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Radio Interview

Julie Headrick



New Orleans


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Julie's Career Capsule
I began working for the WBSN/ LifeSongs organization when I was 20 years old in the Fall of 1998. I started out working as Office Manager at a small AM Southern Gospel station our organization owned in Atlanta. That position lead to a morning show position. After 18 months in Atlanta, I was asked to transfer back to our primary station in New Orleans, where I hosted our afternoon show for a while. After a couple of years, I took the position of Operations Coordinator, or as my business card says Operations Cood-i-nator. I have been in this position for several years, except for the year following Hurricane Katrina. In this position, I am responsible for coordinating our station events, promotions, community service projects, interviews, etc. I also currently co-host the afternoon show.


1. Personally how do you keep the ministry in the “business”? 

As co-host of the afternoon show, I am very fortunate to be able to connect to listeners through email, myspace, facebook, and phone calls. We are able to pray with listeners, rejoice with them, laugh with them. Having this connection is a constant reminder to me that this is a ministry, not just a business.


2. Overall, how is Christian radio different today, from 5 years ago?

I can only speak of what I know, which is Christian radio in New Orleans. New Orleans drastically changed through Hurricane Katrina and our station changed as well. Our focus is now upon helping our listeners rebuild their lives. In a city where so much can be depressing, we try to offer the encouragement that God is still good. Much of what I have noticed as a change in our station is directly due to Hurricane Katrina, and I can't really speak for other stations.


3. What do you think are the main characteristics of a Christian radio Promotion Director?

I believe a Christian radio promotions director has to be creative and organized but also has to have a heart for the listeners. I don't consider myself very creative, but I am fortunate that we have a very creative programming team that consists of our music director, production director, program director, and myself. We brainstorm ideas weekly and I try to pull the details together. And it's not too hard to have a heart for the people of New Orleans. They have been through so much yet they are still so full of life and love.


4. What criteria do you require for a promotion to air on your station?

We don't have a set criteria that we run our promotions through. We probably should. With every promotion we do, we try to make sure it is something that relates to our listeners. If it's a contest, the prize has to be something valuable to the listener and something they are willing to invest time in. We also want to have fun promotions, a promotion that will make listeners laugh or at least lighten their mood in a city that often has a heavy heart.


5. What kind of promotions work best for Christian radio?

The promotions that work best for our listeners in New Orleans seem to be promotions that have heart. The people of New Orleans know what it is like to need help from others, so they are willing to give back when they are able. In the past we have had contests with great prizes for Valentine's Day, Father's Day, and Mother's Day. This past year we turned those promotions into community projects. For Valentine's Day, we collected used cell phones that were recycled for phone cards and given to military separated from their families. For Father's Day, we had a Strike Out Hunger event at Rock N' Bowl, a locally famous bowling alley. In exchange for free bowling with Dad and a Jadon Lavik concert, our listeners brought non-perishable food items for our local chapter of Second Harvest Food Bank. For Mother's Day we collected diapers for the Baptist Friendship House, a local shelter for mothers and children. We had a better response to these community projects than we normally have for contests for these holidays.


6. How do you think Christian Record labels can better serve Christian radio?

I feel we have really good relationships with the Christian Record labels. I can't remember a promotion, interview, or appearance that we have requested that has not been granted.


7. In your opinion what are the biggest obstacles facing Christian radio today?

I think the biggest obstacle facing Christian radio is technology. Today with ipods and websites, people can listen to exactly what they want exactly when they want to hear it. I believe there is a way to work this to our advantage. We just have to figure out how.


8. What do you believe is the primary role of the Christian radio air personality?

I think the primary role of a Christian on-air personality is to relate to the listeners. Be that through talking about the latest news that is on everyone's mind or informing them of events that are of interest to them. I also think, we should uplift and encourage them. If the listeners are having a bad day, they should be able to turn on their radio and re-focus on the things that matter.


9. What (if any) Christian radio stations do you consider as innovators today?

I think Z 88.3 out of Orlando has everything so well pulled together. I respect that. I also think the guys at M88 in Albuquerque are pretty cool. I met Joey and Steveo at GMA this past year and they are real people that seem to be innovative in their ideas.


10. Where do you see Christian radio in 5 years?

I would love to see Christian radio super local. For stations to really represent their listening audience. I also hope to see changes in Christian radio that will allow it to progress with technology. That we will give people a reason to listen to radio instead of listening to their ipod or online.



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