March 22, 2006

Radio Dots & Dashes (March 22 Edition)

Mike Preston, currently VP of Contemporary Hits programming for CBS Radio in Seattle, has been named VP of programming for All News KCBS/740 and '70s/'80s Hits KFRC/99.7 in San Francisco, according to reports in both All Access and Billboard Radio Monitor.

Preston's role as head of CHR programming for CBS/Seattle gave him the dual title of program director of the company's KISS 106.1 (KBKS), a Top 40 station. Both KCBS and KFRC are also owned by CBS Radio.

Preston had previously worked in the area as Mark Preston at KDON/Salinas and KOKQ/Monterey, as well as KSFM/Sacramento. He moved on to KSDO/San Diego in 1983, and returned to program KWSS/San Jose in 1986. From there, he landed at the legendary WPLJ/New York, then at KBKS in 1997.

While the overwhelming majority of his experience has been in CHR/Top 40, he has also served as station imaging voice for Eighties-formatted stations in Seattle, Philadelphia, Houston, Louisville, Dayton, Jacksonville, Honolulu and Birmingham, according to his bio on "440: Satisfaction." It may be quite interesting to see what he has planned for KCBS and KFRC...

Last December, the FCC deleted the license of Concord's KWUN, which had operated at 1480 kHz. since the early 1960s, due to inactivity. The station's last owners of record were Chester Coleman of American Radio Brokers and Joe Buerry, who had also managed Contra Costa's KKIS a few years back.

On Monday (March 20) came word that Mr. Coleman, who was 62, passed away in his office in San Francisco. He had reportedly been suffering from cancer. A former station engineer, he had owned a variety of stations over the years across the country. He had donated many of his radio-related recordings to the Library of Broadcasting in 1997, mostly relating to programming formats...

World-famous Mike Amatori has produced a CD for KGO's 26th Annual Leukemia Cure-A-Thon — taking place this Friday and Saturday — featuring highlights of Ronn Owens' thirty years on the station.

The CD is available for an $85 pledge, but please be sure to mention on the memo line of your check that you are requesting the CD. Checks should be made made payable to "KGO Cure-A-Thon" and should be mailed to:

Ronn CD
c/o KGO Radio Cure-A-Thon
900 Front Street
San Francisco, Ca 94111

John Roszak, who had been an announcer at Classical KDFC/102.1 before moving to KQED/88.5 in 1974, died on February 13 in San Francisco. He was 57.

Shortly after joining KQED, he was shifted to Channel 9 — the station's television side — as a reporter and producer, working on local shows as well as contributing to PBS programs, including "The McNeil-Lehrer NewsHour." A Milwaukee native and graduate of the University of Chicago, he was most recently in charge of KQED's "This Week In California" news discussion series...

From Our Full Circle File: Nearly a hundred years ago, Charles David "Doc" Herrold founded a little experimental radio station and school of engineering in the Garden City Bank Building in downtown San Jose. That rudimentary station, which became licensed as KQW in the 1920s, was later purchased by CBS, moved to San Francisco, and renamed KCBS back in the 1940s. Now comes word that KCBS will move its Southbay news bureau to the Knight-Ridder Building at 50 West San Fernando Street in San Jose. Full circle? The K-R Building occupies the site were the Garden City Bank Building once stood. Staffers chancing upon the ghost of Doc Herrold in the halls and back rooms are advised to pay due respect...

With Darian O'Toole out and Turi Ryder in for what is being publicly referred to as a mere seat-filling role (we'll see) at FreeFM 106.9 (KIFR), Jimmy Baron of Atlanta's Alternative Rocker 99X (WNNX) has been brought in for a series of auditions — three so far, according to details published in the blog.