When viewers heard Curt Gilleo and Gene Purdum during the April 2012 Spring into Action fundraising campaign, they were hearing the end of an era. After April 27, Curt and Gene take their well-deserved retirements from WKAR Radio.
Joining them on the retiree list will be Nancy Gilleo, WKAR’s business manager, who somehow manages to keep on top of the volumes of paperwork and grant materials required to keep a public broadcasting station on the air.
Curt, WKAR Radio’s station manager, has been with the station since 1970 when he was an unpaid student production assistant in the newsroom. After graduating from MSU, he returned to WKAR in 1974 and has been here 38 years. He started as a news reporter and host, before becoming news director/AM program manager, and then station manager seven years ago.
Nancy started her career at MSU nearly 34 years ago, working at the library and Instructional Television Services before coming to WKAR Radio in 1989 as business manager. Until the station merged with TV, she also took on the role of doing traffic, creating broadcast logs for AM and FM and running the audio board.
Gene, WKAR Radio’s program director, has been at WKAR for over 36 years, playing an integral role in station operations both on air and off. He’s also helped us with Stay Tuned, proof reading each issue.
With over a hundred years of collective experience to their names, the departure of the Gilleos and of Gene Purdum will leave a difficult-to-fill chasm here at WKAR. But that said, we wish them many wonderful years of retirement with no early-morning emergency calls!
Before he takes off to re-read Dickens’ novels, train for competitive 12-and-24-hour bicycle races and engage in storm spotting for the National Weather Service, we asked Gene Purdum to share some albums of any genre that are a must for his collection.
Charlie Barnett: Skyliner
Philip Glass: Powaqqatsi soundtrack
Franz Berwald: 4 Symphonies (Neeme Jarvi, conducting)
Beethoven: Violin Concerto (Jascha Heifetz, Boston Symphony)
Mussorgsky: Boris Godunov (Robert Lloyd and Olga Borodina)
Patrick Doyle: Henry V Soundtrack
Verdi: Aida (Leontyne Price)
Mahler: Symphony No. 2 (Leonard Bernstein, conducting)