When WMAQ-Channel 5 launches its new 24-hour digital channel next month, look for some familiar radio faces to be front and center. Plans call for the NBC-owned station's lineup on "Chicago Nonstop" to include simulcasts of Don Wade & Roma's morning show and Roe Conn & Richard Roeper's afternoon show from the studios of Citadel Broadcasting news/talk WLS-AM (890). (Conn telegraphed "some very exciting things on the horizon" in an interview here Tuesday.) Details are still being worked out, but if all goes as planned, the cameras could be trained on the WLS drive-time personalities by Oct. 25 -- just eight days before the Nov. 2 election.
It might not have been the best omen in the world that Kate Sullivan's long-awaited debut as WBBM-Channel 2's newest news anchor at 5 p.m. Monday was preempted by a CBS broadcast of the U.S. Open. But there she was at 10 p.m. alongside Rob Johnson -- and the following night at 5 and 10 p.m. with Johnson and at 6 p.m. filling in for Bill Kurtis alongside Walter Jacobson. Sullivan is among the station's recent imports from WCBS-TV in New York, along with morning news anchor Steve Bartelstein and morning weathercaster Megan Glaros.
Dave Alpert, who began his career in Chicago as news director of the former WMET, was forced out this week after almost three decades with ABC News. He spent 17 years as producer and editor in New York and the last 10 years as a correspondent in Los Angeles -- mainly covering the entertainment beat for radio. (In between, he had a 19-month stint as executive producer for Westwood One.) "It is not my choice that I leave a group of people who I believe to be the best in the business,"Alpert told ABC colleagues in his farewell note Tuesday. "I'm told everything happens for a reason, and change is good."
Country music superstar and actress‚ Reba McEntire will appear as a presenter at the National Radio Hall of Fame induction ceremony Nov. 6 in Chicago. She'll induct country radio legend Ralph Emery. Also on hand will be Bob Edwards, a 2004 Radio Hall of Famer, who'll induct fellow National Public Radio veteran Carl Kasell. Other 2010 inductees include: Chicago radio icon Terri Hemmert; broadcast entrepreneur Cathy Hughes; the late radio station and record label owner Sam Phillips, and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir's "Music and the Spoken Word." The nationally broadcast event, hosted by syndicated talker Neal Boortz, will originate from the studios of WTTW-Channel 11, 5400 N. St. Louis. Tickets are $350.
George Castle, the veteran Chicago sports writer and host of the syndicated radio show "Diamond Gems," is awaiting the Oct. 5 release of his 10th‚ book, When the Game Changed: An Oral History of Baseball's True Golden Age: 1969-1979. Published by Lyons Press, it features the insights and recollections of Fergie Jenkins, Billy Williams, Gaylord Perry, Joe Morgan, Tony Perez, Bruce Sutter, Brooks Robinson, Orlando Cepeda, Tom Seaver, Phil Niekro, Jim Rice, Jim Palmer, Bert Blyleven, Tommy John, Lou Piniella, Fred Lynn, Luis Tiant, Earl Weaver and Sparky Anderson, among others.