New Chicago radio boss on the beat at iHeartMedia

Earl Jones

Earl Jones

There’s a new top man at iHeartMedia’s seven radio stations in Chicago.

Earl Jones, who’s been market president for the iHeartMedia Chicago cluster since 2005, was shifted Monday to senior vice president of urban operations for the company. He’ll continue to be based in Chicago.

Matt Scarano

Matt Scarano

Succeeding Jones as market president here is Matt Scarano, a former director of sales for the Chicago group, who’s been market president for iHeartMedia Atlanta since 2012.

Formerly known as Clear Channel Media and Entertainment, iHeartMedia operates urban contemporary WGCI FM 107.5, gospel WGRB AM 1390, Top 40 WKSC FM 103.5, adult contemporary WLIT FM 93.9, urban adult-contemporary WVAZ FM 102.7, Spanish pop WNUA FM 95.5, and Spanish sports/talk ESPN Deportes Radio at 97.5 FM. The company also holds the license for urban news/talk WVON AM 1690.

Jones was a defensive cornerback for the Atlanta Falcons from 1980 until he was placed on injured reserve and left the NFL to start a career in broadcast sales in 1984. He worked for Clear Channel in Atlanta, Detroit and Louisville before his move to Chicago in 2005, when he succeeded John Gehron as regional vice president.

Unlike his predecessor, Jones kept a low profile during his nine-year tenure here and was little-known outside of the company.

“I’ve known Earl for many years and this opportunity is perfect for him,” Tom McConnell, executive vice president of operations for iHeartMedia, said in a statement. “This new role allows him to take advantage of his solid relationships and strong understanding of the urban marketplace and use them to benefit our entire company.”

Scarano spent 11 years with ABC and Citadel Broadcasting as general sales manager of WKHX and WYAY in Atlanta before joining Clear Channel Chicago in 2009.

Of Scarano, McConnell said: “Matt has done an incredible job for us in Atlanta driving both ratings and revenue. He is a proven leader with a strong strategic mind and is the perfect choice to lead our incredible brands in Chicago.”