soon as the microphone was turned on at WEHC, Emory & Henry College,
Emory, VA in 1998, I knew I wanted to pursue radio. I spent a lot of
time moving through the ranks of my college FM (with 100 watts,) and
became General Manager as a junior, a job typically set aside for
seniors. From Emory & Henry, I interned at WAY-FM in Nashville, and
Love 89.1 in Knoxville. I came to WCQR through a part-time weekend
shift. I was hired as an on-air, weekend personality through my
senior year at school. Afterwards, WCQR was kind enough to extend a
full-time production director/evening talent position as my first
job in radio. Since then, I have been WCQR's Afternoon talent, APD,
and now, Program Director.
Personally how do you keep the ministry in the “business”?
I don't think you separate the two. Our
business IS ministry.
we say and do is a reflection of our transformed lives, and we must
try to model after the one who transformed us. Jesus formed
relationships. Jesus sang. Jesus laughed. Jesus cried. Jesus gave
praise. Jesus even had to figure out a budget for his group. If we
are true to our calling, then I think the two are inseparable.
2. Overall, how is
Christian radio different today, from 5 years ago?
Christian radio has become smarter, and more competitive, because of
that intelligence. We are constantly striving to connect to our
audience in different ways, and are winning. Christian radio has put
aside the days of anything goes for a focused strategic plan. We are
beating out formats in our market, because good radio is king! I
don't think anyone 5 years ago would've imagine how the "Christian
station" in town would be their fiercest competition.
3. What do you think
are the main characteristics of today’s Christian radio PD?
A PD needs to have a passion for great
radio, the creativity to bring that about, a focused plan with set
goals to achieve, great coaching and cheerleading skills, a staff
that follows their lead (and wants to see the whole team succeed,)
someone who will hold them accountable and challenge them, a
learning spirit, and a humble heart.
4. What criteria do you require for a song to be played on your
I feel picking songs is an art balanced
on research and a good gut check. For me, a song must have
incredible lyrics, a great hook, vocal integrity, keep you
interested all the way through, and must fit with the format.
5. What kind of promotions work best for Christian radio?
promotions are those that you can offer an experience.
special for (in my case) her. Go beyond the prize closet, and bring
the world to lay at her feet. Show her YOU are listening by offering
things that she needs, that she wants, and things that she cares
6. How do you think Christian Record labels can better serve
I think the record labels do a great
job, and I appreciate the fact that they work with us. I think we
all need to continue to forge open and honest relationships with one
another. The greater the friendships, the better this industry
7. In your opinion what are the biggest obstacles facing Christian
The biggest obstacle that we face is
thinking that we know it all, and are doing it right. We must
continue to learn and self-examine for the betterment of the
station, the community, the listener, and ultimately for God.
8. What do you believe is the primary role of the Christian radio
The main responsibility of an on-air
personality is to connect to their audience by relating life in a
genuine, friendly way.
What (if any) Christian radio stations do you consider as innovators
I would say a select people are
innovators, rather than the stations...I will name one person. I had
the privilege of being mentored by him...Jason Sharp (former WCQR PD
now PD at KTIS/Miineapolis) .
Where do you see Christian radio in 5 years?
Taking the world by storm!