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Brian Thomas Shifts From PD of WNSH To WLS-FM

Brian Thomas 94.7 WLS-FM John Records Landecker 94.7 NashFM WNSH New YorkCumulus Media continues its shuffling of major market programmers as Brian Thomas moves from Country “94.7 Nash-FM” WNSH New York to Classic Hits 94.7 WLS-FM Chicago.

Thomas takes the spot that had been held by Jan Jeffries before he moved to CHR “All The Hits 107.3” WRQX Washington DC earlier this month. As part of the move Thomas will add Corporate Program Director duties for the Classic Hits format to his role as a Corporate PD/Country. He joined Cumulus in April 2014 to program WNSH from CBS where he was National Vice President of Classic Hits programming and PD of Country 99.5 WQYK and Classic Hits “Q105” 104.7 WRBQ in Tampa. He had previously spent many years in New York where he programmed Classic Hits 101.1 WCBS-FM (and was involved in their return from Variety Hits “JackFM“) and “Fresh 102.7” WWFS.

John Foxx, who programmed WNSH as well as sister Hot AC 95.5 WPLJ prior to Thomas’ arrival in 2014 will oversee that station until a permanent replacement is named. Foxx was demoted from PD of WPLJ to APD earlier this month when Rick Gillette was moved from WRQX to WPLJ in the move that sent Jan Jeffries from WLS-FM.

In an unrelated move to Thomas joining WLS-FM, market legend John Records Landecker announced he will step away from his position as 8pm-11pm host at the end of this week. Landecker has been with WLS-FM since 2006.

Cumulus Media announces that it has named programming executive Brian Thomas as Program Director for Chicago’s Classic Hits 94.7 WLS-FM. Thomas will continue to serve Cumulus as Corporate Program Director for the Country format, and will now also oversee Classic Hits for the company.

Thomas moves to Chicago from Cumulus New York, where he joined Cumulus last year as Corporate Program Director and Program Director for NASH FM 94.7/WNSH-FM. Prior to joining Cumulus, he was with CBS Radio as National Vice President of Classic Hits programming. He was also Program Director of Country WQYK-FM and Classic Hits WRBQ-FM, and Vice President, Programming for CBS Radio in Tampa.

Mike McVay, Senior Vice President, Content and Programming for Cumulus said: “Brian’s performance with Cumulus, and his prior experience, makes us confident that this is the right move for this station. He knows this format and how to maximize its potential.”

Thomas said: “Every kid from Chicago who grew up listening to WLS-FM, as I did, dreams of working there. I’m proud that NASH-FM weekly audience hit an all-time high of almost 1.2 million and sales pacing +20% in a down market…and I’m excited to continue to work with a handful of our Country stations, too.”

Profile photo of Lance Venta
Lance Venta is the Owner and Publisher of RadioInsight.com and a consultant for RadioBB Networks specializing in integration of radio and the internet. Lance has two decades of experience tracking the audio industry and its use of digital platforms.

3 Comments

  1. Profile photo of joseph_gallant


    Would Cumulus actually flip WLS-94.7 to “Nash” or “Nash Icon”, given Brian Thomas’ recent experience in the country format??

    With WLS-FM’s biggest “name” (John Records Landecker) leaving, I wonder……

    • Profile photo of Nathan Obral


      If Cumulus was going to go country in Chicago, they would have flipped 101.1 to NASH FM back in January 2014. But they restored the modern rock and WKQX calls instead.

  2. Profile photo of charles57


    Chicago already has 2 full-market Country stations. You really think Cumulus is going to blow up a successful Oldies signal just to put in a third Country FM?

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