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iHeartMedia Announces Post-Emergence Board of Directors


iHeartMedia has announced the members selected to serve on its Board of Directors upon its emergence from Chapter 11. Subject to confirmation of the Company's Plan of Reorganization, the post-emergence Board will consist of the following Directors, all of whom possess highly relevant knowledge and experience critical to positioning the company for future success:

Bob Pittman, Chairman of the Board of Directors:
Pittman is the current CEO and Board Chairman of iHeartMedia. He was formerly COO of AOL Time Warner, Inc. after serving as President and COO of America Online, Inc. Mr. Pittman also served as the CEO of MTV Networks and was the Cofounder and programmer who led the team that created MTV.

Jay Rasulo, Lead Independent Director:
Rasulo was formerly an executive at Walt Disney Company from 1986 through 2015, having spent his last five years at Disney as the CFO and Senior Executive Vice President. During his tenure at Walt Disney, among other roles, he served as the Chairman of Walt Disney Parks & Resorts. Rasulo is a graduate of Columbia University and received his MA & MBA from the University of Chicago.

Gary Barber:
Barber served as the Chairman and CEO of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc. (MGM) from 2010 through March 2018. Prior to his role at MGM, he was the co-founder of Spyglass Entertainment, which he founded in 1998. Mr. Barber received his undergraduate and post graduate degrees from the University of Witwatersrand in South Africa.

Rich Bressler:
Bressler is the current President, COO and CFO of iHeartMedia. Before joining iHeart, Mr. Bressler was a Managing Director at THL. Prior to joining THL, Mr. Bressler's experience included serving as Senior Executive Vice President and CFO of Viacom, Inc., as Chairman and CEO of Time Warner Digital Media, and as Executive Vice President and CFO of Time Warner Inc.

Brad Gerstner:
Mr. Gerstner is the Founder and CEO of Altimeter Capital, an internet, software, and travel focused investment firm founded in 2008. Prior to launching Altimeter, Mr. Gerstner was the co-founder of three internet search start-ups. Gerstner received his MBA from Harvard Business School.

Sean Mahoney:
Mahoney is a private investor. He currently serves as a director at two public companies, Aptiv plc and Arconic Inc., and at post-bankruptcy Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. His prior board service includes Delphi Automotive plc and Formula One Holdings. Mahoney was a partner at Goldman, Sachs & Co., where he headed the Financial Sponsors Group, and Vice Chairman, Global Banking, at Deutsche Bank Securities. Mahoney is a graduate of the University of Chicago and Oxford University (which he attended on a Rhodes Scholarship).

Kamakshi Sivaramakrishnan:
Sivaramakrishnan is the founder and CEO of Drawbridge, a company focused on designing quantitative algorithms for numerous areas, including computational advertising. Prior to founding Drawbridge, Sivaramakrishnan was a Senior Research Scientist at AdMob which was acquired by Google in 2010. Ms. Sivaramakrishnan has her Ph.D. from Stanford University.

"We are excited about both the depth and range of our new Board members," said Pittman. "We know our ability to draw on the experience of this unique combination of leaders in their respective fields will give us an unparalleled competitive advantage as we build our next level of growth."

iHeartMedia's current Board of Directors will remain in place until the company emerges from Chapter 11, at which time the new Board will assume its responsibilities.

Hubbard Radio Acquires Six in West Palm Beach from Alpha


Hubbard Radio
Hubbard Radio

Hubbard Radio has agreed to acquire six radio outlets from Alpha Media in West Palm Beach. Included in the deal are 100kW WRMF-FM (97.9), 90kW WIRK-FM (103.1), 7.5kW WMEN-AM (640), 50kW WFTL-AM (850), 100kW WEAT-FM (107.9) and 100kW WMBX-FM (102.3). The Seller, Alpha Media, is an Oregon-based company headed by Bob Proffitt. Alpha Media also owns 213 stations in 46 markets.

Alpha Media's Bob Proffitt commented, "While we are sad to see these great stations leave the Alpha family, we are equally happy for Elizabeth Hamma and her excellent and dedicated team to join Hubbard Radio."

Hubbard Radio, LLC, is a Minnesota-based company headed by Virginia Morris. Hubbard Radio also owns 48 stations in 8 states. "This is an exciting opportunity for Hubbard Radio," said Hubbard Radio CEO Ginny Morris. "West Palm Beach is a terrific market and the Alpha Media radio stations set the standard for excellence in south Florida. We feel honored to welcome these great radio stations into the Hubbard Radio family."

Kalil & Co. brokered this transaction which is subject to FCC approval.

Steel City Files Plan of Reorganzation to Exit Bankruptcy


Steel City Media
Steel City Media

Steel City Media, owner of station clusters in Kansas City and Pittsburgh, has filed a plan of reorganization in Federal Bankruptcy Court in St. Louis to exit chapter 11. The plan which is consensual among the company and its significant financial creditors, calls for Steel City to exit bankruptcy with a new balance sheet and with the Frischling family retaining equity control of the company.

Steel City VP Michael Frischling stated, "In an environment where equity in radio companies is being wiped out, we are gratified that we have reached a consensual agreement with our creditors that enables us to maintain equity and operational control that sets the stage for future growth and profitability. We look forward to emerging from Chapter 11early next year and we want to thank our employees and advertisers for their continued support."

Steel City is advised by Gordian Broadcast Technologies LLC, a partnership of radio broker Michael J. Bergner, of Bergner & Co. and an affiliate of Gordian Group LLC., a boutique investment bank specializing in complex and distressed financial advisory work. Steel City is represented by Robert Eggmann and Thomas Riske of the St. Louis, Missouri, based law firm Carmody MacDonald P.C.

Laura Ingraham Leaving Radio for Podcasting


Laura Ingraham
Laura Ingraham

After more than 17 years as a radio talk show host, Laura Ingraham has decided to transition from radio to a new original podcast. The Laura Ingraham Show, will debut in January on PodcastOne.

"While hosting a prime-time television show and raising three children on my own, continuing a three-hour morning radio show was no longer feasible," Ingraham said wistfully. "Although I will greatly miss my radio listeners and affiliates, working late nights and early mornings has taken a toll on my family life. Plus, my radio audience is smart, savvy and committed, and I know most will follow my new show in the format that is revolutionizing the audio world--digital podcasting."

PodcastOne Chairman & CEO, Norm Pattiz said, "Due to her HUGE success on the Fox News channel, daily podcasts are a much better fit for Laura's hectic schedule and provides her listeners in all markets access at any time to the new Laura Ingraham Show podcast. She's at the top of her game and her new original podcasts will fit perfectly on PodcastOne."

"Without phenomenal producers, a committed sales team, great station managers and program directors-and of course my loyal advertisers--this show wouldn't have been possible," said Ingraham. "Now it's time for a new adventure."

Kristina Hammerschmidt Named KYW Philadelphia News Director


Kristina Hammerschmidt
Kristina Hammerschmidt

Kristina Hammerschmidt is appointed News Director of Entercom's KYW-AM (KYW Newsradio) Philadelphia, effective November 19. A Philadelphia native, Hammerschmidt joined Entercom in 2017 as an editor and writer for KYW. She previously served as a producer and writer for KYW-TV in Philadelphia, WFMZ-TV in Allentown PA and WBOC-TV in Salisbury, MD. Hammerschmidt holds a B.A. in Journalism from Temple University.

"Kristina is a talented and dynamic leader with expertise that will take the KYW Newsradio team to the next level," said Entercom Philadelphia Senior VP/Market Manager David Yadgaroff. "Her strong track record producing live newscasts will help us deliver on our mission of telling compelling stories and setting the agenda for news coverage in the Delaware Valley."

"I am excited to lead such a talented and dedicated team of journalists," added Hammerschmidt. "KYW Newsradio has a rich history and plays an important role in the lives of nearly a million listeners in the Delaware Valley each week. I look forward to helping KYW continue to serve our community with the news, weather, sports and traffic information they depend on."

Former WEEI Host Minihane to Launch Radio Show, Podcast


Kirk Minihane
Kirk Minihane

Veteram radio personality Kirk Minihane will launch a new radio show, podcast and column on Radio.com, Entercom's digital platform. For the past five years, Minihane has been co-host of the "Kirk and Callahan" morning show on Sports WEEI/Boston. The move expands Kirk's reach to a national audience, while exploring wide-ranging topics in addition to sports. The podcast and column are expected to launch in January, 2019 and his new daily show, which will include a co-host to be named at a later date, is expected to launch in early 2019.

"As an industry leader in compelling, proprietary content, Entercom is making sure Radio.com is populated with the very best programming available. Kirk Minihane fits this model perfectly," said Entercom President of Programming Pat Paxton. "His ability to entertain and engage is second to none, and there is no question Kirk will become a highly successful national audio personality. He already conquered Boston. Now on to the rest of the world."

"I'm extremely excited to return to the air and reach a national audience, with greater autonomy to focus on a variety of topics, and even more digital platforms to connect with my fans," said Kirk Minihane. "It's been awesome to be part of WEEI and I know Gerry and Mut will continue to put on a great show. I want to thank the listeners for their patience and loyalty over the past several weeks, and I can't wait to get started on Radio.com."

Meanwhile, the WEEI morning show is being re-envisioned as a more sports-centric show consistent with the station's brand.

Cumulus Media Q3 Net Revenues Down 1.7%, Earnings Up


Cumulus Media
Cumulus Media

Following its exit from Chapter 11 reorganization, Cumulus Media reported net revenues for the third quarter of $282.3 million, down 1.7% from $287.2 million in 2017. Adjusted EBITDA grew 0.5% to $62.1 million from $61.7 million. The company posted a net income of $12.7 million (63 cents per diluted share) as compared to $1.2 million (4 cents) in the year-ago period. Cumulus' operating results and operating performance measures on a consolidated basis, as well as within the Cumulus Radio Station Group and Westwood One, were not materially impacted by the Chapter 11 reorganization.

Cumulus Media President/CEO Mary Berner commented, "In our first full quarter of operations since emerging from Chapter 11, our positive momentum continued and we remain focused on the path ahead. We delivered another quarter of Adjusted EBITDA growth - approximately 50 basis points on a reported basis and 3.9% when adjusting for the impact of USTN and our exit from WLUP-FM in Chicago. Additionally, in early October, we completed a $50 million prepayment of our term loan using cash generated from operations, demonstrating both our ability to produce significant free cash flow and our commitment to pay down debt with that cash."

She continued, "We continue to believe that our key growth initiatives, including our digital businesses at the Cumulus Radio Station Group, our rapidly expanding podcast business and pricing and inventory management improvements across the Company, as well as our substantial free cash flow generation, position the Company well to create value for all our stakeholders."

WWO's Ben Shapiro First to Receive ''One to Watch'' Award


National Radio Hall of Fame
National Radio Hall of Fame

Legendary air personality Art Laboe, an active radio performer with the longest continuous period of service on air for 75 years and a 2012 National Radio Hall of Fame Inductee, is the inspiration behind the NRHOF's creation of a special recognition award. The "One to Watch" recognition award will annually go to a promising radio personality who has demonstrated ratings success, audience growth and impact to one or more radio stations and the communities in which he or she works in. This year, the NRHOF Nominating committee chose Westwood One's Ben Shapiro.

Shapiro is a voice for conservative millennials who covers America's most powerful political personalities. A daily podcaster with 15 million downloads each month, Shapiro now distributes his podcast as a radio program on more than 60 stations. In January, 2019, he'll launch a live two-hour radio program nationwide.

NRHOF Chairman Kraig T. Kitchin states, "We wanted to commemorate the longevity and success of Art Laboe's career and thought creating an opportunity to recognize our rising stars in his honor was the perfect way to do it. We're proud to select Ben Shapiro as our first 'One to Watch.'"

Redrock Broadcasting Adds KZYN as Fourth FM Station


KZYN-FM
KZYN-FM

Redrock Broadcasting adds newly-constructed KZYN-FM/Toquerville, UT, as it's fourth full power FM station serving the greater St. George market area. KZYN airs an Adult Rock format targeting adults 25-54 on 104.1 FM and is branded as "Zion 104.1" reflecting its proximity to majestic Zion National Park in Southern Utah.

"We are very excited to bring Zion 104.1 to Southern Utah. There is no other station like Zion 104.1 and listeners and advertisers will love it. A world class area like Southern Utah, deserves a world class radio station like Zion 104.1," said the company in a release. "Zion 104.1's adult rock format has been highly researched exclusively for Southern Utah and will include World Class Rock Hits from the past several decades in addition to new Adult Rock releases."

KZYN-FM (Zion 104.1) joins three other Redrock stations: KURR (Mix 103.1) KRQX (Kool 98.9) and KUTQ (Coyote 102.3).

Salem Media Group Partners with Aptivada


Aptivada, a media software provider, has added Salem Media Group as a new client. As part of the multi-year agreement, Aptivada will be powering contesting, promotions, database management and newsletters for Salem's 116 radio stations nationwide.

"We are ecstatic to bring on a client the caliber of Salem Media Group," said Aptivada co-founder, Creighton Green. "They have incredible reach and understand the power of digital media. We look forward to a long partnership with them"

"After an extensive vetting process, it was clear Aptivada had the aptitude and attitude to be our partner. The onboarding process was extremely smooth and in the few short weeks since our launch, we're already seeing a payoff. The tools Aptivada brings to the table empower our stations to increase listener engagement and generate revenue in ways that we didn't have before our partnership," said Rodney Whitaker, Director of Digital Operations.

Brian Gary Set to Depart KUAD (K99) Fort Collins-Greeley


Brian Gary
Brian Gary

Veteran air personality Brian Gary will depart Country KUAD-FM (K99) Fort Collins-Greeley, CO, on January 25. Gary, a 2017 Country Radio Hall of Fame inductee and multiple time winner and nominee for CMA Broadcast Personality of the Year, told his listeners "I've decided it's time to ride away. I've been talking about this for a long, long time. Today is that day for me. I have loved every minute of this. There is no person on Earth who has been more blessed than me."

Gary tells RADIO ONLINE, "I have had a career that has been beyond anyone's wildest dreams. I could've never imagine the things that have happened to me but I've decided that it's time to see what is next. I have enjoyed every minute of the past 30 years but I'm looking forward to sleeping in and staying up late with my wife and making my world a little smaller. It has been an honor to have been so welcomed in the country music family. My thanks to Townsquare Media and all the others who allowed me to live my dream."

"Brian has made an undeniable impact in our community -- I've met very few individuals quite as passionate as Brian, I wish him all the best on his next ride," added Townsquare Media Northern Colorado President & CRO Evan Harrison.

"All of us at Townsquare are so grateful for everything Brian has done for Northern Colorado, for Country Radio, and for our company. He's one of the best that has ever done it," commented SVP Programming Kurt Johnson.

NHPR's ''Bear Brook'' Taps AdLarge's cabana for Ad Sales


AdLarge cabana
AdLarge cabana

AdLarge Media's digital audio advertising unit, cabana, adds "Bear Brook," an investigative podcast from New Hampshire Public Radio (NHPR), to its content portfolio. Hosted by NHPR reporter Jason Moon, "Bear Brook" has captured the attention of audiences and criminologists with a decades-old mystery involving four unidentified bodies found in two barrels in New Hampshire's Bear Brook State Park in the 80's.

Launched in early October, the first six episodes of "Bear Brook" garnered more than 1.1 million downloads, and the series continues to add new fans each week. Moon's reporting chronicles the hunt for a serial killer, and the investigative techniques based on genetic genealogy that may change the way murders are investigated in the future.

"Jason Moon brings thoughtful investigative reporting to the Bear Brook murders, drawing in listeners with the unpredictable findings of this fascinating case," noted AdLarge and cabana Co-Founder and Co-CEO Cathy Csukas. "Bear Brook is a highly engaging audio environment for our advertisers, and we are delighted to welcome Jason Moon and Bear Brook to cabana's growing roster of true crime podcast titles."

"With Bear Brook, we knew we had a terrific product, grounded in excellent storytelling and sound design," added New Hampshire Public Radio Interim Executive Director Mark Kaplan. "cabana delivers the audio advertising expertise that will help us generate the revenue we need to continue to produce informative and inspiring content. We look forward to working with the cabana team to expand our engaged audience and identify like-minded advertisers."

Bear Brook is hosted on the Megaphone platform, which provides data and addressable targeting that reaches listeners across all apps. Earlier this month, "Bear Brook" was named one of the "18 Best True Crime Podcasts for Mystery Readers" by Book Riot.

Salem Media Group/Pittsburgh Appoints Brad Marshall as GM


Brad A. Marshall
Brad A. Marshall

Salem Media Group appoints Brad A. Marshall as General Manager for the company's cluster in Pittsburgh, PA. Marshall previously led iHeartMedia and Cumulus stations in Youngstown, OH and Ohio Midland Newsgroup and Bridge Media Group in Steubenville, OH. Marshall said, "Salem Media Group's superior reputation and focus on delivering powerful content and results makes me excited to join the team."

Salem Regional VP Chris MacCourtney added, "Brad's 25-year leadership track record with companies like Cumulus and iHeart has given him great experience in leading teams of media professionals. We believe he's the right leader to take our Pittsburgh cluster into the future."

Cumulus Media Launches Radio's First-Ever Lead Guarantee


Cumulus Media
Cumulus Media

Cumulus Media is launching a program utilizing the proven effectiveness and reach of broadcast radio, combined with the targeting capabilities of its digital products. The program, announced today by Dave Milner and Bob Walker, the EVPs of Operations of Cumulus Media's Radio Station Group, will support local advertisers' number one objective: attracting more customers. Cumulus plans to guarantee participating local advertisers a minimum number of Engaged Potential Customers (EPCs) -- listeners who have contacted the business as a result of the coordinated program. Should the program not deliver the guaranteed results, the business will receive free advertising.

"Marketers took notice of our commitment to results when we debuted the Westwood One ROI Guarantee and challenged us to deliver something similar to our local advertisers. After touting the benefits of a combined radio and digital campaign, we're now putting our money where our mouth is in our local markets with the EPC Guarantee," said Milner.

Walker added, "Using radio's exceptional 10:1 ROI, and a proven 19% lift when messages are coordinated between media platforms, we are delivering a hyper-efficient brand building and customer generation program all in one. We've known all along that we can be an advertiser's one-stop shop for results; now we guarantee it."

"As a long-time buyer of radio, I've always known what an effective and efficient medium radio is, but this program delivers a new kind of confidence," said Chemistry Advertising EVP/Media Director Jeff Abbott. "By combining radio and digital solutions, Cumulus Media is taking attribution to the next level by guaranteeing what every business actually wants - engaged potential customers."

The EPC Guarantee will launch in 65 Cumulus markets later this month, in the home and professional services categories, and will be available in all 90 Cumulus markets in 2019.

Entercom Appoints Sarah Harris as VP of Social Impact


Sarah Harris
Sarah Harris

Entercom names Sarah Harris as Vice President of Social Impact, effective January 2. In this newly created role, Harris will oversee all aspects of Entercom's community engagement initiatives including its recently launched corporate social responsibility platform, Entercom Cares. Harris brings over 15 years of experience creating entertainment driven cause and social impact marketing campaigns to the company. Most recently, she served as Senior VP for Emmis Communications where she founded and led "Incite," a cause and social marketing division.

"We are delighted to welcome Sarah to the Entercom family as we continue to expand our corporate social responsibility efforts with the launch of Entercom Cares," said Entercom Executive VP/General Counsel Andrew Sutor. "Sarah is a pioneer in cause and social impact marketing, and wholeheartedly believes in the power of media to create positive impact. With her significant experience and expertise in creating and managing social impact programs and campaigns, Sarah will be a terrific addition to our team."

"Entercom does tremendous good in our communities across the country, contributing significant value to important nonprofit organizations each year through public service announcements, fundraising, volunteerism, and more," added Harris. "The company's expanded platform and influential, local connection nationwide provides the opportunity to lead on key social impact issues. I look forward to working with the Entercom team to build on the strength of our longstanding commitments by further engaging our employees, aligning our vast community service efforts with the values of our local consumers, and creating meaningful change in communities nationwide."

Previously, Harris served as Director of Community Outreach for Emmis Communications. Harris holds an MA in Philanthropic Studies and an MPA in Nonprofit Management from Indiana University and recently completed University of Pennsylvania's Executive Education in Social Impact Strategy.

NPR to Receive Inaugural iHeartRadio Podcast Pioneer Award


NPR
NPR

NPR will be honored with the first-ever iHeartRadio Podcast Pioneer Award at iHeartMedia's inaugural iHeartRadio Podcast Awards on January 18 at 8pm PT at the iHeartRadio Theater in Los Angeles. iHR will recognize NPR as an innovative force in the creation of the podcasting industry and will pay tribute to the on-profit multimedia organization's contributions to podcasting's expanding role in today's popular culture.

NPR launched its first digital-only podcasting predecessor, "All Songs Considered," in April, 2000 and officially debuted NPR Podcasts in August, 2005 with a full slate of 174 programs, including 17 original podcasts. In less than a year, they reached 13 million downloads for all of its podcast programming and reached more than 80 million downloads by February, 2007. Today, NPR remains a leading podcasting publisher with over 40 active podcasts on topics ranging from the day's news to arts, culture and science, that reach a unique monthly audience of 16,386,000 (per Podtrac).

"When we decided to honor the biggest names in podcasting with our first awards show for podcasts, we knew we wanted to recognize NPR's unparalleled impact on how millions of listeners consume audio content," said iHeartPodcast Network President Conal Byrne. "We're thrilled to be able to honor their trailblazing efforts with our first-ever iHeartRadio Podcast Pioneer Award in January."

"We are honored to receive the Podcast Pioneer Award. Podcasts have been a major source of innovation for NPR," said NPR Senior VP/Programming and Audience Development Anya Grundmann. "They have given our reporters the chance to flex their storytelling muscles, pursue creative ideas and longer stories, and play with form in ways not always possible on a daily show. They have also helped us connect with listeners in new ways and helped us evolve our sound."

The iHeartRadio Podcast Awards voted by the listeners to honor the very best in podcasting, will span 22 categories and will celebrate the incredible talent and wide variety of leaders across the booming podcasting industry. iHeartRadio Theater Los Angeles.

Hosted by Holly Frey, co-host of "Stuff You Missed in History Class," one of today's biggest history podcasts; Charlamagne Tha God, syndicated on-air host and co-host of "The Brilliant Idiots" and "The Breakfast Club" podcasts; and Country radio host Bobby Bones and creator of the Nashville Podcast Network, the event will run 90 minutes and will include a live audience with a live stream hosted by on-air and TV personality Mario Lopez.

Fans can vote for their favorite podcasts through January 6, 2019 online and socially across Twitter and Instagram. Visit iHeartPodcastAwards.com for a complete list of nominees and voting details.

NuVoodoo Media Services Ups Eric Cohen to EVP/Finance


Eric Cohen
Eric Cohen

NuVoodoo Media Services promotes Eric Cohen to the newly-created post of Executive Vice President/Finance. Cohen joined NuVoodoo Media Services earlier this year as VP/Finance. He's based in New York City. Previously, Cohen was Director of Operations & Production for Guaranteed Printing Service Co., Inc. in New York for nearly a decade. Prior to that, he served as an account executive for Westwood One in New York and was Corporate Ticket Sales Executive for the New York Mets.

NuVoodoo Media Services President Carolyn Gilbert said, "Eric's focus on finance and our company's growth has freed up resources to pursue new ventures within and outside the radio industry ... which we are vigorously pursuing. During his short tenure with the company, Eric has become the glue among all of NuVoodoo's departments, as well as the perfect liaison with our customers. We are all delighted to have Eric on the team and he's already proven himself to be the best hire at the perfect time in NuVoodoo's development."

Cohen added, "Coming to work for NuVoodoo is the crossroads of my professional track, converging my business management and media sales experience to join the leading media research and marketing company. NuVoodoo and Carolyn Gilbert have given me the opportunity to put my accumulated skill set to work in a multi-leveled capacity within NuVoodoo's finance department, mixing day-to-day financial responsibilities while also servicing all factions of NuVoodoo's client services teams. I am excited to be part of NuVoodoo's future, as Carolyn Gilbert and her rock star crew continue as the trend-setting partner for results-driven research and marketing."

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Cumulus Media: Country's Kane Brown is a busy man with the release of his sophomore album, ''Experiment,'' hitting this Friday, but he stopped by ''Ty, Kelly and Chuck'' studios in Nashville to talk about his new album, ''100,000 Thank Yous'' and performing in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. L-R: Ty Bentli, Kane Brown and Chuck Wicks