5.6 – 4.4, -1.2, sixth to eighth

Number One 6+: Beasley Media Group classic hits-oldies WROR, second month in a row, 7.5 – 7.7, +.2

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Increase: sports talk WBZ-FM (+.8)

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Decrease: public radio news/talk WGBH (-1.2)



Spanish News/Talk: Univision Radio-owned WAQI “710 AM Radio Mambi” unchanged at 2.6, remains at #13

Actualidad Media Group’s WURN-AM “Actualidad AM 1040” flat at 2.2, steady at #17

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: None in the top twenty

Public Radio News/Talk: Dade County School Board-owned WLRN 4.3 – 3.7, -.6, seventh to eighth

Number One 6+: Cox Media Group adult contemporary WFEZ, sixth successive month, unchanged at 9.1

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Increase: Two tied at +.6 (urban AC WHQT and urban contemporary WEDR)

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Decrease: public radio news/talk WLRN (-.6)



News/Talk: Bonneville’s KIRO-FM “97.3 FM” 7.3 – 6.4, -.9, repeating at #1

Co-owned KTTH “AM 770 Conservative Talk Radio” 2.8 – 2.6, -.2, #16 to #18

News: Sinclair Broadcast Group’s KOMO-AM & KOMO-FM “Seattle News, Weather, Sports” 5.2 – 5.0, -.2, remains at #5

Sports Talk: Bonneville-owned KIRO-AM “710 AM ESPN Seattle” 2.6 – 2.7, +.1, #18 to #17

Public Radio News/Talk: Northwest Public Radio’s KUOW 6.7 – 5.6, -1.1, second to third

Number One 6+: news/talk KIRO-FM, fifth consecutive month, 7.3 – 6.4, -.9

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Increase: country KNUC (+1.5)

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Decrease: public radio news/talk KUOW (-1.1)



News/Talk: Cumulus Media’s WJR “News Talk 760 AM” 4.8 – 4.3, -.5, eighth to tenth

News: Audacy-owned WWJ News Radio 950” 5.0 – 4.6, -.4, fifth to eighth

Sports Talk: Audacy’s WXYT-FM “97.1 The Ticket” flat at 4.9, seventh to sixth

Public Radio News/Talk: Wayne State University-owned WDET 2.5 – 2.2, -.3, remains at #16

Number One 6+: Audacy classic hits-oldies WOMC, first month, 6.2 – 7.2, +1.0

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Increase: classic hits-oldies WOMC (+1.0)

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Decrease: adult contemporary WNIC (-.8)



News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s KFYI “News Talk 550” 5.3 – 4.5, -.8, third to fifth

Bonneville-owned KTAR-FM “News 92.3 FM” 4.0 – 3.6, -.4, eighth to ninth

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Bonneville’s KMVP-FM “Arizona Sports 98.7 FM” flat at 2.4, steady at #20

Public Radio News/Talk: Maricopa County Community College-owned KJZZ 3.5 – 3.8, +.3, ninth to eighth

Number One 6+: iHeartMedia adult contemporary KESZ, fifth straight month, 7.1 – 6.4, -.7

Largest 6+ February 2021- March 2021 Increase: Two tied at +.7 (classic rock KSLX and country KMLE)

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Decrease: news/talk KFYI (-.8)



News/Talk: Audacy’s WCCO News Talk 830” 4.7 – 5.0, +.3, ninth to eighth

iHeartMedia-owned KTLK “Twin Cities News Talk AM 1130” flat at 4.0, #12 to #11

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: iHeartMedia-owned KFXN “FM 100.3 K-Fan” 7.4 – 6.7, -.7, remains at #3

Public Radio News/Talk: Minnesota Public Radio’s KNOW 8.5 – 7.1, -1.4, steady at #2

Number One 6+: Hubbard Broadcasting hot AC KSTP-FM, second straight month, 9.8 – 9.2, -.6

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Increase: Three tied at +.8 (classic hits-oldies KQQL; adult hits KZJK; and urban-rhythmic oldies KTCZ-HD3)

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Decrease: public radio news/talk KNOW (-1.4)



News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s KOGO “News Radio 600” 5.3 – 5.4, +.1, fifth to fourth

Los Angeles sibling KFI “AM 640” 2.2 – 1.9, -.3, remains at #17

Co-owned KGB-AM “760 AM” 1.9 – 1.8, -.1, #18 to #19

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Audacy’s KWFN “97.3 The Fan” 1.4 – 1.6, +.2, #21 to #20

Public Radio News/Talk: San Diego State University-owned KPBS 6.4 – 6.3, -.1, repeats at #1

Number One 6+ (Tie): public radio news/talk KPBS, second successive month, 6.2 – 6.4, +.2 and Audacy classic hits-oldies KXSN, first month, 6.2 – 6.3, +.1

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Increase: hot AC KMYI (+.9)

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Decrease: classic rock KGB-FM (-.8)



News/Talk: Cox Media Group’s WHPT “102.5 The Bone – Real, Raw, Radio” 5.1 – 4.2, -.9, fourth to ninth

iHeartMedia-owned WFLA “News Radio 970” 3.8 – 3.9, +.1, #11 to #10

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: iHeartMedia’s WDAE “Tampa Bay’s Sports Radio” 2.0 – 1.6, -.4, unchanged at #19

Public Radio News/Talk: University of South Florida-owned WUSF 3.4 – 3.3, -.1, steady at #14

Number One 6+: Cox Media Group adult contemporary WDUV, 105th month in a row, 7.0 – 8.5, +1.5

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Increase: adult contemporary WDUV (+1.5)

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Decrease: contemporary Christian WCIE (-1.6)



 News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s KDFD “Freedom 93.7” 3.1 – 2.6, -.5, #11 to #12

Co-owned KOA “News Radio 850” 2.0 – 2.2, +.2, steady at #15

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Bonneville’s KKFN “104.3 The Fan” 2.8 – 2.2, -.6, #13 to #15

Public Radio News/Talk: Colorado Public Radio-owned KCFR 7.1 – 6.1, -1.0, remains at #2

Number One 6+: Bonneville country KYGO, second straight month, 7.4 – 6.8, -.6

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Increase: Two tied with +1.0 (jazz KUVO and triple A KJAC)

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Decrease: public radio news/talk KCFR (-1.0)



News/Talk: Hearst Television’s WBAL News Radio 1090” 4.2 – 4.0, -.2, eighth to seventh

WCBM Maryland-owned WCBM “Talk Radio AM 680” 3.4 – 2.9, -.5, #12 to #13

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Audacy’s WJZ-FM “Baltimore Sports Radio 105.7 The Fan” unchanged at 3.0, #13 to #11

Public Radio News/Talk: Your Public Radio Corporation’s WYPR 4.3 – 2.9, -1.4, #7 to #13

American University-owned WAMU 1.2 – 1.3, +.1, #19 to #17

Number One 6+: Radio One urban AC WWIN-FM, third successive month, 9.4 – 10.0, +.6

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Increase: adult hits WQSR (+.7)

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Decrease: public radio news/talk WYPR (-1.4)



News/Talk: Audacy’s KMOX “The Voice Of St. Louis” 4.4 – 4.0, -.4, #9 to #11

Co-owned KFTK “Talk 97.1 FM” 3.3 – 3.2, -.1, #13 to #14

KFTK’s internet stream 1.4 – .7, -.7, #18 to #19

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Hubbard Broadcasting’s WXOS “101 ESPN” 4.0 – 3.6, -.4, #12 to #13

Public Radio News/Talk: University of Missouri-owned KWMU 3.2 – 3.0, -.2, flat at #15

Number One 6+: Hubbard Broadcasting rock KSHE, third month in a row, 12.4 – 12.8, +.4

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Increase: CHR KSLZ (+.6)

Largest 6+ February 2021 – March 2021 Decrease: Three tied with -.7 (news/talk KFTK’s internet stream; classic hits-oldies KLOU; and hot AC KYKY)


Up next: March  2021 overviews for Portland; Charlotte; San Antonio; Sacramento; Pittsburgh; Salt Lake City; Las Vegas; Orlando; Cincinnati; Cleveland; Kansas City; and Columbus. Email Mike Kinosian at Mike.Kinosian@gmail.com.

PPM Analysis: 2017 in Review

| February 13, 2018

By Mike Kinosian
Managing Editor

LOS ANGELES — As was once again documented in exhaustive detail in our exclusive series of “Holiday” 2017 overviews posted here last week, the “Holiday” sweep is without question the most volatile of Nielsen Audio’s 13 ratings periods per calendar year, particularly as it relates to music radio. 

Historically, the December and January survey periods produce the next wildest activity as they directly lead up to and follow the “Holiday” momentum; things tend to quickly shake back to a sense of “normalcy” in the January report.

Owing to major programming modifications (primarily all-Christmas music), listening patterns change significantly, of course, in November and December.

Given that a variety of formats are impacted, pronounced ratings swings in the aforementioned survey periods are hardly limited though to music-intensive formats.

In anticipation of next week’s January 2018 results, let’s examine the extent and 2017 timeline of high/low fluctuations registered by a comprehensive cross-section of spoken-word stations.

Each facility shown here (a) appeared in all 13 ratings periods (January 2017 through “Holiday” 2017), notching a minimum of .1 (6+) each time and (b) reached 1.0 or higher (6+) at least once in the last 13 sweeps.

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Friday, February 10, 2012

| February 10, 2012

SiriusXM Delivers 2011 Revenue Increase of 7%.  Sirius XM CEO Mel Karmazin opened the Thursday conference call with positive news about 2011 and rosy predictions for 2012.  Karmazin reports the satcaster added 1.7 million net new subscribers with revenue topping $3 billion for 2011.  He told analysts the company has reduced programming costs by 27% over the past three years to bring them to 10.7% of adjusted revenue.  And Mel’s favorite figure – free cash flow – was also a nice one: $416 million.  Karmazin says he expects free cash flow to grow to $700 million this year due in part to the restrictions on subscription prices having been lifted.  He projects revenue to hit $3.3 billion in 2012 with 1.3 million new subscribers added.

Nassau Broadcasting Agrees to Undergo Chapter 7 Liquidation.  It was four months ago that Nassau Broadcasting Partners convinced U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Kevin Gross to allow its Chapter 7 liquidation being sought by its creditors to be converted into a Chapter 11 reorganization.  Now, the company wants to liquidate itself and is asking the judge to approve an auction of its 49 stations.  Nassau owes more than $280 million to its senior lenders which include Goldman Sachs Lending Partners LLC, P.E. Capital LLC and Fortress Credit Opportunities.  Nassau’s spoken word stations include: WARK, Hagerstown, Maryland; WTSV, Claremont, New Hampshire; WEMJ, Laconia, New Hampshire; WVPO/WPLY, Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania; WEEX/WTKZ, Allentown, Pennsylvania; WSNO, Barre, Vermont; and WNHV, White River Junction, Vermont.

Dave Ramsey to Take Over Live Midday Slot on WOR, New York.  The end of the nationally syndicated Lou Dobbs talk radio show is creating room for other hosts and programs across the country and in New York City at Buckley Broadcasting’s WOR, independently syndicated Dave Ramsey moves from delayed broadcast status to airing in the live 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm slot beginning February 27.  WOR VP/GM Jerry Crowley states, “In these rocky economic times New Yorkers need a voice they can trust to guide them in their money decisions.  We are proud to welcome the country’s top name in financial talk radio – Dave Ramsey – to our award-winning lineup.”

“Battle Line with Alan Nathan” Adds Two Hours on Lifestyle TalkRadio Network.  Alan Nathan’s Main Street Radio Network-produced talk program is already distributed nationally via the Blue Star Media’s Lifestyle TalkRadio Network from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm daily.  Now, with the departure of Lou Dobbs’ radio program from the network, “Battle Line” adds another two hours from 8:00 pm to 10:00 pm.  Main Street Radio Network president Jane Silk says, “Main Street is very excited with the additional two hours of ‘Battle Line’ on LTRN.  Our working relationship with the staff of BTRN/LTRN is a model on how companies can work together for the good of all involved!”  Business TalkRadio Network CEO Michael Metter comments, “We are thrilled to be a part of the increase in Alan’s reach.  We are looking forward to bringing our affiliates the brilliance of Alan’s informed, entertaining centrist views.”

Fabulous Sports Babe Nanci Donnellan Off WHBO, Tampa Due to Health Issues.  The Tampa Bay Times is reporting that Nanci Donnellan – known as the Fabulous Sports Babe – is absent from her midday sports talk show on Genesis Communications’ WHBO, Tampa due to what is believed to be health issues.  The station is not commenting.  Donnellan, who hosted a nationally syndicated sports talk program on ESPN Radio in the 1990s and at Sports Fan Radio Network after that – left radio for a period to battle breast cancer before returning to the air in Florida, eventually settling at WHBO.  Sitting in for her is former WDAE sports reporter Whitney Johnson.

Boston Radio Community Honors Memory of WBZ Personality Dave Maynard.  During a 40-year radio and TV career Dave Maynard ruled the airwaves in Boston on WBZ during the 1980s.  He’s being remembered for his warm personality that made his program such a success in the market.  Maynard died at his home in Citrus Hills, Florida on Wednesday at age 82.  He’d suffered with Parkinson’s for the past decade.  WBZ director of news and programming Peter Casey tells the Boston Globe, “He was just a genuine, honest person on the radio.  There wasn’t a Dave Maynard on the air and a Dave Maynard off the air.  He made a career being Dave Maynard on the air, and that was the Dave Maynard who lived next door to you.”

Bell Media Cuts 16 Positions in Ottawa Radio/TV Cluster; Afternoon Talk Host Michael Harris Among Casualties.  While the Canadian economy has not been hit as hard as America’s during recent times, it appears Bell Media is feeling the pinch and the need to restructure its Ottawa operations.  According to the Ottawa Citizen, among those let go in addition to CFRA afternoon host Michael Harris on the spoken word side include CFRA reporter Gord McDougall, sports CFGO – Team 1200 – staffers Jim Jerome, Phil Melanson and Mike Sutherland.  Harris had been a talk host at CFRA for the past 11 years.  He tells the paper the moves appear to be financial in nature and management “went out of their way to say it had nothing to do with the quality of my work.”

GOP Primary Battle the Top News/Talk Story for the Week of February 6-10.  The intensifying GOP primary battle between Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum (with Ron Paul sticking it out as well) landed atop the Talkers TenTM as the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio this week.  Right behind at #2 was the 2012 presidential race combined with the Obama Super PAC story.  At #3 was the Syria policy and the closure of the U.S. embassy there as a result of the intense violence.  And at #4 was the foreclosure abuse settlement signed by President Obama.  The Talkers TenTM contains the 10 top stories and people discussed on news/talk radio during the week according to ongoing research from TALKERS.

In the Belly of the Beast.  WMAL-AM/FM, Washington, DC morning drive team the “Morning Majority” broadcast live from the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington, DC this week.  Pictured here are “Morning Majority” co-hosts Brian Wilson (l) and Mary Katherine Ham (c) interviewing CPAC organizer Al Cardenas (r) of the American Conservative Union.  Also broadcasting from the two-day event were WMAL morning co-host Bryan Nehman and midday talk host Chris Plante.


WNDB, Daytona Beach Talk Host Marc Bernier Moderates Carlson-Begala Debate.  The Daytona Regional Chamber of Commerce packed 600 people into the Daytona Beach Ocean Center for a debate of the issues of the election season between CNN analyst and Democrat Paul Begala and Fox News Channel personality and Republican Tucker Carlson.  WNDB talk show host Marc Bernier served as moderator for the event.  Pictured here are (from l-r) Paul Begala, Marc Bernier and Tucker Carlson.