Six broadcasters will join the Country Radio Hall of Fame in 2019. Two on-air personalities and four program directors will be honored. The off-air inductees are Mac Daniels (KPLX and KSCS/Dallas) formerly KALM, KBOX/Dallas, KPLX, WMXQ/Washington, KASE & KVET/Austin, WYCD/Detroit, iHeartMedia, KSKS/Fresno, and NASH-FM/San Francisco; Bobby Denton (WIVK/Knoxville); Jeff Garrison (KCYY/Cox Media), formerly KKBQ, WESC, WFNQ/Greenville, KMLE/Phoenix, KILT; and Gregg Lindahl (Cox Media) formerly KOMA/Oklahoma City, WSM-AM/FM, WKY, WSOC-A/F/Charlotte, KUPL/Portland, and WKXK/Chicago.
The two air personalities are Charlie Monk, the longtime host on SiriusXM’s “Prime Country” format, and Kyle Cantrell who began working for Sirius Satellite radio on its Classic Country channel in 2002 and added T2K programming duties in 2013, as well as Enlighten, SiriusXM’s Gospel brand.
Daniels and Garrison recently made Radio Ink‘s list of the Best Program Directors in Country Radio.
Here are the bios of the four Radio Category inductees:
Mac Daniels: Daniels has been working in radio for more than 40 years, beginning his career while still in high school, at Country/Gospel KALM/Thayer, MO, where he doubled as a salesperson. Drawn more to programming, Daniels was named for overnights at KBOX/Dallas while still in his teens. In 1980, Daniels segued to newly launched Country outlet KPLX/Dallas and stayed for the next 14 years initially handling part-time air shifts, while helping establish the station’s research department. Daniels took on overnights, then evenings, soon adding Music Director responsibilities. During his time at KPLX, Daniels was honored with the Billboard Major Market Music Director of the Year six times and won the CMA MD of the Year trophy twice (1989, 1990). Major market programming opportunities followed, as Daniels eventually programmed nationally respected brands such as WMZQ/Washington, KASE & KVET/Austin, and WYCD/Detroit. In 2004, He was given Regional Programming responsibilities, based in Austin again, where he doubled as OM for the six-station Austin Cluster for iHeartMedia. Programming stints included KSKS/Fresno and NASH-FM/San Francisco, upon its 2013 launch. Daniels’ career came full circle in 2016 when he was named PD for Cumulus-owned Country combo KPLX and KSCS/Dallas, where he remains. KPLX is the highest cuming Country station in America and has been honored with an NAB Marconi Award.
Bobby Denton: Denton spent his entire 49-year career at WIVK/Knoxville, helping build the station into the iconic radio brand it is today. Denton started on the air and rose to a leadership position at WIVK and, its parent company, Dick Broadcasting where he was elevated to VP in 1981. In that role, Denton was responsible for the company’s radio stations in Knoxville, Nashville, Greensboro, NC, Colorado Springs, CO, and Birmingham, AL. Denton helped WIVK in garnering numerous industry awards, including eight CMA Station of the year honors; five ACM Station of the Year trophies, and four Marconi Awards. In addition to this year’s inclusion in the Country Radio Hall of Fame, Denton is also a member of the Opryland Disc Jockey Hall of Fame, and the Tennessee Radio Hall of Fame. Denton enters the Country Radio Hall of Fame posthumously, after passing away following a short bout with cancer in 2014.
Jeff Garrison: Garrison’s journey to the Country Radio Hall of Fame started in Nacogdoches, TX in 1983, working every possible air shift for Country and Top 40 formats. He quickly gravitated to programming in 1985, and then moved to Houston in 1993, signing on KKBQ. Garrison moved to WESC and WFNQ/Greenville, SC in 1994, then KMLE/Phoenix in 1996, before returning to Houston, and the programming helm at KILT. In addition to his day-to-day responsibilities, Garrison took on VP/Country Programming for KILT parent company CBS Radio, with oversight of 23 Country outlets nationwide. Since 2013, Garrison has called San Antonio home, programming KCYY, and serving as format leader for Cox Media’s six Country stations. Garrison has also given back to the Country industry, serving on the ACM and CMA board of directors.
Gregg Lindahl: Lindahl has handled responsibilities at every level in radio, starting as an on-air personality before rising to MD, PD, and GM during 20 years at 10 Country stations in seven markets. His career included 15 years at the corporate level, leading a market research company while pioneering digital initiatives. Like many radio professionals of his generation, Lindahl started while attending high school in Ortonville, MN. In 1980, he moved to KOMA/Oklahoma City, launching it as a Country station. A move to legendary Country brands WSM-AM/FM followed and included WSM-FM’s move to Country. Lindahl returned to Oklahoma to program WKY and soon became the station GM. His managerial career continued at WSOC-A/F/Charlotte, KUPL/Portland, and WKXK/Chicago – which he flipped to Country in 1995. In 1995, Lindahl joined Cox Media, serving as President for Eagle Research, and later VP/Interactive and New Technologies, and SVP/Digital Strategy. Lindahl has served on the CMA Board of Directors, the CRS agenda committee, and has been called upon for core moderator duties at recent CRS events.