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The News nominated for Pacemaker

Posted on 30 December 2016 by jmcjournal


The Murray State News was recognized at the ACP conference as a nominee for the Pacemaker Award. Representing The News at the conference was Stephanie Elder, adviser; Ashley Traylor, staff writer; Gisselle Hernandez, features editor; and Connor Jaschen, editor in chief.


The Murray State News was recognized in October as one of the top collegiate newspapers in the country.

The News was named one of 30 finalists for the coveted Pacemaker award from the Associated Collegiate Press (ACP). ACP gives the award out to four categories of publications: online, newspaper, yearbook and magazine. Teams of professionals judge the entries based on coverage and content, quality of writing and reporting, leadership, design, photography and graphics, according to the ACP website.

This is not the first time the student publication has been recognized for this top honor. The Murray State News won the Pacemaker award in 2004 and was last nominated in 2006.

The work of the 2015-16 staff of The Murray State News puts the newspaper in the top 1 percent in the United States, according to the Associated Collegiate Press.

Connor Jaschen, editor-in-chief, Gisselle Hernandez, features editor, Ashley Traylor, staff writer, and Stephanie Elder Anderson, faculty adviser, represented Murray State at the ACP national conference in Washington in October to accept the finalist award.

The News representatives attended dozens of sessions at the conference as well as toured the White House and the Newseum.

They also had the opportunity to hear speakers such as Donna Brazile, Democratic National Committee interim chairwoman, Bob Woodward, one of the two journalists responsible for breaking the Watergate scandal, and Edward Snowden, the former intelligence officer who revealed in 2013 that the NSA was seizing private records of billions of U.S. citizens.

Stephanie Elder Anderson met Bob Woodward at the ACP national conference.


Jaschen, Traylor and Hernandez toured the White House as part of the conference events


After listening to Washington Post journalist, Bob Woodward speak, Elder Anderson was honored to meet the award-winning author and have him sign her copy of All the President’s Men, a book she uses to teach investigative journalism in her courses.

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Department welcomes high school students to campus

Posted on 30 December 2016 by jmcjournal


Area high school students interested in mass communications came to campus on Sept. 23 for a morning of training in the department’s annual High School Student Media Workshop. A variety of learning sessions was provided for students interested in journalism, yearbooks, advertising or videography. One session focused on collect video footage on campus and using it for a mock TV show.


The department’s annual High School Student Media Workshop attracted more than 340 students from 12 area high schools.

Schools attending this year’s workshop were: Ballard County, Caldwell County, Calloway County, Crittenden County, Fort Campbell, Graves County, Mayfield, McCracken County, Murray, Paducah Tilghman, St. Mary, and Trigg County.

The Sept. 23 workshop began with greetings from Dr. Tim Todd, dean, Arthur J Bauernfeind College of Business, and Dr. Debbie Owens, interim chair, Dept. of Journalism and Mass Communications.

Workshop director Leigh Wright announced the winners in the student media contest. Click here to watch the contest winner announcement which was played as part of the Workshop’s opening assembly.

The workshop was divided into three sessions with a variety of options for each session. Students and teachers were able to attend classes on advertising design and writing, feature writing and interviewing, writing effective headlines, sports still photography, latest trends in memory books, getting started with writing, InDesign basics, video field production, lighting, sports media production, on-camera interviewing and presentation, TV studio production, advertising sales, careers in the media, sports writing and reporting, social media, getting started with WordPress, finding story ideas, evaluating news sources for stories, looking good in print, writing on a deadline, broadcast announcing, writing effective news leads for print, broadcast & online, and a session for advisers.

JMC faculty and staff teaching in the workshop included: Gill Welsch, Dr. Robert H. McGaughey III, Dr. Melony Shemberger, Gross Magee, Brent Norsworthy, Dr. Kevin Qualls, Stephanie Elder Anderson, Chris Haynes, Dr. Debbie Owens, Elizabeth Thomas, and Orville Herndon.

Andrew Buehler and the Jostens staff presented three classes on yearbook trends. Jeremy McKeel and the Digital Media Services team presented several TV classes. Several JMC students hosted classes related to writing.

The 2017 workshop is scheduled for Sept. 22.

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McGaughey named Volunteer of the Year

Posted on 30 December 2016 by jmcjournal


Dr. Bob McGaughey, retired professor and chairman of the Department of Journalism and Mass Communications, was named one of 20 Volunteers of the Year (2015-16) at the national Pi Kappa Alpha convention Aug. 6 in New Orleans. Seated is Dr. Bob McGaughey, Pike and Murray State alumni from left, Bobby Workman, Bobby Martin, Buford Anderson, George Oakley, Dan Miller, Jerry Penner and John Weatherly.


Dr. Bob McGaughey, retired chairman and professor of the Department of Journalism and Mass Communications, was named one of 20 Volunteers of the Year (2015-16) at the national Pi Kappa Alpha convention Aug. 6 in New Orleans.

Nominated by the MSU Pike chapter adviser and the Murray-Calloway County Hospital CEO, Jerry Penner, McGaughey was the only fraternity alumnus from Kentucky named to the list.

The fraternity headquarters noted that this was the first year for the award. It recognizes “those alumni volunteers who serve in advisory board roles mentoring chapter leadership and members in ethical decision making, chapter operations, risk management, and strategic planning.”

McGaughey, a member of the “Fabulous Forty” pledge class of spring of 1962, has served on the alumni advisory board, on the house corporation and on the committee to raise funds and build the house on 16th street. The new house, built after the Pike Lodge north of campus burned in 2004, is named for the late Dr. Hal Houston.

In addition, McGaughey has helped sponsor Rush activities and been a major donor for building the current Pike house. He also has spoken to the Epsilon Lambda chapter on its history, communications, public relations and the roles of officers.

In 1977 he was named as second person to be the Pi Kappa Alpha Distinguished Alumnus. The first one was Dr. Houston.

McGaughey joined the MSU faculty in 1969 as the adviser to The Murray State News and journalism instructor. He became department chairman in 1974.

He retired in 1997 after 27 years and 23 as chairman. He then taught part time and worked with the BIS program in MSU’s Continuing Education unit until December 2010.

McGaughey has received several awards/honors for his work at Murray State. He won the Max Carman Outstanding Teacher of the Year in 1984 and was named the Distinguished Professor by the Alumni Association in 1990. In 2015 he received the Golden Horseshoe Award for continued outstanding service and support of the university.

Selected eight times to attend the International Radio and Television Society (IRTS) faculty-industry seminar in New York City, he was named the Frank Stanton Fellow as the distinguished broadcast educator in the U. S. by IRTS in 1987.

His other honors include being named to “Personalities of the South,” “International Men of the Year,” “Who’s Who in America,” “Who’s Who in the South and Southwest,” “Who’s Who Among American Teachers,” “Who’s Who in the Media and Communications,” “Who’s Who Registry of Business Leaders” and “Men of Achievement.” In 2012 he was inducted into the Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame.

McGaughey may be best known for his presentations with his close friend, Bob Valentine. The two have done communications workshops/speeches and their comedy act of Dr. Trey and Dr. Vee since 1978.

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New chair makes department history

Posted on 30 December 2016 by jmcjournal


Dr. Debbie Owens, interim chair, Department of Journalism and Mass Communications, greets students attending the department’s annual High School Student Media Workshop Sept. 23. Owens began her duties as chair in July.


by Mikayla Marshall
The Murray State News

Associate Professor Debbie Owens is the second woman and first African-American to serve as chairwoman for the department of journalism and mass communication.

“The JMC department has wonderful faculty,” said Gerry Muuka, assistant dean of the Arthur J. Bauernfeind College of Business. “Faculty that do their work, who look out for each other, and so when the occasion arose for me to make a decision, it wasn’t easy.”

He said ultimately it came down to Owens because of her time here at Murray State and her experience with the campus and the students.

Owens joined the faculty at Murray State in Fall 2002. She has held several positions, including intern coordinator and mass communications graduate program coordinator.

“I appreciate receiving a strong vote of confidence and getting support from my colleagues at Murray State,” Owens said.

She said this appointment to the position represents an extension of her duties and service to Murray State. She is the first African-American woman to take this position but said this fact has not hit her yet.

“Yeah, I am the first; I haven’t really thought about that,” Owens said.

She said that going from teaching at a historically-black college to a predominately-white college is always eye-opening. In her years at Murray State, she could list the non-white professors in the JMC department on one hand. She said diversity is something she is always working toward and she anticipates that in the coming years more non-white individuals will have more of a presence.

Owens started her teaching career at Redirection High School in Brooklyn, New York. She has served as a lecturer and professor at universities across the country for many years. She has received several awards, including the Cambridge Who’s Who Among Executives and Professionals in 2006-07 and the Distinguished Service Award at Murray in 2007. The Roundabout Murray Newsletter honored her in the Provost Faculty Spotlight in 2014.

For improving the department further, Owens said that recruitment and retention of students have always been areas of concern for anyone working in higher education. She said she wants to maintain high standards and attract talented individuals who are eager to learn and prepare for exciting careers in our ever-changing industry.

Bob Lochte, Owens’ predecessor, said he hopes for the same goals as the department moves forward.

“An area I expect to address is the growth of internship opportunities for JMC students,” Owens said. “I look forward to working with capable graduates, on-campus agencies and their respective associates as they continue to support our efforts.”

Muuka said Lochte was an amazing chairman and has done much for the department. He said he hopes to see the JMC department continue to have quality programs and faculty even in this time of budgetary crisis.

Lochte retired at the end of the Spring 2016 term, 28 years after joining Murray State’s faculty in 1988. He said he’s excited to see where the department goes.

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Dept. chair bids farewell

Posted on 30 December 2016 by jmcjournal


Dr. Tim Todd, dean, Arthur J Bauernfeind College of Business, shares his memories with the crowd in attendance at Dr. Bob Lochte’s retirement reception on May 4. Lochte finished his 28 year career with Murray State in June.


Dr. Bob Lochte, Journalism and Mass Communications Department Chair at Murray State University, will retire following the conclusion of the Spring 2016 semester.

Lochte graduated from Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine with a degree in English literature and a minor in Latin and Greek classics. While in high school, he worked at a radio station in Nashville, Tennessee where he was in charge of the remote transmitter that helped to broadcast church services on Sunday mornings, “[It was] probably one of the worst jobs at one of the coolest radio stations in town,” said Lochte.  He then spent the next 22 years working between both commercial and non-commercial radio and television before coming to Murray State. During this time he held program director and general manager positions.

At Murray State, Lochte has held a number of titles over his 28 years as a faculty member from assistant professor to graduate coordinator before stepping into his final position as department chair.

In a world that is constantly and quickly changing with regards to how we interact with each other, Lochte sees many challenges as well as a great deal of potential for the art of communication.

“You have to constantly revise what’s in these classes to try and be as contemporary as possible, so that’s more work to accommodate. But what’s interesting to me is not so much the technology as the things that don’t change. You’re delivering television shows, but if the content isn’t a hit, it doesn’t matter how good the technology is,” said Lochte.

“We’re in a chaotic and disruptive business environment driven by the audience and our goal has always been to give the audience what it wants. Professionals today have to figure out who this audience is, what they want, and how we deliver that. I think that’s probably the biggest challenge and will continue to be for several years to come.”

At a University where the faculty are famously student-driven, Lochte is no exception. His time as a student advisor has been appreciated by past as well as present students on campus.

“I felt so fortunate to have Dr. Lochte as an advisor. He really cares about his advisees and it was evident by his prompt communication and good advice. I always felt like if I had any questions about scheduling or needed guidance on a particular issue, I could count on him,” said Alissa Sommerfeldt, a junior public relations major.

“Students are the reason we’re all here. It’s a constant challenge to create a valuable learning experience for the students and I think that’s what I really like about the job,” said Lochte. “I think that our department has always been focused on the performance-based learning that higher education is now leaning toward across the country. We’ve always been very conscious that when our students graduate, they need to know how to do something, and if they don’t know how to do it, they need to know how to figure it out.”

Lochte doesn’t like the term “retirement,” but is very ready for the “next stage” in his life. He believes that it will be a time for self-discovery, and intends to enjoy the hobbies he’s developed over past years as well as continue his weekly radio show the Eisenhower Hour® on WKMS-FM. The program can also be streamed worldwide at wkms.org.

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Dept. hosts annual High School Workshop

Posted on 13 January 2016 by jmcjournal

The annual Journalism and Mass Communications High School Media Workshop drew nearly 300 students and advisers to campus in September.

Dr. Kevin Qualls talked about studio lighting as part of the High School Workshop’s broadcasting track.


The students and advisers came from 12 regional high schools. They were Calloway County, Graves County, Fort Campbell, St. Mary’s, Trigg County, Mayfield, Murray, McCracken County, Paducah Tilghman, Crittenden County and Meridian (III.).

Dr. Tim Todd, interim provost, and Gina Winchester, director of Regional Outreach, welcomed the students and advisors to the Curris Center before they participated in sessions conducted by MSU faculty/staff and regional media professionals.

The sessions covered yearbook design and production, advertising design, feature writing and interviewing, writing effective headlines, sports still photography, website design and set up, TV field production, lighting, sports media production, advertising sales, business journalism, careers in the media, sports writing and reporting, social media, evaluating news sources for stories, newspaper design, writing columns and editorials, on-camera interviewing and presentation, TV studio production and a special session for advisers conducted by workshop director, Leigh Wright.

Angela St. Clair, Herff Jones, conducted sessions on yearbook marketing.


In the high school yearbook competition, McCracken County High School won 10 awards and took first place for Best Overall Yearbook. Peyton Baker served as editor and Sharon Northington as adviser.

Second Place overall went to Fort Campbell with three top individual awards. Pagan Martelli was the editor and Iris Loucks was the adviser for the yearbook.

Trigg County had four awards to take third place. Ashley Wells served as adviser. Caldwell County had four awards to earn honorable mention. The editor was Libby Griggs and the adviser was J.J. Griggs.

In the television and production contest, Calloway County won 14 total awards, including first place in news/feature package, sports package, news/feature program, sports program and digital short.

Graves County placed second with seven awards, including second place in sports package and digital short.

In the newspaper competition, the Calloway County Laker Review and the Paducah Tilghman Bell dominated the awards, with 31 and 16, respectively.

The Laker Review won first place in news writing, feature writing, personality profile, page one design, photography, columns, sports design, sports writing and advertising design.

The Tilghman Bell won first place in editorial and opinion page, illustrations and graphics, feature design, reviews and overall newspaper design.

The Murray High Black and Gold received three awards.

The annual one-day workshop is conducted by the Department of Journalism and Mass Communications and co-sponsored by the Arthur J. Baurenfeind College of Business, Murray State’s Office of Regional Outreach and the Murray State’s Office of Recruitment.

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Eight top students recognized at spring honors banquet

Posted on 13 January 2016 by jmcjournal

The top students in each of the programs in the Department of Journalism and Mass Communications were recognized at the annual JMC Honors Banquet April 9.

The outstanding seniors were Andrea Moore, advertising: Ashney Williams, graphics communication media; Lexy Gross, journalism; Sierra Underhill and Kiaya Young, public relations; and Halle Pinkham, television production.

Outstanding seniors recognized at the spring honors banquet included, from left: Halle Pinkham, TV production; Lexy Gross, journalism; Sierra Underhill, public relations; Andrea Moore, advertising; and Kiaya Young, public relations. Not pictured: Ashney Williams, graphics communications media.


Moore had minors in art and in graphic communications technology. She was the social media marketing intern with MSU and graphic design intern with Interbrand New York.

A member of the Ads Club, she was inducted into Alpha Delta Sigma for her scholarship and professional activities. She was selected for this year’s Who’s Who in American Colleges and Universities.

She was also a part of the Racer Band, the Racer Pep Band, Sigma Alpha Iota and Campus Lights.

Williams had a successful internship with Letica Corporation in Fulton. She also worked as a patient care coordinator with Rotech Healthcare and as a student worker with the Murray State Career Services office.

She was a member of Delta Sigma Theta sorority and a volunteer for Needline and Habit for Humanity.

Gross, who also had a major in political science, served in several positions with The Murray State News, including editor in chief.

She had internships with the Lexington Herald Leader, the Nashville Tennessean and the Chicago Tribune. She was a correspondent for USA Today, Paducah Life magazine and the Murray Ledger & Times.

She was a Roy W. Howard National Reporting Competition Fellow, a Top 10 Student Leader at Murray State, the Outstanding Sigma Sigma Sigma member in the region and the recipient of the William Broughton Fellowship.

President of the MSU Panhellenic Council, she was selected to be in this year’s Who’s Who in American Colleges and Universities.

Underhill’s minor was in advertising. She was a member of the Ads Club, Sigma Sigma Sigma sorority and this year’s selection of Who’s Who in American Colleges and Universities.

She had two internships with Martin Williams Advertising in Minneapolis, one in project management and on in account management.

Young, a member of Public Relations Student Society of America, was an intern for the Four Rivers Carson Center in Paducah and a consulting photographer for VUE magazine.

She was president of the WKRR Junior League, a First-Year Leader and a member of Sigma Eta honor society.

Pinkham was also selected to Who’s Who in American Colleges and Universities.

She worked for MSU TV-11, was the OVC media correspondent and host for “This Week in Racer Athletics.”

A member of Public Relations Student Society of America, she was a writing intern for the MSU Print Media office and an intern for Project Transformation in Nashville.

As a member of the soccer team, she was on the OVC Commissioner’s Honor Roll for all three years and earned the Medal of Honor this year.

She was a member of Alpha Sigma Alpha sorority, Student Ambassadors, MSU Campus Outreach, MSU Student Alumni Association and the College of Business Ambassadors.

Kyle Smith and Allison Hilliard shared the award for the outstanding graduate student.

Dr. Debbie Owens, center, recognized the outstanding graduate students Allison Hilliard, left, and Kyle Smith, right, at the spring honors banquet.


Smith, a native of Mayfield, earned his master’s degree in the fall of 2014. While at Murray State, he served as treasurer of the Ads Club, worked in advertising and page design for The Murray State News and was a writer for MSU TV-11.

He currently owns and operates the Kyle Smith Design Company, serving west Kentucky and the region.

Hilliard, a graduate of Centre College from Hazel, also completed her master’s degree in the fall of 2014. She is the co-owner of the Hazel Antique Mall, coordinator of the Hazel Day Celebration, president of the Hazel Lions Club and a member of the board of directors of the South 641 Water District.

Nine students were inducted into Kappa Tau Alpha, the national honorary journalism fraternity. They were Benjamin Fincher, Shannon Hilkey, Paige Hoffmeister, Brieana Johnson, Kelley Kennedy, Benjamin Joseph Manhanke, Andrea Moore, Halle Pinkham and Kiaya Young.

Brieana Johnson, a television production major with a 3.97 grade-point average, was named Kappa Tau Alpha Top Scholar winner.

The top seniors were recognized at the University honors day program the day before graduation.

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McGaughey receives Golden Horseshoe award

Posted on 13 January 2016 by jmcjournal

Dr. Bob McGaughey, retired professor and chairman emeritus of the Department of Journalism and Mass Communications, received the Golden Horseshoe award Oct. 9 at the dinner for the Golden Anniversary of the graduating class of 1965.

Doc McGaughey visits with JMC alumni at Tent City during the Homecoming festivities each year. Pictured from left: Dr. Bob Jackson, Murray State Foundation president; Amanda Saunders, 2006 advertising alumna; and McGaughey.


MSU President Bob Davies presented the award on behalf of the MSU Alumni Association, citing McGaughey’s years of service and support of the University.

McGaughey, a member of the last graduating class of Murray State College, and Bob Valentine, senior instructor in the JMC department, were the speakers at the dinner.

McGaughey received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Murray State and his doctorate from Ohio University.

He joined the MSU faculty in 1969 as the adviser to The Murray State News and journalism instructor. He became department chairman in 1974.

He retired in 1997 after 27 years and 23 years as the chairman. He then taught part time and worked with the BIS program in MSU’s Continuing Education unit until December 2010.

McGaughey has received several awards/honors for his work at Murray State. He won the Max Carman Outstanding Teacher of Year in 1984 and was named the Distinguished Professor by the Alumni Association in 1990.

Selected eight times to attend the International Radio and Television Society (IRTS) faculty-industry seminar in New York City, he was named the Frank Stanton Fellow as the distinguished broadcast educator in the U.S. by the IRTS.

He was named Boss of the Year by the Murray chapter of the Professional Secretaries International in 1989, the Distinguished Organization Adviser by Omicron Delta Kappa in 1997 and as one of the Outstanding Teachers in America in 1996-97.

He received a special award from the Kentucky Press Association for service upon his retirement in 1997. He served two terms as the educational representative to the KPA board of directors and 10 years as executive director of the West Kentucky Press Association.

His other honors include being named to “Personalities of the South,” International Men of the Year,” “Who’s Who in America,” “Who’s Who in the South and Southwest,” “Who’s Who Among American Teachers,” “Who’s Who in the Media and Communications,” “Who’s Who Registry of Business Leaders,” and “Men of Achievement.” In 2012 he was inducted into the Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame.

An honor graduate of Murray State’s ROTC program, he served two years on active duty and 18 years with the 100th Army Reserve Division. He retired in 1985 with the rank of major. His nine ribbons and medals include the Meritorious Service Medal, the Air Medal and the Vietnamese Service Medal.

He may be best known for his work with fellow professor and close friend, Bob Valentine. The two have done workshops in communications, public relations and advertising and their two-man comedy act since 1978. McGaughey was named to “Who’s Who in American Entertainment in 1991 and 1995.

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Media professionals share insights with JMC seniors

Posted on 13 January 2016 by jmcjournal

JMC majors had the opportunity to learn from area media professionals during the department’s annual Meet the Pros event held on Oct. 8.

Students attended a panel discussion conducted by professionals working in areas related to their major.

Media professionals participating in October’s Meet the Pros included, front row (from left): Robert Norsworthy, Tab Brockman, Jamie Futrell, Kim Hamby, Dana Howard, Alichia Sawitoski, Miranda Ochsner, Mealand Ragland-Hudgins, back row (from left): Debbie Lee, Carrie Dillard, Lori Barrett, Jeremy McKeel, Dave Washburn, Denham Rogers, and Kristen Pace.


Following the panel discussion, students participated in a speed interviewing session with the visiting professionals.

Advertising majors were able to interact with Jamie Futrell, general manager, Bristol Broadcasting, Paducah; Miranda Ochsner, media planner, The Buntin Group, Nashville, Tenn.; Robert Norsworthy, executive in residence, Murray State University: Alichia Sawitoski, digital director, SMG Performance Marketing, Chicago; and Dave Washburn, vice president of operations, FLW Outdoors, Benton, Ky.

Graphic Communications Media majors met with Denham Rogers, advertising assistant, Hutson, Inc., Murray, and Kristen Pace, junior web/graphic designer, G/O Digital, Nashville, Tenn.

Journalism students were able to talk with Mealand Ragland, reporter, The Tennessean, Nashville, Tenn.; Lori Barrett, news assignment manager, WPSD-TV; and Carrie Dillard, news editor, the Paducah Sun.

Public Relations majors met with Tab Brockman, superintendent, Hopkinsville Parks and Recreation Department, Hopkinsville, Ky.; Kim Hamby, public relations director/media instructor, Mayfield Independent Schools, Mayfield, Ky.; Dana Howard, social media manager, Murray State University; and Debbie Lee, West Kentucky Educational Cooperative.

Television Production students were able to talk with Stephanie Elder, adjunct instructor, Murray State; Jeremy McKeel, director, Digital Media Services, Murray State; and Dave Winder, assistant athletic director-media relations, Murray State.

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Lochte tells about African American radio’s origins

Posted on 13 January 2016 by jmcjournal

Dr. Bob Lochte, JMC dept. chair, was the featured speaker at the University’s Feb. 11 Brown-Bag Lunch. The lunch is sponsored by the Provost and provides an opportunity for faculty to share their research with their peers.

Dr. Bob Lochte covered the origins of African American radio in the late 1940s as part of the University’s Brown-Bag Lunch series.


Lochte’s presentation was WDIA – Memphis: The First Radio Station Programmed for African Americans by African Americans.

The presentation chronicled how a new 250-watt AM daytimer with limited capital had very little chance of success in Memphis, the second largest city in the South, in 1947. When the owners decided to target the large African American population, the WDIA audience grew rapidly and the station reached number two in the ratings in less than two years. In the process, WDIA created a format which was imitated in markets across the South and beyond and became a training ground for African American radio personalities.

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