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VAB 35th Anniversary
VAB 50th Anniversary
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Barlow, Kasz and McGehee Headed to VAB Hall of Fame
Three individuals will be enshrined in the Vermont Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame later this year. The VAB has announced that the trio of honorees will include VOX AM/FM owner and General Manager Ken Barlow, Local 22 WVNY/Local 44 WFFF Operations Director Ken Kasz and longtime WJOY morning host Ginny McGehee.
In addition, the VAB has announced the 2015 Broadcaster of the Year award will be presented to the WPTZ-TV/WNNE-TV news team for its outstanding coverage of the Dannemora prison escape.
Longtime WPTZ-TV news reporter and Vermont PBS host Stewart Ledbetter will receive the VAB’s Distinguished Service Award in honor of his outstanding career.
The Alan H. Noyes Community Service Award will be presented to Rutland radio station WSYB-AM in honor of their long-running WSYB Christmas Fund campaign.
Ken Barlow began his broadcasting career at WCFR-AM in Springfield while still in high school. After college, Barlow worked as a full-time disc jockey and programmer at WKNE-AM in Keene, New Hampshire, WDOT-AM in Burlington, WKBR-AM in Manchester, New Hampshire and WPTR-AM in Albany, New York.
He returned to Vermont and bought WVNR-AM in Poultney, the first of many station acquisitions. Later, as a partner in Vox Communications and the Vox Radio Group, he put two local stations on the air, WCVP-FM (Champ 101.3) and WXPS, now WXZO-FM (Planet 96.7). The group also obtained WEZF-FM (Star 92.9) and WEAV-AM. The group sold the stations to Capstar, which merged with Clear Channel, which eventually sold the stations back to the group.
Barlow and his wife Lori also purchased WVTK-FM, licensed to Port Henry, NY with studios in Middlebury. Ken continues to do a regular air shift for WVTK.
Ken Kasz began his broadcasting career while attending SUNY Fredonia. He worked as an intern and part-time master control operator at WUTV-TV in Buffalo, New York while getting his degree. He then worked full-time for WUTV for a dozen years before joining WVNY-TV in Burlington as Director of Broadcast Operations. In that position, Ken oversaw all non-sales aspects of the station’s growth, including the addition of WFFF-TV, the DTV transition and the studio relocation to Colchester.
A ten-year veteran of the VAB Board of Directors, including two years as VAB President, Ken spearheaded efforts to increase subsidies to all Vermont radio and television stations to ensure FCC compliance through the Alternative Broadcast Inspection Program. He also helped all Vermont stations with financial assistance to successfully complete a mandatory upgrade of all Emergency Alert System receivers.
Ginny McGehee is the longest-serving full-time female radio personality in Vermont history. A native of Philadelphia, Ginny began her broadcasting career at WNBZ-AM in Saranac Lake, New York in 1980, where she hosted a daily show and broadcast local high school hockey and football play-by-play. In 1983, she moved to Burlington after being hired by WJOY Program Director Joel Najman.
Outside of a successful stint as the afternoon disc jockey on sister station WQCR-FM (now WOKO-FM), Ginny has spent most of her time on the air at WJOY. She and Steve Pelkey began hosting the weekday “Breakfast Table” program in 1993 and Ginny has hosted the show by herself for the past 15 years.
Ginny serves as Public Service Director for all five Hall Communications stations in Vermont. She also is a longtime board member of the Vermont and New Hampshire Chapter of the American Red Cross and is a former board member of Champlain Valley Crimestoppers.
She emcees numerous events, including the Alzheimer’s Walk and the Burlington Christmas Tree lighting ceremony. She received a Distinguished Service Award from the VAB in 2011. She and her husband, VAB Executive Director Jim Condon, live in Colchester.
Stewart Ledbetter is being honored for his 31 years of work as a News Reporter, News Anchor, News Director, Bureau Chief and Senior Political Reporter for WPTZ-TV/WNNE-TV, and for his eight years as the host of the reporters roundtable program “Vermont This Week” on Vermont PBS.
From the Amtrak Disaster in Williston just 3 months after he began in 1984, to the ice storm of 1998, and more late nights and weekends at the Vermont Statehouse than he would care to admit, Stewart has been there for all of the major news stories over the last three decades.
Recently, Stewart and his colleagues were recognized as a national Edward R. Murrow award winner for his station’s ongoing coverage of the DCF crisis in Vermont.
The Broadcaster of the Year Award will be presented to the WPTZ-TV news team for their coverage of the escapes from the Clinton Correctional Facility in Dannemora.
Over 23 days, the WPTZ team was live for more than 100 hours with more than 1,000 live reports from the search area. The station often found itself in wall-to-wall coverage for hours at a time no matter the day or time-of-day. Those live reports were often at times when critical public safety information to lock doors and windows was being relayed in real time from law enforcement to the public through WPTZ's airwaves.
The Alan H. Noyes Community Service Award is named in honor of the longtime Executive Director of the VAB. This year, the VAB will honor WSYB-AM in Rutland.
The station has conducted its “WSYB Christmas Fund” campaign for more than 40 years. In that time, the station has raised more than one million dollars to provide gift cards to needy families so that they can purchase clothes and toys for their children.
Another award, the Snyder-Teffner award for excellence behind the scenes has not yet been announced. Stay tuned!
The VAB Hall of Fame Banquet will be held Saturday, December 5 at the Hilton Burlington.
FREE EEO WEBINAR OCT. 14
The VAB, in cooperation with the Michigan Association of Broadcasters is pleased to offer you an important FREE webinar on Wednesday, October 14 at 2 p.m. This webinar should be of interest to all General Managers, Station Managers and HR personnel, among others.
To register, please send your name to Jim Condon at email@example.com. We'll send you the link for the webinar and an email address to send in your questions during the webinar. There will be an archived version of the webinar available on our website (www.vab.org) shortly after the event for registered stations. Here's the information:
Navigating the FCC’s Equal Employment
Opportunity Rules & Public File Requirements
Presented by: David Oxenford, Wilkinson Barker Knauer LLP
Wednesday, October 14, 2015
With the changes in ownership, personnel, and hiring efforts that inevitably occur at stations over time, it is important that station owners, managers, and hiring personnel are on top of the FCC’s rules and requirements for EEO and Public File.
This session will provide a primer on the FCC’s Equal Employment Opportunity rules, including the outreach required for the opening of jobs at the stations, the non-vacancy related activities that stations should be engaging in, and the recordkeeping requirements to make sure you keep all the necessary documents to support what the station did.
This webinar will also detail the obligations for station’s public files. What documents need to be in the file? How long must they be retained? What are the usual trouble spots for broadcasters?
The goal of the session is to refresh your understanding of the rules, provide insight into the FCC’s enforcement and guidance in the past few years, and highlight some common pitfalls.
To register, send your name to Jim Condon at firstname.lastname@example.org. In return, you'll receive a link for the webinar, a phone number for troubleshooting and an email address to send in your questions during the webinar.
FREE Auto Advertising Webinar
VAB members are invited to tune in a free webinar Oct. 13 at noon designed to help your station attract and keep more local auto dealer advertising. The seminar will be hosted by auto advertising expert John Tkac and is presented by LBS (Local Broadcast Sales) as part of their “Second Tuesday” webinar series. To register for this free webinar, please visit this link: