This is why Journal earns respectDon Day | August 4, 2008
Journal Communications acquired all sorts of stuff when it bought KFXJ nearly a decade ago. Equipment, a transmitter, the frequency and a small handful of employees.
Two of those folks – Rochelle Smith and Rockwell Smith (no relation) are still with the company, and each has proved themselves to be among the best things to come along with the purchase of KF-95. While The River bears little resemblance to the old KF-95, both Rochelle and Rocky continue to keep that independent, listener-focused spirit alive.
I was reminded of why Journal is so lucky by Rocky’s comment on the KGEM audio problem. He explains all the things he and Journal do for customers that are unhappy with hearing original hits (or more recently – oldies). As is noted with the recent KIGO example – the station could easily say “it is Qwest’s problem” and clam up, but instead they jump through hoops to make people happy.
As for the “other” R. Smith – Rochelle is often hailed for her extra work. Much of the station’s online effort, including the MySpace page with all the audio goodies is her doing.
You can buy a frequency, dump everything and try to rebuild it from the ground – but finding good people and hanging on to them (no matter if you hire them from the Internet or get them in a multi-million dollar acquisition) is what makes a radio company unique.
(PS: I wanted to put an old KF95 logo on this entry [the one with the music staff and the quarter notes], but I can’t find one. If you can send me a digital version of the logo, I’d appreciate it!)