Radio Ink Magazine

2019 MOST INFLUENTIAL WOMEN in RADIO

If you aren’t familiar with the 1976 movie and current Broadway play Network, you might want to check it out. Considered one of the 10 greatest screenplays in the history of cinema, it’s the story of a network anchor whose agitated on-air rants culminate in the now infamous and oft-quoted line, “I’m as mad as hell, and I’m not going to take this anymore.”

Cue to women, women who are speaking out and holding ground on issues that have been roiling under the surface for years. There is no turning back. This has become the moment. This is the time. Network has jumped off the pretend screen and into the real workplace.

How women can and will reshape the landscape is yet to be seen. But I wouldn’t worry about that. Women have been organizing, strategizing, collaborating, building consensus, and executing a plan — all before they open the door to the office — since the beginning of time.

And none are in a better position to do that than women in the radio industry. Over the next pages, you’ll read about some of those who are setting the pace and calling the shots. They are the 2019 Radio Ink Most Influential Women in Radio.

As someone who can count a piece of multiple decades as part of my career, you’ll have to excuse my personal pride in this year’s MIW list. Over the years, I have had the privilege of working with some, mentoring a few, and simply watching in awe others as they have climbed the ranks and then reached a hand down to lift others up the career ladder as well.

No one “pays it forward” better than women. Perhaps it stems from an innate nurturing instinct, or maybe it reflects an understanding of how hard it has been for many of them to achieve their current status. Having reached career heights, they want to give others a more equitable start.

Once again this year, we honor 50 women who are impacting the broad scope of the industry, as well as 15 from the ranks of on air and 12 in corporate communications. While it would be impossible to include every woman who is effecting change and advancing the industry, the selections are based on criteria that consider a multitude of factors, from national footprint and general industry impact to local and regional engagement. It is a constantly evolving process designed to reflect the changes that have occurred since the first MIW list was published in 1999.

And we are indeed proud of the strides women have made in radio over those 20 years. We applaud them for their achievements and we salute the industry for its support of women, especially over the past two decades (keep it up). We at Radio Ink also take a measure of pride in the role we have played by spotlighting and recognizing women in radio over that time. In addition to the annual MIW list, Radio Ink has been proud to give voice to women on our covers, as columnists and conference participants, and as honorees on everything from the Top 40 to our PD lists. The more we shine a light on these remarkable professionals, the more it helps open doors for others to follow. Like knowledge, positive press is a powerful tool.

Equally powerful tools are the thoughtful perspectives our honorees provide on the next pages. In their own words, you’ll get their insights on how they built their careers, what advice they would have for others, and their reflections on the changing workplace and what they think is in store for the future. Their words are compelling and inspiring. They come from all places and all points of view. They are women, they are strong, and they are changing radio and the world.

CHRISTINA ALBEE

Chief Marketing Officer Cumulus Radio Station Group Westwood One

Christina Albee is responsible for branding, partnerships, sales execution, ideation, and activation for Cumulus and its divisions, through the lens of revenue generation.

Albee loves radio because “it’s a family affair.” She says, “I listen to radio all the time — in the office with my work family and in my personal time with my husband and kids. It’s always on, and it always reminds me that I’m connected to a person, place, or cultural conversation.”

Albee’s advice for anyone starting out in radio: “Be a great listener! What I mean by that is be a student of the medium — listen to the radio across all types of formats and platforms. And listen and ask questions to everyone and anyone you work with. I believe that active listening and questioning is the best way to learn and be successful, and also ultimately advance. Learning and curiosity never end. And when the next generation starts to ask you questions, take the time to respond and to teach. To me, that is the true definition of influence.”

On whether the workplace environment has gotten better for women: “I think that every day we ask this question, we have the opportunity to make the workplace better for women. There has been much social conversation surrounding workplace diversity, equal pay, harassment, and parental leave that has helped propel improvements on a global level, but every day, every employee, manager, leader, and operator needs to lead the change. As a parent of two young women, I also think it’s important to set an example for them, while also teaching them that workplace equality is not a nice-to-have, it’s a need-to-have.”

ANGIE BALDERAS

SVP/Sacramento-Stockton-Modesto Entravision

“I love radio because it is a constant companion,” says Angie Balderas. “Think about it: when we are happy, sad, entertained, informed, radio is there.”

Her advice for those just getting into the business: “If you want to be successful in radio (or any business), do what others are not willing to do, don’t be too proud to do any job, look at those who are successful and study their path — but forge your own. Never stop learning or asking questions. Network with other successful people in your market and across the country. Don’t just take, be a ‘giver.’ Invest in yourself — learning, your appearance, your health.”

CAROLINE BEASLEY

Chief Executive Officer Beasley Media Group

As the CEO of one of radio’s fastest-growing companies, Caroline Beasley has a lot on her plate, overseeing the development and implementation of the company’s short- and long-term strategy. “In my role, I lead and motivate our 1,500 employees and manage the overall operations of the company,” she says. “In addition, I create and implement the company’s vision and mission as well as serve as the primary contact between the board and the company. I also represent the company as its ambassador.” In fact, Beasley is a great ambassador for all of radio and gives much of her time to the NAB and RAB to help grow the entire industry.

Beasley loves radio because “we make a difference in the communities we serve on a daily basis.” She says, “Every day is different. Radio’s greatest strength is being live and local. We provide listeners with great locally originated content available on more platforms than ever before. I am proud to be in this business.”

Beasley’s advice for anyone starting out in radio:

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