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Clyburn, Morris Headline Radio Show

Also on the docket: AM revitalization, FM in phones, and dashboard trends

FCC Acting Chairwoman Mignon Clyburn is a featured speaker at next week’s Radio Show in Orlando.

Here’s a roundup of notable sessions and programs at the Radio Show in Orlando, Fla.

The NAB Education Foundation in partnership with the Broadcast Education Association starts the show on Tuesday Sept. 17 with its career networking event.

Record labels, artists and radio stations sometimes make uneasy bedfellows; on Wednesday in Orlando, Carson Daly of CBS Radio will moderate a panel called “Radio, Record Labels and Artists: Creating a Powerful Partnership,” aiming to discuss how the three collectively can grow their businesses. Panelists are Steve Bartels of Island Def Jam Music Group, which represents stars like Rihanna and Kanye West; veteran programmer John Dimick of Lincoln Financial Media; and performing artist Big Sean.

An Advertiser Luncheon on Wednesday will feature a keynote from “one of radio’s most important advertising clients,” who had not been named at press time.

How to improve the lot of AM broadcasters? Numerous articles in Radio World and elsewhere have explored this. A Wednesday tech session on “Revitalizing AM Radio” will be moderated by Ben Downs, vice president/general manager of Bryan Broadcasting Corp., and feature Mike Cooney, vice president/chief technology officer of Beasley Broadcast; Mark Denbo, an attorney with Drinker Biddle & Reath; and Glynn Walden, senior vice president of engineering at CBS Radio.

Burrowing further into that topic is the aptly named “Digging Deeper: Discussing AM Technical Improvements,” featuring a discussion with David Layer, NAB’s senior director of advanced engineering; Steve Lockwood, partner/senior engineer at Hatfield & Dawson; and Ron Rackley, a principal at du Treil, Lundin & Rackley.

Also on Wednesday, Paul Brenner, senior vice president and chief technology officer of Emmis Communications Corp., will tell attendees about the “State of the FM-Enabled Smartphone.” Among other topics he no doubt will discuss recent news that Sprint has begun installing the NextRadio application in several smartphone models.

Wednesday tech sessions also include “Essential Planning for the Unexpected” and “Recovering From the Unexpected”.

Acting FCC Chairwoman Mignon Clyburn will deliver the show keynote on Wednesday afternoon following remarks by NAB President/CEO Gordon Smith and RAB President/CEO Erica Farber. Clyburn has served on the commission since 2009 and became acting chairwoman in May, the first woman to fill that role.

Leadership will be a point of focus on Thursday, specifically at a Leadership Breakfast titled “Opportunities in a Changing Economy” that features several big, well, leaders. Participants include Lew Dickey, CEO of Cumulus Media; Mary Quass, CEO of NRG Media; Jeff Warshaw, CEO of Connoisseur Media; and Larry Wilson, CEO of Alpha Broadcasting and L&L Broadcasting. The panel will talk about expanding opportunities in radio for acquisitions and revenue in a growing economy; it will be moderated by Lew Paper, a partner with Pillsbury, and preceded by remarks from financial analyst Marci Ryvicker of Wells Fargo Securities.

Radio’s place in the “connected car” has been the subject of a series of Radio World articles (see, and the topic pops up in Orlando in a Thursday Super Session featuring presentations by Fred Jacobs, president of Jacobs Media/jacApps, and Roger Lanctot, associate director in the Global Automotive Practice of Strategy Analytics. Earlier this year, Lanctot told RW readers in a profile article that “the mobile advertising experience is in its earliest stages. What they’re trying to enable is a location-based experience, [but] radio has always been a location-based experience.” He urged broadcasters to take advantage of their ability to provide localized content.

Also on Thursday, Gordon Borrell of Borrell Associates will lead a Super Session, “Radical Change in Local Advertising and How Media Is Morphing to Survive.” He promises to explore new ways in which local businesses spend marketing dollars. Specifically, he riffs on recent big growth in money spent on promotions. Borrell sees this trend as an opportunity for radio, which knows how to use talent endorsements, live remotes and contests effectively.

The NAB Marconi Radio Awards dinner on Thursday will feature a performance by the recently reunited band The Mavericks, arranged through Big Machine Label Group in Nashville. Radio personality “Shotgun Tom” Kelly will host.

Up for the honor of Legendary Station of the Year are KFI(AM) in Los Angeles, KIIS-FM Los Angeles, KYW(AM) in Philadelphia, WBBM(AM) in Chicago and WEEI(FM) in Boston. Competing for Network/Syndicated Personality of the Year are Argelia Atilano, Delilah, Steve Harvey, Tom Joyner and Petros & Money. For the full list, visit, keyword finalists.

National Radio Systems Committee meetings also will be held Thursday. The AM & FM Analog Broadcasting Subcommittee, Radio Broadcast Data Standard Subcommittee and Digital Radio Broadcasting Subcommittee are all active and scheduled to meet.

Two technical presentations on Friday focus on “Efficiencies and Cost Savings.”

Gary Liebisch, eastern region sales manager for Nautel Ltd., will talk about ways to cut AM transmitter power bills.

Then Mary Ann Seidler, vice president of sales for Tieline Technology, will lead a panel on studio design using audio over IP. Speakers include Cumulus Media Senior Vice President of Engineering and IT Gary Kline; Greater Media-Boston Director of Technical Operations Paul Shulins; and Wyoming Public Media Director of Engineering Shane Toven.

If You Go

What: Radio Show, Produced by NAB and RAB

Where: Rosen Shingle Creek Hotel, Orlando

When: Sept. 18–20


How Much: Various packages; basic advance registration is $495 for NAB/RAB members, $795 for others

Two new conference tracks on Friday — the Programming Masters Series and Sales Consultants’ Corner — run concurrently and aim to give programmers and sales people, respectively, “a comprehensive training opportunity in a consolidated format.” Planners promise that attendees will learn strategies and best practices that can help them increase revenue and enhance content.

Broadcasters have developed something of a crush on FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai these days, thanks to his vocal advocacy for the AM band. Pai will speak at the Radio Show Luncheon Friday, to “share his views on communications policy and how it affects free, local radio broadcasting,” as well as discuss his involvement in AM issues.

The luncheon also will feature the presentation of the National Radio Award to Hubbard Radio Chair Ginny Hubbard Morris.

She manages the strategic direction of Hubbard’s stations, which serve big markets: Chicago, Washington, Minneapolis/St. Paul, St. Louis and Cincinnati. Over the past two years the company also has made notable acquisitions from Bonneville International and Sandusky Radio (the latter notably ending Sandusky’s 36-year history in radio), thus bringing Hubbard’s station count to 30 once pending deals are complete.

Morris joined the Hubbard family broadcasting business in 1982 and worked her way up; she also is a former chair of the NAB Radio Board. She joins a list of National Radio Award recipients that includes Dan Mason, Charles Warfield, Ed Christian, Jerry Lee, Lowry Mays, Jeff Smulyan and Erica Farber.

A few other session titles that caught our eye throughout the agenda are “The Mysteries of Compensation,” “Are You Ready to Drive Revenue From Health Care,” “Programming and Digital: Different Metrics, Same Goal,” “Imaging for a PPM World,” “Managing Controversy” and “Adventures in Copyrightland.” The full program can be found at