Longtime 760 WJR morning man Paul W. Smith is moving to a newly created timeslot on the venerable Detroit news/talk station.
Beginning Tuesday, June 20th, Smith will be heard in the Noon-2:00 PM timeslot previously occupied by The Dan Bongino Show. Focus with Paul W. Smith will “expand the community’s access to Mihcigan’s most influential political, civic, and business newsmakers”, according to a press release.
Guy Gordon will move mornings from his current early afternoon window, hosting a newly branded JR Morning show from 6:00-9:00 AM. All Talk with Tom Jordan and Kevin Dietz remains in the 9:00 AM-Noon timeslot. The station will also launch a new afternoon show, JR Afternoon, hosted by Chris Renwick from 2:00-4:00 PM. The Mitch Albom Show will continue to be heard from 4:00-6:00 PM.
“What a lineup! Each of our talent is a brand unto themself and have a unique vision and take on the events that shape the news,” said 760 WJR Program Director Mike Wheeler. “We are absolutely living up to our claim that WJR is where Michigan comes to talk.”
Smith has been the host of the station’s morning show since 1996, after stepping in for predecessor and radio legend JP McCarthy. The change allows both he and the station more flexibility.
“Launching the Focus show will give Paul W. Smith the opportunity to expand, on and off the air, his unmatched relationships with Michigan’s most influential newsmakers, for the benefit of our audience and our advertising partners,” Cumulus Detroit Vice President and Market Manager Steve Finateri said. “WJR is The Great Voice of the Great Lakes and going 100% local is a big win for all Michiganders who count on WJR to inform and educate us about everything happening here in our state!”
WDAY Host Jeff Left Retires After 50 Years
Left worked in New York City, Portsmouth, Columbus, Philadelphia, and Fargo.
WDAY host Jeff Left is saying goodbye to radio as he’s retiring after 50 years in the industry across the country. Left began his career in Cleveland, Ohio, when he was 17 years old, and his first on-air opportunity was reading traffic reports to listeners.
“I wasn’t afraid or nothing. ‘I-35 backed up 10 minutes’, and I’m just reading it,” Left said about doing his first live-reads. “I said to myself, ‘Is this it? This is fun!”
Those live-reads led to Left traveling the country and working at various stations throughout his 50-year career. He worked in New York City, Portsmouth, Columbus, Philadelphia, and Fargo.
Eventually, he returned to WDAY for a second time, working in sales, production, and as an on-air personality alongside Bonnie & Friends.
“I’m lucky enough to have 27 advertising awards, I’ve been published 23 times nationally…” Left said. “…I thought it was time, and so that is why I decided to retire.”
Beginning Monday, October 2, Jace Denman will join Bonnie & Friends as Bonnie’s new co-host.
KQED Promotes Ernesto Aguilar to Executive Role
Since joining the radio station in 2021, Aguilar has been Director of Radio Programming.
News/talk KQED in San Francisco is promoting Ernesto Aguilar to Executive Director of Radio Programming and Content DEI. Since joining the radio station in 2021, Aguilar has been Director of Radio Programming.
Aguilar reacted to his promotion on X, formerly Twitter, and shed light on details of what the new role that he’s taking over will consist of.
“Happy to share that my role at @KQED is growing,” Aguilar wrote. “I’m now Executive Director of Radio Programming and Content DEI. In addition to the exciting broadcasts we do, I’ll also now oversee diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives in the Content division.
“I’ll work closely with our Chief DEI Officer and teams to ensure our internal culture and our programming authentically serves the diverse Bay Area community we cherish. I’ll also be implementing annual Content DEI plans.”
Before joining KQED and heading to the Bay Area, Aguilar was Executive Director of the National Federation of Community Broadcasters and worked in Houston’s public radio scene. Furthermore, he thanked his boss, Holly Kernan, for entrusting him with the new role.
“Sincere thanks to @KQEDKernan, my boss, for her dedication and leadership on diversity issues,” Aguilar added. “Her support for devoting resources within Content is invaluable and a step I hope other organizations learn from.
Chris Hayes Taking Podcast on Road with Live Tour
Joy Reid will join Hayes while the tour is in Philadelphia. Meanwhile, Rachel Maddow is the guest for the New York stop.
MSNBC’s Chris Hayes is taking his Why Is This Happening? podcast on tour, as he’ll be hosting three live shows in Chicago, Philadelphia, and New York. Hayes has already made a stop in Austin, but the bulk of the tour is getting underway.
Hayes’ tour this fall will begin on Oct. 9 in Chicago, then head to Philadelphia on Oct. 16, and conclude in New York on Nov. 12. Furthermore, the MSNBC host won’t be alone, as he’ll guest, including some from his network.
Joy Reid will join Hayes while the tour is in Philadelphia; meanwhile, Rachel Maddow is the guest for the New York stop.
The All In host was recently in the news after it was announced that Inside with Jen Psaki will take over the Monday 8 p.m. time slot of Hayes’ show, with the change beginning on Sept. 25.
Nonetheless, Hayes will still anchor his show Tuesday through Friday, and Psaki will continue in her Sunday time slot at noon.