There’s a new guy in charge of programming at FM 94/9. Kevin Callahan, the program director at country-music station KSON-FM, is replacing Garett Michaels, who left his post as program director at 94/9 last week.
Callahan didn’t respond to multiple phone calls and emails from CityBeat, but his boss at Lincoln Financial Media— which owns 94/9, KSON and Smooth FM 98.1—says Callahan will continue working for KSON while taking over at 94/9.
“He’s a great guy. He’s a great [program director]. He’s worked every format imaginable,” says Rick Jackson, senior vice president and general manager of the three stations. “He’s perfectly situated to handle this for us.”
Though Jackson says there are no plans to change the station’s format, Callahan clearly has his work cut out. The alt-rock station has seen its ratings languish, and it’s competing against six other local rock stations. Arbitron, the radio industry’s ratings service, currently ranks 94/9 as No. 21 in the San Diego market, Jackson says.
A seasoned radio man, Callahan previously served as regional vice president of programming for Pamal Broadcasting in Albany, N.Y., before taking over at KSON in 2010. Under his direction, the station rose from No. 13 on the ratings charts to its current place at No. 1, Jackson says.
Michaels had been at 94/9 since the station launched in November 2002. “I’m at peace with it,” he told CityBeat about his departure. “It was a great run.”
The nominees have been announced for the San Diego Music Awards—check out our music blog, Check 1, Check 2, to read the full list. Online voting in non-album categories begins Monday, June 25, and continues through July 26; head to sandiegomusicawards.com to participate. The awards ceremony goes down at Humphreys Concerts by the Bay on Monday, Aug. 13.