Seattle Weekly archive: Donovan’s grief

Mark Worth [Mon., Oct 9 2006] — G. Michael Donovan, the sharp-tongued president of Philadelphia-based Entercom’s Seattle operation, has been toppled from his throne atop Seattle’s largest radio empire. According to Media Inc., Entercom—which owns eight Puget Soundarea stations including KBSG, KIRO, KISW, KMTT, and KNDD—told Donovan that his job was too big for one person to manage. Indeed, top-rated KIRO-AM saw its Arbitron numbers fall 25 percent in the past year; third-rated KBSG’s numbers dropped nearly 10 percent. When told he’d have to share duties with another Entercom executive, Donovan walked. He says he’s still “part of” Entercom but wouldn’t comment further.

Donovan was freer with his words in January, when, in a letter to this paper’s editor, he defended his industry’s use of “Virtual Radio Programming”—a prefab, satellite-based system pioneered by Seattle’s Research Group that allows music and DJ banter to be recorded in one city and replayed in another. A canned show by KBSG’s Fastlane Phillips, for instance, airs on a station in Huntsville, Alabama, owned by Austin, Texasbased Capstar, the nation’s largest radio conglomerate. “Fastlane Phillips,” Donovan wrote in his January letter, “is infinitely more talented than whoever might be available in Huntsville, Alabama.” Folks living in that city of 160,000 near the Tennessee border aren’t so quick to agree; the Huntsville Times may hold a contest to find a local replacement. “It’s slick-sounding, very professional, but it’s not local radio,” a program director from a competing Huntsville station told the Times. “We’re proud to be a part of this community. There’s a face and a human being behind it.”


October 1972 – KVI, which has been programming syndicated oldtime radio programs, now is presenting on weekly basis original half-hour drama series. Entitled Dameron, program concerns adventures of Sam Spade-like character (but not private eye) who solves problems. It is broadcast 10-10:30 p.m. on Tuesdays. Jim French, station’s afternoon personality, writes and directs program, with Hardwick, morning personality, playing title role and Lou Gillette, KVI public affairs director, doing announcing. Others in cast are professional actors.

January 1966 – KTAC AM & FM sold by Jerry Geehan, Richard R. Hodge and other stockholders to M. Lamont Bean, Dan L. Starr, and Ronald A. Murphy for $191,381. Mr. Bean is a partner in a Seattle investment firm. Mr. Starr has printing interests there. Mr. Murphy, a Seattle lawyer, has broadcasting holdings including KELA Centralia and KUEN Wenatchee, and KFQD Anchorage. KTAC went on the air in 1942 and operates fulltime on 850 kc with 1 kw. KTAC -FM was added in 1948 and operates on 103.9 me with 830 w.

April 1980 – Robert E. Lee Hardwick, former air personality on KVI joins KAYO as morning talk show host…J. Michael Kenyon, baseball writer for Seattle Post-Intelligencer, assumed additional duties as member of sports team of KVI…Alan Ray, anchor, KIRO 710 joins KVI as anchor and reporter…Arnold Nelson, audio systems designer, Sunrise Systems Worldwide, joins production staff of KSTW TV 11.

April 1971 – If you have a first class ticket, a mature voice, are good at production, and have a few years in the biz, then reed on. KTAC, Tacoma is looking for a man like you. We do prefer Northwest or West Coast men. KTAC is a 10,000 watt rocker at 85; and we’re number one. Rush resume, tape, and pic to: Derek Shannon, KTAC, Box 11335, Tacoma, Wash. 98411.

May 1973 – KTAC Tacoma- Sold by Radio 850 Corp. to Entertainment Communications Inc. for $1.5 million. Buyer owns KLEF(AM) Houston, WAYL(AM) Minneapolis, KBRG (AM) San Francisco and has purchased interest in KBSA(TV) Guasti, Calif., subject to FCC approval. Principals of ECI are Joseph M. Field, Philadelphia attorney, and Herbert Kean and Joseph F. Uricchio, both physicians in that city. KTAC is full time on 850 khz with 10 kw, directional at night. KTAC -FM operates on 103.9 mhz with 950 w and antenna 490 feet above average terrain.

December 1979 – Thom Sheridan, from KTAC joins KNBQ FM as account executive.

G Michael Donovan takes the helm at KTAC

[R&R Magazine – June 1990]

July 1986 – KMFY & WAYL Minneapolis VP-GM Peg Dempsey has accepted the VP-GM chair at Entercom’s co-owned AC/Easy Listening combo KTAC & KBRD Tacoma. Dempsey had worked at the Seattle stations before as Promotion Director, Account Executive, and GSM prior to moving to Minneapolis in 1984. She succeeds 12-year VP-GM Harold Greenberg, who has left the stations.
January 1981 – KTAC longtime PD Rick Hansen resigns and is replaced by Tom Jeffries.
April 1981 – KTAC PD Tom Jeffries and air staffer Kirk Russell walk Washington state coastline for March of Dimes…Former
KJR morning man Charlie Brown to program First Media’s KBLE-FM…
December 1981 – Tom Jeffries resigns as Program Director of KTAC and 11-year station veteran Bruce Cannon moves in from sales to take the PD reins.

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