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Posted by: YourRealDad, February 8, 2008, 8:27pm
Marty Forbes "Edmontonians"
February 2008


The red hot Alberta economy has attracted interest from several broadcasters across the country as the CRTC has issued yet another call for more “new FM licences” in the City of Edmonton. The deadline has just passed and I think you’ll see anywhere between nine and 12 various applications presented. This on the heels of the four new radio stations the city got just over two years ago.
In a market where there are already 23 off-air signals, (inclusive of CKUA, CBC, CJSR, Satellite, Internet), I personally think we’ve reached the saturation point. However, most of these applicants think there is a niche format or two that the city might be interested in. Applications will be heard later this year.

Before I forget, I’d like to compliment my key Astral Media radio program directors Ryan Zimmerman at The Bear and Steve Moore at E Z Rock for placing first and second in the FM rankings in the Fall Bureau of Broadcast measurements’ ratings. That is quite an accomplishment in our highly competitive market. The #1 overall spot goes to Doug Rutherford’s Corus News Talk station 630 CHED on AM.

People stuff: Gord Whitehead is back behind the CHED mic after his shoulder operation.We’ll find out how well it really took when he tees off in the spring. Good to have one of the city’s best broadcasters back on the airwaves.And, the station’s long-running Santa’s Anonymous campaign was a huge success again this year, despite a very challenging time dealing with the tainted toy problems that have been well documented. Good work and congrats to Debbie Walker and her team.

Well-known media rep Bonni Clark has left her position at Northlands to join ex-media guy, Steve Hogle, at the Alberta Research Council.

There’s a lot happening on the local television scene: At CTV, Promotions Manager David Fisher tells me that Glenn Kubish was named news director in December, replacing Steve Hogle. As well, CTV Canada AM now has gone “Live Across Canada” and added more local daily Edmonton content on the weekday mornings, between 6 and 9 a.m.Web coverage is being increased with the arrival of Amanda Ferguson from the East, and a ramping-up behind the scenes with former Edmonton Journal guy Stewart Shaw. You’ll be seeing Amanda hosting a daily feature in the 6 o’clock news on interesting web stories.

Global General Manager Tim Spelliscy checks in with this update: Paul Ackerman took over as general sales manager in December. Paul is also known for his time at the former K-97, now K-Rock. One of his first hires is Holly Krueger, another long time radio lady and former K-Rock alumnus. Holly has been at the University of Alberta in the sports department for the past year or so.
And, Mark Jan Vrem, former Global Edmonton news director, has surfaced as interim news boss at the network’s Calgary station.
Global News anchor Lynda Steele’s book, Laptop Diaries, became a local best seller in November/December with the entire print run of 5000 copies sold out. I applaud her generosity and that of Richard McCallum who didn’t charge for the printing: 100 percent of the proceeds went to Edmonton Women’s Shelters.

Downtown at City TV, well known GM Craig Roskin informs me that Rogers is now fully operating the downtown station. The final game plan is not set yet; however, you’ll be seeing the new OMNI ethnic television station signing on some time this fall. The OMNI brand is available in several other markets, and will be evolving in Edmonton and Calgary over the next several months.
Gracing the hallways of City right now is my daughter Rayanne who is taking her NAIT practicum at the station.
Finally, a tip of the hat to the Edmonton Oil Kings—especially to Nick Wilson and Coach Steve Pleau—on an excellent launch of junior hockey in our city this season. For a first-year WHL team they presented an entertaining product featuring a group of up and coming hockey stars. They also just hosted the amazing Junior Prospects game to showcase the talents of the world’s best
17-year olds in front of more than 300 scouts prior to the upcoming NHL draft. Kudos’ to the entire Oilers/Oil King operation on a great start in the City of Champions.

I don’t want to gloat but… Kim and I headed south before the big chill hit Edmonton. Now, it’s off to Phoenix for the Superbowl. I live a blessed life.

Marty Forbes is VP and general manager of The Bear,
EZRock and The TEAM 1260 Sports Radio
Posted by: Rupert, February 10, 2008, 4:27am; Reply: 1
I'd like to thank Marty Forbes for his articles in "Edmontonians" and thank him for his incredible contributions to the Radio Industry

I salute you sir!
Posted by: jundamurra, February 14, 2008, 12:50am; Reply: 2
Very nice.
Marty Forbes is a class act, and a straight shooter.

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