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Broadcasters Shine on Disasters

Floods and tornadoes bring out the best in broadcasters

The NAB touts broadcasters’ relationship with their local markets. Nothing is more local than the weather. The NAB’s June Licensed to Serve newsletter has some stories how these two points come together.

The central part of the country always has interesting spring weather. This year, Texas has been hard hit by rain and flooding. Radio stations across the state and in neighboring, and hard-hit, Oklahoma too, have been covering the rain and flooding, some 24/7. Cited were Austin’s CBS Radio KILT(AM/FM) and iHeartMedia’s KASE(FM) and KTBZ(FM); Dallas’ Cumulus Media KLIF(AM) and WBAP(AM); and Tyler Media’s KJKE(FM) in Oklahoma City.

In Austin, KASE also hosted a relief concert featuring Bobby Bones and his Raging Idiots. The beneficiary was the Central Texas Chapter of the Red Cross.

As if that wasn’t enough, there, it’s also tornado season. The Alpha Media cluster in East Texas’ Tyler worked with Gannett Broadcasting’s KYTX(TV) to raise money and gather food and clothing for the residents of nearby Van, Texas. It was hit by a tornado in May.

On a different front, CBS Radio’s Los Angeles station, KNX(AM), hosted a special series, “Graduating to Broke,” in May, looking at the high cost of a college education and the straits many graduates find themselves in.

Cox Media’s WDBO(FM) in Orlando produced a domestic violence special, “Awareness & Action: Domestic Violence.”

On the traditional fundraising front, WKLH(FM), a Saga Communications property in Milwaukee, collected $1.3 million for the Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin in a Memorial Day radiothon. Chief money wranglers were the morning show team of Carole Caine and Dave Luczak.

Saga’s Bellingham, Wash., station KAFE(FM), raised $32,000 for foster kids to go to camp. “Dave and Wendy in the Morning” were behind that effort.

And finally, Jayde Donovan of WPLJ(FM), a Cumulus Media station in New York city, delivered Apple iPads to pediatric cancer patients in her “Apple-a-Day” campaign during the month of May.