Wisconsin Broadcasters Association

Rebecca Ryan to speak at 2019 Broadcast Management Institute

Posted On: September 21, 2018
Rebecca Ryan
Rebecca Ryan

Futurist and economist Rebecca Ryan will speak to students at the Walker Broadcast Management Institute on April 3, 2019.

Ryan is the Resident Futurist at the Alliance for Innovation, a Senior Advisor at the Governing Institute, a faculty member at the Institute for Zen Leadership, the founder of Futurist Camp, the inventor of Futures Labs,
and the owner of NEXT Generation Consulting, Inc. She is the author of The Next Big Things: The Future of Local Government (2015), ReGENERATION: A Manifesto for America’s Future Leaders (2013), and Live First, Work Second: Getting Inside the Head of the Next Generation (2007).  ... Read More

$129,000 raised during Madison telethon

Posted On: September 21, 2018

A Madison television station raised nearly $130,000 for victims of flooding in South Central Wisconsin during a telethon with the Wisconsin Chapter of the American Red Cross.

WKOW-TV encouraged viewers to donate money during the Sept. 6 broadcast. The effort brought in $129,381 for flood relief.

“This disaster hit us hard here at home, but our viewers and community organizations still stepped up to help their neighbors,” WKOW News Director Ed Reams said. “We cannot thank them enough for their generosity.”  ... Read More

Broadcasters team up for Hurricane Florence victims

Posted On: September 20, 2018
Hannah from 95.7 BIG FM; Scott from FM106.1; Rahny Taylor from 97-3NOW and Ridder from FM106.1
Hannah from 95.7 BIG FM; Scott from FM106.1; Rahny Taylor from 97-3NOW and Ridder from FM106.1

iHeartMedia Milwaukee and Fox 6 (WITI) in Milwaukee teamed up to raise $84,130 for victims of Hurricane Florence.

The radio and TV pair was also working with Clear Channel Outdoor Americas.

On-air personalities from iHeartMedia Milwaukee’s News/Talk 1130 WISN, FM106.1, 95.7 BIG FM, The Big 920, 97-3 NOW and V100.7 including Ridder, Scott and Quinn from FM106.1; Hannah from 95.7 BIG FM; Rahny Taylor from 97-3 NOW and Bailey Coleman, Reggie Brown and Promise from V100.7 staffed a phone bank and processed donations.  The stations supported the event on-air, on the stations’ websites, and through its social media channels encouraging listeners to donate to families affected by Hurricane Florence.  ... Read More

Tools available to help stations facing repack

Posted On: September 20, 2018

By Alvimann on Morguefile

Numerous tools are available to help the 28 television stations in Wisconsin that are part of the repack stemming from the broadcast spectrum incentive auction.

The National Association of Broadcasters has built a website with resources for station as well as information for the audience to explain how the changes affect them.


For the audience:

–No new equipment is needed
–Over-the-air viewers will have to rescan their channels after a station changes frequencies
–The frequency change does not mean stations will be changing channels. All stations will remain on the same channels as they currently appear on your TV


Stations will have to communicate to viewers when the frequency change is happening so they know when they will have to rescan their television channels.  ... Read More

Get the WBA member app for Broadcasters Clinic

Posted On: September 19, 2018

The Wisconsin Broadcasters Association app is updated and ready to help visitors to the WBA Broadcasters Clinic at the Madison Marriott West from Oct 16-18.

The app is available in the Apple App Store and Google Play. It’s also available on iPad.

Features added for the WBA Broadcasters Clinic include:

–Map of the exhibitor floor
–Push alerts to remind you of the events as they happen
–Information on sessions and speakers

Even if you’re not coming to the conference, members will want the app for the following features:

–Push alerts for timely WBA headlines and information
–Calendar of WBA events
–Instructional videos from Jacobs Media Digital Dot Connector Seth Resler
–A directory of stations and members
–A feed of all recent job postings
–Photos from recent WBA happenings


The app is only for members and event attendees.  ... Read More

Milwaukee station hosts fundraiser for hurricane victims

Posted On: September 19, 2018
Stations step up to help hurricane victims - WISN

A Milwaukee TV station hosted a phone bank Tuesday to raise money for the victims of Hurricane Florence.

WISN-TV teamed up with the American Red Cross of Wisconsin and raised $90,757 from viewers throughout southeastern Wisconsin. The money will support hurricane victims in North Carolina, South Carolina, and other neighboring states.

“Our hearts go out to everyone impacted by Hurricane Florence. We’re all overcome with sadness to see the destruction that this has caused, yet deeply moved by the kindness displayed by our viewers,” Jan Wade, president and general manager of WISN 12 said. “As the storms pass and the rebuilding begins,  ... Read More

Wisconsin FOIC celebrates 40 years

Posted On: September 18, 2018

 Courtesy WBA Newsroom

The Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council is celebrating 40 years of advocating for openness in government.
A celebration is scheduled for 3 p.m. on Oct. 30 at the Assembly Parlor in the Wisconsin State Capitol. The event will feature speakers and the unveiling of open government artwork and the Wisconsin… – MORE –  ... Read More

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Student radio station transmitter marks 45 years

Posted On: September 17, 2018

The UW-Oshkosh student run radio station is marking 45 years on the air with the same transmitter.

WRST-FM went on the air on Sept 17, 1973 with a Gates-brand FM transmitter. The transmitter is the oldest of all the radio and TV transmitters licensed to the UW Board of Regents. It has operated for more than 300,000 hours.

Since it was turned off briefly to replace a component in August 2013, it has been off for only eight hours. Six hours of that total was for upgrades to its logging interface and during tower maintenance, which requires the unit to be shut down for safety reasons.  ... Read More

‘Radio Marketing Professional’ certification seminar dates announced

Posted On: September 17, 2018

Ken Beno

The Wisconsin Broadcasters Association Foundation (WBAF) is offering a new round of broadcast marketing seminars to Wisconsin college students.

The WBA Foundation has pledged its financial support so that a student can take advantage of the Radio Advertising Bureau’s (RAB) Certification program to become a Radio Marketing Professional (RMP). The highly regarded RMP certification seminar is presented in a two day format.

WBA Education Committee Chair Ken Beno is the seminar instructor.

Upcoming seminar dates are:


Thursday, Oct. 11 –  5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. and Tuesday, Oct. 16 – 5:30 p.m.  ... Read More

Debates, Broadcasters Clinic are a few of the many ways the WBA Serves You

Posted On: September 6, 2018

Michelle Vetterkind

Is your station among the list of stations that participate in the WBA’s NCSA/PEP program?

The WBA’s NCSA/PEP program is what allows your WBA to provide you with the majority of the many services/offerings we do. 

To help provide you with an idea as to how reliant the WBA (like all State Broadcasters Associations) are on NCSA/PEP income, this graph shows the relative contribution of NCSA/PEP income to the overall WBA revenue budget for an average year.

If you run NSCA/PEP (and the majority of do, by far, are) – THANK YOU! If you are not on the list, I strongly urge you to take part in this important partnership. If you have any questions as to how the program works, please feel free to me directly at mvetterkind@wi-broadcasters.org or give me a call at 800-236-1922. I’d love to talk to you!


To highlight a couple of our upcoming events – October will be a VERY busy month for your WBA/WBA Foundation!

In keeping with our time-honored tradition for the last 30 years, your WBA Foundation will be hosting debates this fall for the Wisconsin Governor and U.S. Senate races. Our gubernatorial debate will take place on Friday, Oct. 5 in the Madison market and our U.S. Senate debate will take place Saturday, Oct. 13 in the Wausau/Rhinelander market.  This continues the well-received practice your WBA Foundation implemented six years ago of using a market-based approach to hosting debates.

Both debates will be offered statewide to Wisconsin television/radio stations for live broadcast. Your WBA Foundation is honored to provide these important debates to Wisconsin’s voters as part of our 30-year history of using these debates to promote the civic and political process. We greatly appreciate your support in airing the debates. 

Broadcasters Clinic (Oct.  16 – 18 at the Madison Marriott)

You won’t want to miss this award-winning, three-day regional event that last year drew attendees from 24 states. I’d like to congratulate our own Linda Baun, Kent Aschenbrenner, and the entire Clinic Committee for again being recognized by the National Society of Broadcasters Engineers for the BEST Regional Convention!  Certainly well-deserved!

The Clinic will offer a Personal Safety in Today’s Broadcasting Environment session. This panel discussion moderated by Juli Buehler, WLUK TV News Director, will offer attendees insights from Dan Shelley, RTDNA, Executive Director; Tom Allen, Quincy Media Regional Vice President; David Oxenford, Wilkinson Barker Knauer, LLP; Madison Police Chief Mike Koval; and David Devereaux-Weber, WORT Board President.

Make sure to send your engineers. And managers, come join us for the exhibits or to check out sessions. We’d LOVE to have you there!  You will NOT be disappointed.

To register contact Linda Baun at lbaun@wi-broadcasters .org.

You can register here.


I recently had the pleasure of having lunch with WBA Hall of Famer Tom Bolger and Norm Lorenz. Both were instrumental in the creation of our Rick Jowett Fellowship. Rick’s grandfather was CEO of Forward Communications, which owned several stations throughout the country, including WMTV in Madison.

Tom and Norm

Tom was President and General Manager of WMTV from 1963-1980, Forward’s Chief Operating Officer, 1980-84, and Chief Executive, 1984-85. He was Joint Board Chairman of the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) in 1979-81 and President (before the official term became “Chair”) of the WBA in 1983-84. Norm began his career with WMTV back in 1977 and over the next 38 years he helped write, produce, and create much of the content that was broadcast on WMTV’s airwaves. Rick worked with Tom and Norm at WMTV and was close with both of their families. Rick started at WMTV as a photographer. A special thank you to Tom and Norm for their vision and support of the Fellowship in memory of our friend Rick. 


Until the next issue of your Wisconsin Broadcaster, don’t forget to enjoy the pleasures our beautiful Wisconsin fall season has to offer. 

And….of course…..thank you – as always – for your time and support!

Be ‘on guard’ against threats to media freedoms

Posted On: August 29, 2018

A few years ago, and ironically just days before Independence Day, some members of our state legislature tried to quietly dismantle Wisconsin’s open records laws, hoping to restrict the public’s access to the inner workings of our elected officials — our government. Fortunately, broadcasters and other news media made enough noise on the air, online, and in print over the 4th of July holiday to create public pressure to turn back this effort. One state legislator to whom I spoke with at that time told me he “didn’t fully realize what this was,” and that he would reverse course now that he understood the importance of the issue. The explanations from some of our officials were lame and in some cases even dishonest. In short, if it weren’t for the vigilance of our local media, the public’s right to know, and our important role in shining the light of inspection on our government, would have been sharply curtailed.

Today, there is no ambiguity in the rhetoric from some corners of the political landscape. Regardless of your political leanings, the idea that the press is “the enemy of the people” or that “truth isn’t truth” should create a sense of urgency and heighten vigilance in all of us.

Beyond our role as journalists and advocates of the First Amendment, I hope we all remain vigilant during these turbulent political times. Whether you are at the assignment desk in a TV newsroom in Rhinelander, an account executive in Wausau, a disc jockey in Shawano, or a news anchor in Madison, the not-so-subtle efforts to limit the constitutionally guaranteed people’s right to know should concern us.

As I’ve had the opportunity to lobby on our state association’s behalf over the years at the local, state, and national level, I’ve come to realize that many of our elected officials truly do understand and respect the important role we play in a free, American society. Unfortunately, I’ve also seen arrogance and disregard for the work we do for our communities.

I hope we’ll stay “on guard” and be ready to shine the bright light of truth whenever we hear from those who, for political gain or other nefarious intent, wish to curtail one of our most fundamental freedoms.

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