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Radio Interview



Donna Cruz

Program Director/Mornings

WAY FM / West Palm Beach


 I began my radio career in El Paso in at KXCR public radio. Then Power 102, for a three year stay before moving up to San Antonio for three years at KTFM. After CHR experimented with Hot Country and Smooth Jazz before enjoying three years at Classic Rocker KZEP also in San Antonio.  While there, I also reported a weekly entertainment segment for the local NBC TV affiliate called ďThe Hot TicketĒ and recorded voice overs for t.v and radio. That led to a move to MKT 16ís Hot A/C KS95 in Minneapolis/ St. Paul and here I am now in West Palm Beach!

1. How did God put you in His service at WAY FM? 

I have spent the last several years studying and learning how to follow His guidance. Sometimes I wished the Holy Spirit had a mouth as loud as mine because it seems like it took me a long time to start listening!

2. You've just recently landed your new position as PD at WAY FM in West Palm Beach. What are some of your initial observations of the Christian market there and where you see WAY FM's position? 

 My initial welcoming was amazing.  Every magazine online and print was talking about us.  It was clear from the e-mails I received and the ink we were getting in the publications that WAY FM was respected by far more than those on staff!  When an organization is respected by jocks you know itís gonna be great!  I say that because jocks donít have to be PC. We say what we know and spread the word.  So initially I was blown away by the response from the radio world both Christian and secular.  WAY FM is a very strong part of the community.  Everyone from Andrea (our promotions director) to Mike (the station manager) is so plugged in to the community.  They REALLY care whatís happening instead of just putting on the warm and fuzzy show to see if they qualify for a trophy at the end of the year.

 3. You've spent a good part of your career in secular radio what do you see as the main differences with Christian radio?

Wow!  Where do I begin?  We pray before office parties, before meetings.  We begin Mondays with devotional time.  The whole office.  Talent is not based on how edgy or innuendo-ridden your show or promotion can be but on how skilled you are in your God-given gifts and talents.  These are just a few of the differences Iíve noticed in the last two weeks.

4. Why do you think there are so few female Christian radio PD's?

For the most part itís just a ratio thing.  There are just not as many women in radio over all as there are guys.  For instance, most of the other stations Iíve worked for, Power 102, KZEP, KTFM,- aside from the morning show team I was always the only full time female on the air. 

5. How can Christian record labels better serve Christian radio?

Most are doing a great job.  Some could benefit from realizing that the music industry overall is an aggressive industry and YES, youíre allowed to be passionate and aggressive even if your pushing Christian artists on Christian labels. 

6. When searching for new CCM radio on air talent what do you look for?

Good talent.  I would assume that if an on air talent was looking at a gig in Christian radio they are Christian which is obviously important.  There are times when listeners will call the station either the jock on air or the receptionist to pray with someone.  But talent is what I would look for.  Phones, ability to relate to the audience, humor,  board skills- the usual.

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

Stereotypes and hypocrites.  We all do or have done our share of this.  Hereís an example of what I mean.  An elementary school lets the kids dance in the classroom  to j-lo or Christina at the class Christmas party but  they are NOT ALLOWED to play Zoegirl or Out of Eden.  Thatís pretty sad. We have to remember that itís freedom of religion not freedom from religion.  

            8. What do you beleive is the primary role of the Christian radio air personailty today?

Ministry.  Thatís what itís all about.  Spreading the word and touching those who donít know Jesus.  We just get to do it in this fun and hip environment.

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

One of my favorite Christian radio stations because they are not afraid to be hip as they wanna be is WNCB in Duluth.  They do a great job of being local (even though they have several translators), the music is right on track, their imaging is everything any CHR should be and in all of this they are accountable to God in all that they do.

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

Look where it was a little more than five years ago?   Most contemporary Christian stations were playing stuff we would classify as country.  But the lyrics were up to date and there wasnít a church organ behind it so it was called contemporary.  Itís more up to Christian artists to continue to grow and radio will grow as well.  There are already Christian radio stations like WAY FM that are competitors in the market having a morning show in the top five.  In five years I see Christian Hit Radio giving every station the market a challenge like theyíve never known.


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