Wisconsin Broadcasters Association

WUWM mourns passing of Bruce Winter

Posted On: November 15, 2018
Bruce Winter - Credit WUWM
Bruce Winter - Credit WUWM

A man who spent 40 years connected to WUWM in Milwaukee has died.

Bruce Winter was program director at WUWM. He started at the station in 1978 as operations manager. Over the years he hosted programs playing classical music, jazz, and adult alternative music.

An article on the WUWM website says Winter’s voice will remain on the air for years because of all the funding credits he recorded over the years.

Winter is survived by his wife and son. Funeral arrangements have not yet been announced.   ... Read More

WBA Foundation Chair: Foundation ‘well positioned’

Posted On: November 15, 2018

I am pleased to have the honor of serving as Chair of the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association Foundation (WBAF). Foundation President and CEO, Michelle Vetterkind, provides outstanding leadership for the WBAF. I am happy to report that your Foundation is well positioned to be a strong partner with the WBA during 2019.

Communication with the WBA membership and the WBA board remain consistent and effective through Foundation reports in the WBA newsletter and WBAF reports presented at WBA Board and Executive Committee meetings. As Foundation Chair, my attendance at these meetings provides an excellent opportunity for WBA board members to provide direct feedback and guidance regarding the Foundation’s core activities of fundraising,  ... Read More

Head of Morgan Murphy Media named ‘Giant’ in broadcasting

Posted On: November 14, 2018

The president and CEO of Madison-based Morgan Murphy Media has been named a 2018 Giants of Broadcasting & Electronic Arts honoree. 

Elizabeth Murphy Burns received the award Tuesday in New York from the Library of American Broadcasting Foundation.

“I’m deeply honored and humbled,” Burns said during event. “I love our industry and I think it’s vital to our world. I love the people, what we accomplished together, how we moved our industry forward keeping us all relevant and I wouldn’t have done one thing differently.”

Burns became the first woman to serve on the CBS affiliates board in 1981 and has been CEO of Morgan Murphy Media for 36 years.  ... Read More

Committee finishes work on police body camera bill

Posted On: November 13, 2018

 Courtesy WBA Newsroom

A Legislative Study Committee has completed work on a bill that would regulate the use of police body cameras in Wisconsin.
Legislation on body cameras passed in the Assembly but was not brought up for a vote in the Senate before the end of the last session. The study committee… – MORE –  ... Read More

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Educators say thank you for WBA Foundation grants

Posted On: November 13, 2018

The WBA Foundation is getting thank yous for it recent awarding of Educational Support Grants. Two letters are below:


Hello Michelle,

I hope all is well with you and the WBA!

I would like to sincerely thank you and the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association Foundation for the Educational Support Grant grant of $2,500 for the purchase of production equipment that will serve the needs of our Stage & Screen Arts students now and into the future!

As with many institutions of higher education, we are tasked with being as resourceful as humanly possible while providing the best education and experience for our students who we are preparing to become productive leaders.  ... Read More

WBA member stations win 22 Chicago/Midwest Regional Emmy Awards

Posted On: November 12, 2018
WKOW's Caroline Bach, Matt Cash, Nick Buffo and Ed Reams
WKOW's Caroline Bach, Matt Cash, Nick Buffo and Ed Reams

Seven different Wisconsin television stations won a total of 22 Emmy Awards during Saturday’s awards presentation by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.

The following Wisconsin stations won awards:

WKOW (1)
WGBA (1)
WITI (11)
WMTV (1)
Milwaukee PBS (1)
Wisconsin Public Television (4)

The list of Wisconsin winners is below. The full list of winners is available here.

Outstanding Achievement for News Programming – Evening Newscast: Smaller Markets (51+): WKOW

Outstanding Achievement for News Programming – Morning Newscast: Larger Markets (1-50): WISN

Outstanding Achievement for News Programming – Morning Newscast: Smaller Markets (51+): WGBA

Outstanding Achievement for News Gathering – Spot News: WISN

Outstanding Achievement for News Gathering – Investigative Series: WITI

Outstanding Achievement for News Gathering – Light News Feature/Series: Wisconsin Public Television

Outstanding Achievement for News Specialty Report/Series – Arts/Culture/Entertainment: Wisconsin Public Television

Outstanding Achievement for News Specialty Report/Series – Business/Consumer: WITI

Outstanding Achievement for News Specialty Report/Series – Crime: WITI

Outstanding Achievement for News Specialty Report/Series – Health/Science: WITI

Outstanding Achievement for News Specialty Report/Series – Human Interest: WITI

Outstanding Achievement for News Specialty Report/Series – Military: WMTV

Outstanding Achievement for News Specialty Report/Series – Religion: WITI

Outstanding Achievement for News Specialty Report/Series – Sports: Wisconsin Public Television

Outstanding Achievement for Public Affairs/Current Affairs Programming – Program/Special: WMVS,  ... Read More

Request-A-Thon triples money raised for the hungry

Posted On: November 12, 2018

A radio and TV station’s effort to team up to raise money for people struggling with hunger across Southern Wisconsin tripled last year’s effort.

The NBC15 (WMTV) Share Your Holidays campaign held a Request-A-Thon Thursday on 105.5 Triple M (WMMM-FM) and raised at least $12,500 for the Second Harvest Foodbank of Southern Wisconsin.

The amount will provide up to 37,500 meals.

From 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. 105.5 Triple M radio personalities Jonathan and Kitty helped raise donations. Listeners called to make a donation to play any song they requested. People were also able to request a song to be dropped for a donation.  ... Read More

Nominations open for Hall of Fame Award

Posted On: November 9, 2018

The Wisconsin Broadcasters Association Foundation Hall of Fame Committee is now requesting and accepting nominations for the Wisconsin Broadcasters Hall of Fame.  

The Hall of Fame nomination process is open and will run through Feb. 15, 2019. Submissions should be made on the official nomination form (enclosed) and sent to the WBA Foundation office. Selected nominees will be inducted on June 12, 2019, during the annual WBA Hall of Fame Dinner. The dinner will be held at the Osthoff Resort in Elkhart Lake in conjunction with the WBA Summer Conference.

The Wisconsin Broadcasters Hall of Fame was established in 1989 and formally dedicated by then FCC Chairman Alfred Sikes.  ... Read More

Langmyer forms company to invest in small markets

Posted On: November 9, 2018
Tom Langmyer
Tom Langmyer

Longtime media executive Tom Langmyer is starting a company looking to aquire local radio stations and digital platforms in small markets.

Langmyer annouced Thursday the formation of Great Lakes Media Corp., which looks to aquire properties in New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, Minnesota and Wisconsin. He is President and CEO of the company.

Great Lakes Media Corp.

“Smaller communities are making a big comeback. This new generation of people, to whom quality of life and community are very important, are building their lives and businesses in these places,” Langmyer said. “Over the years, the shifting economy and technology had ended an era of localism in media.  ... Read More

Morrissey recognized for dedication to WBA Newsroom

Posted On: November 1, 2018

Michelle Vetterkind

I hope everyone has been enjoying our beautiful (for the most part) Wisconsin fall weather.  As a life-long Wisconsinite (with the exception of a couple of years in Chicago), I must say fall is my favorite season…even if it means that the season that begins with a “W” will soon follow.

I would like to give an extra special recognition to someone who has worked tirelessly (albeit, behind the scenes) for your WBA to provide so many of you, our valued WBA members, with a wonderful service. Radio veteran and Wisconsin news enthusiast Tim Morrissey is handing off his responsibilities for WBA Newsroom after nine years of working for the site.

Tim Morrissey

Tim Morrissey

Tim was first hired in 2009 to write content for the Kidder Broadcast News Resource Center, which is now known as WBA Newsroom. Under his care, the site has grown into an important resource for practicing journalists and anyone interested in learning more about journalism’s role in the gathering and dissemination of information to the public.

The site features relevant and updated information about Wisconsin laws regarding news coverage, quick explanations of how our state’s court system works, pro tips on shooting video and writing, and even a link to a site where every place-name in Wisconsin is accurately pronounced. It was underwritten by a generous grant from veteran journalist and WBA Hall of Famer R. Perry Kidder.

Tim researched the information on the site and made sure it always had the most recent information.

He also grew the WBA Newsroom’s presence on Twitter where Wisconsin journalists gather to commiserate online. He promoted the site and engagement among journalists working in Wisconsin broadcasting.

As Tim is moving on to a more relaxing way of life, responsibilities for the site are now being transferred to the WBA team. It goes without saying that Tim is definitely responsible for making the site the valuable resource it is today.   

Tim – on behalf of the WBA Membership and the WBA Team, THANK YOU for all you’ve done for Wisconsin’s broadcast journalists!

WBA Foundation

I hope you had a chance to watch as your WBA Foundation continued our proud nearly 30 year tradition of hosting statewide debates for all general election races for all U.S. Senate and gubernatorial races. This year we brought statewide attention to two key races: The U.S. Senate debate was on Oct. 13 in the Wausau/Rhinelander market and our gubernatorial debate was on Oct. 19 in the Madison market.

The WBA Foundation thanks our long-time debate sponsor, WAICU, and everyone in the host markets who worked so hard to make these debates a success.

It’s been interesting to look back at my notes from when both boards asked us in early 2013 to come up with a new WBA Debate Plan, with a goal of being more inclusive of our membership by encouraging a more market-based approach. From the formation of the Debate Committee (with recommendations coming from both boards) to the re-evaluating and refining throughout a 6-month period with the final plan being passed at the Joint Board Meeting in 2014, it’s been a wonderfully rewarding experience to see the final plan put into action. Four years later, we’ve held debates in all five markets.

I think the best part (for me) has been watching how well our markets have worked together…competitors who come together, willingly, respectfully, and gracefully for a common cause and to bring our WBA Foundation mission to light…to better educate and serve the public and to promote the civic and political process. I’m also inspired by the outpouring of support and encouragement from our entire membership. 

I hope you’ll agree that while there’s always room for improvement, overall, this is a footprint your WBA, your WBA Foundation, and YOU, our valued members, can be proud of.

(oh….and….if you haven’t had a chance to watch them yet, they’re on our museum site: wisconsinbroadcastingmuseum.org)

Broadcasters Clinic

And last, but certainly not least…

Make sure to take a look at the recap of this year’s amazing, award-winning (many times over) Broadcasters Clinic! It’s hard to believe but the Clinic Committee, under the leadership of Kent Aschenbrenner (and of course, our own Linda Baun who puts many of her own special touches on the entire 3-day event) put together an event that topped last year’s Clinic. Yes, our nationally-recognized Clinic becomes more popular every year! PLEASE make a note to send your engineer next year (and GM’s, we’d love to have you join us on the impressive exhibit floor; a perfect opportunity for you and your engineer). It’s often said that our Broadcasters Clinic is the best event of its kind in the country, drawing in attendees from an average of 20 states per year. And, lucky you, Wisconsin broadcasters…it’s right in your own backyard.

We’d love to see you there!  Mark your calendars for Oct. 15-17, 2019 at the Madison Marriott West.

Remember to vote on Nov. 6 (if not before)

It’s hard to believe that Thanksgiving is only a few weeks away.

On a personal note, I know I am most thankful to be able to work with your WBA Team, Linda, Liz, and Kyle. I’m also truly thankful to work with you, our wonderfully active, engaged, and supportive membership!

Thank you, as always, for your time and support. I hope you all have a safe & blessed Holiday Season!

Chair’s Column: For The Birds

Posted On: October 31, 2018

Have you ever seen those huge flocks of starlings flying in formation, changing directions in the blink of an eye? They look like giant clouds of birds moving in the same general direction before they inexplicably change course. According to Smithsonian Magazine, hundreds of starlings can change direction in half a second.

I saw one of these “starling clouds” the other day on my way to WTMJ and it got me thinking about our industry, our state association, and the businesses we are responsible for. I came away with three takeaways:

No. 1: A few birds make all the difference. Smithsonian Magazine actually captured these birds on video then slowed the footage down to better understand what was really going on. It turns out that a small group of birds decide, in a nano-second, that it’s time to change direction, and the entire flock follows suit. These “lead birds” have no fancy titles or formal leadership roles. Apparently, they sense opportunity (favorable wind drafts, insects for meals, e.g.) and decide it’s time to change. In our state association, our industry, or in your TV or radio stations, is there a small, influential group of people who see opportunity and can change where you’re going?

No. 2: Speed wins. It’s mind-blowing how quickly the birds change direction. They don’t stop down for analysis, committee meetings or data dumps. Once they see an opportunity, they act. Are we built for speed, or are we bogged down in process and bureaucracy?

No. 3: It’s simultaneously a team sport and an individual sport. In slow-motion video, you can see that each starling is acting quite individually; that is, they are not all doing the same thing. So, while they are free to act pretty much on their own, to succeed they have to generally all go in the same direction. What a production!

The next time you see one of those big clouds of darting, speeding starlings, ask yourself if your organization behaves like those winged creatures. Are you built for speed, full of influential team members (regardless of title), who can seize new opportunities? Do we encourage wild individualism even as we ask everyone to go the same direction?

It seems likely that our business, our industry and even our own state association could learn a thing or two from these seemingly simple but complex clouds of inspiring starlings.

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