Weatherman, radio host, grandpa, road tripper
Yes, the same guy you’ve watched for 31 years on “AM Kentucky” and “Midday Live” on WBKO each morning is the same guy now on SAM 100.7 every weekday morning from 6-10 am.
“I actually started in radio, then got into television,” Chris said. “This is all like a homecoming for me. Radio is where I started because of my passion for music.”
Chris says he got into radio while still attending high school in White House, Tennessee. “There were two things I knew I wanted to do in life, weather, and radio. Bowling Green and Southern Kentucky have afforded me the opportunity of a lifetime to do both, and for that, I will always be grateful” Chris said.
Chris’ radio career began in 1982 at WNAZ, a non-profit, low-power Christian radio station on the campus of Trevecca Nazarene College in Nashville. “I didn’t attend Trevecca but they were willing to give me a shot at radio”. From there, Chris worked at several more Nashville area stations with various formats such as KZ Country, WDBL, WLAC and WSIX. At WSIX in the middle 80s, Chris was the occasional fill in for one of Nashville’s most popular radio personalities Gerry House. “To this day, I don’t know if Gerry even knows I exist, but I was honored to fill his shoes when he wasn’t there – I learned a lot”.
While working at WSIX, Chris saw a newspaper ad for a new TV station coming to Nashville. “They were looking for people to shoot video, be announcers, edit and so on, so I gave it a shot and it was my first foray into TV.” That new station was then known as WCAY Channel 30. “They didn’t have a news operation but I did occasionally go on and do weather updates”.
From there, Chris was asked to make a big move to Kentucky. Some of the people he worked for at Channel 30 were taking over a small TV station in Columbia – WGRB Channel 34. “Shelia and I were newly married, we had our first daughter and all of a sudden, we found ourselves far from home.” Chris became Creative Service and Promotion Director at WGRB-TV and also watched the weather. “I recall a few times going live during severe weather and a terrible snowstorm that hit Central Kentucky back in January of 1985. I was the only one on staff that knew anything about the weather”. While living and working in Columbia, Kentucky, Chris continued to keep his radio career going by working at WLBN/WLSK in Lebanon, Kentucky. “I worked for the great J.T. Whitlock – for those of you who knew J.T., that’s all you need to know!”
A few years later, an opportunity opened up for Chris to move to Bowling Green and become part of the Creative Services team at WBKO. “I was writing, shooting and editing promos and commercials, just like I did in Nashville and up in Columbia. But my ultimate goal was to end up doing the weather on TV.” Chris’ radio career kept going as well working at “The Beaver” WBVR on weekends. Eventually, Chris would also work for WGGC, WBGN, WCVK, WAYD, WDNS and WBLG, known then as “The Gator G107” (now WUHU). “I recall being hired by Barry Williams after he bought WBGN and he made me Program Director for what we called “The Bear” and switched it to a Country format. Working with people like Barry, Wes Strader, Bud Tyler, Todd Hamilton and Hank Broche taught me a lot about Bowling Green and broadcasting in general.”
In August of 2018, Chris began his 31st, and final year at WBKO. He is now approaching his 40th year as a broadcaster. “There has only been a few months out of my career I haven’t worked both radio and television – I love them both!” In December of 2014, Chris was hired by Commonwealth Broadcasting to do an afternoon radio show on Classic Hits SAM 100.7 FM. “They have allowed me to do the show my way and it is something I look forward to every single day! I wanted my show to be different. In my opinion, there’s way too much chatter on radio – my goal was to focus on the music and the history behind it and make it feel like the kind of radio we all grew up with. I remember when all of these songs were new and hearing them for the first time. I can still remember where I was and what I was doing with most of the songs I play. In a world full of uncertainty, it’s the music we remember that helps bring us back to center” Chris said.
In January 2020, Chris retired from his weather career at WBKO to devote full time to his love of music at SAM 100.7 and moved his afternoon show to mornings from 6-10 am.