Four more to join WGN Radio Walk of Fame

WGN Radio Walk of Fame

Four Chicagoans with deep connections to WGN 720-AM will be added to the WGN Radio Walk of Fame, the Tribune Broadcasting news/talk station announced today.

This year’s inductees are: John Williams, longtime midday personality who began his career as a college intern for morning superstar Wally Phillips; Andrea Darlas, who resigned in April after 21 years as news anchor, reporter and program host; Marlene Wells, coordinator of sales promotion and merchandising, and a 52-year employee of the station; and Sam “Tenpin Tattler” Weinstein, the late host of a bowling show that aired for 60 years. Continue reading

Robservations: Mort Crim named to Illinois Broadcasters’ Hall of Fame

Mort Crim

Robservations on the media beat:

Mort Crim, the retired anchorman said to be the inspiration for Will Ferrell’s Ron Burgundy character, has been chosen for induction in the Illinois Broadcasters Association’s Hall of Fame. A native of West Frankfort, Illinois, who holds a master’s degree from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism, Crim began in the news department of WLS 890-AM in the early ’60s. He briefly worked in Chicago again in the late ’70s at CBS-owned WBBM-Channel 2. Of his Hall of Fame selection, Crim said: “I’m deeply honored. Even humbled — and for an anchorman, being humbled is quite an accomplishment.” Crim will be inducted June 13 during the IBA’s annual conference in Springfield. Continue reading

Santita Jackson to host mornings on progressive talk WCPT

Santita Jackson

Santita Jackson, the Chicago radio personality and political commentator, has been hired as morning host at WCPT 820-AM, the Newsweb Radio progressive talk station.

Jackson, eldest daughter of the Rev. Jesse Jackson, will succeed Bill Press, who’s stepping down from the syndicated program he has hosted for 14 years. Jackson’s show, airing from 6 to 8 a.m. weekdays, will debut Monday. Continue reading

‘Time to move on’: Kris Kridel to retire from WBBM Newsradio

Kris Kridel

Kris Kridel, one of Chicago radio’s premier journalists and one of its most familiar voices, is retiring after 34 years as a news anchor at WBBM 780-AM/WCFS 105.9-FM.

Kridel’s announcement came just two months after she cut back to part-time status and stepped down as afternoon drive anchor at the Entercom all-news station. Most recently she has been anchoring from noon to 3 p.m. weekdays, including the “Noon Business Hour,” which she has co-hosted since 2001. Continue reading

Robservations: CBS 2 puts ‘for rent’ sign on corner studio

CBS 2, 22 West Washington Street

Robservations on the media beat:

WBBM-Channel 2 continues to shrink before our eyes. In the latest retreat, the CBS-owned station is looking to rent out its former street-front studio in the Loop. Once touted as the crown jewel of the building (along with CBS 2’s long-dismantled Jumbotron), it’s become a white elephant for the company. With windows looking on to Daley Plaza, the 3,500 square-foot space at the northeast corner of Dearborn and Washington was used for CBS 2 newscasts from 2008 to 2017. But it’s been gathering dust since the station unveiled a new set in Studio B. So now the old two-story studio is being marketed as suitable for “restaurant/retail users,” according to commercial real estate advisor SVN Chicago. CBS 2 declined to comment. Continue reading

ESPN 1000 blasts Nielsen for ratings undercount

ESPN Chicago

A rare correction and admission of error by Nielsen Audio Thursday wasn’t enough to satisfy WMVP 1000-AM after the ESPN Radio sports/talk station was shortchanged in the latest Chicago radio ratings.

Acknowledging that it had failed to credit ESPN 1000 for its streaming simulcast in the April audience survey, Nielsen re-issued its market report with revised figures that combined over-the-air and digital listenership. Continue reading

Robservations: Nielsen bungles ratings for ESPN 1000

ESPN Chicago

Robservations on the media beat:

Nielsen Audio

ESPN Radio sports/talk WMVP 1000-AM is about to get a do-over in the ratings. In a confidential email to clients, Nielsen Audio acknowledged that it failed to credit the station for its streaming simulcast in the April audience survey. In rankings reported here last week, ESPN 1000 tied for 25th place with a 1.2 share. That’s expected to rise when Nielsen releases a revised Chicago report at noon today. No other stations were affected, according to Nielsen. It’s not the first time this year the company was caught with its pants down. In January Nielsen admitted it shortchanged stations in 48 markets (including Chicago) when it tabulated “abnormally low or non-existent” audience estimates for two days in December. Continue reading