Robservations on the media beat:
Facing declining revenue at its music stations, CBS Radio Chicago is shaking up its sales leadership for the third time in 16 months. Chad Feldman was named vice president and director of sales this week in the latest realignment under Tim Pohlman, senior vice president and market manager of the seven-station group. Feldman, who joined CBS Radio Chicago in 2006, most recently headed sales for all-news WBBM AM 780/WCFS FM 105.9 and sports/talk WSCR AM 670. Insiders say Pohlman is under increasing pressure to boost revenue as CBS Radio is poised to merge with Entercom Communications.
Tribune Media, parent company of “Chicago’s Very Own” WGN-Channel 9 and news/talk WGN AM 720, moved closer to a sale Thursday thanks to a favorable ruling by federal regulators. In easing limits on broadcast TV ownership, the FCC removed an obstacle to the rumored acquisition of Tribune Media by Sinclair Broadcast Group. Tribune Media said in a statement: “Today’s action by the Federal Communications Commission is a welcome step towards creating a more level playing field for all local broadcasters in their relationships with television networks, satellite operators, cable providers, and streaming video services. Ultimately, the FCC’s decision will serve the important interest of localism by enabling broadcasters to better serve their communities.”
Joyce Winnecke, former president of Tribune Content Agency and associate editor of the Chicago Tribune, has been named executive vice president and general manager/media group for the Professional Convention Management Association. The Chicago-based organization is the leading global community and educator for business event strategists. Calling PCMA “a thought-leader and innovator in the industry,” Winnecke said: “I’m looking forward to leading a charged culture, one intent on creating and seizing new opportunities and moving this successful organization to the next level.”
Bill Cochran, whose great production work has enhanced Chicago radio for more than 35 years, has been named radio image director at WRME LP 87.7, the Weigel Broadcasting soft rock/oldies station known as MeTV FM. He succeeds Michael Horn, who resigned to become manager of game presentation for the Chicago Blackhawks. Cochran most recently was director of creative content at CBS Radio adult album alternative WXRT FM 93.1.
Lilia Chacon, Chicago public relations executive and former reporter for Fox-owned WFLD-Channel 32, has been tapped to emcee this year’s Silver Circle Awards. The event April 28 at the Millennium Knickerbocker Hotel will honor six living broadcast veterans — Mary Ann Ahern, James Angio, Steve Baskerville, Ron Born, Katie Carrillo and Sam Ventura — and three posthumously — Paul Hogan, Gene Siskel and Phil Walters. Sponsored by the Chicago/Midwest chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, the Silver Circle recognizes individuals who have devoted 25 years or more to the television industry and have made significant contributions to Chicago broadcasting. Chacon is a 2016 inductee.