Salem Media Group (NASDAQ: SALM), announced that after 23 years at the helm in Philadelphia, Russ Whitnah has plans to retire as VP/GM at the end of the year. Whitnah has been the "face" of Salem in Philly since Salem's entry into the market. Salem purchased WFIL-AM in late 1993 and Russ Whitnah took over as General Manager in January 1994. In August 1994 a second station (now WNTP-AM) was added to the cluster.
During those years Russ has built the Philadelphia team with a focused commitment to the mission of Salem, and the needs of the community. In 2004 he was promoted to Vice President, a mark of distinction for Salem General Managers.
Whitnah commented, "I look forward to passing the baton to the next generation of leadership in Philadelphia. Serving alongside my co-workers and our ministries for the past 23 years has been a tremendous joy and privilege. Working for Salem Media Group has been the most rewarding work experience of my life. The Salem leadership at the top levels of our company are without doubt the highest caliber professionals in the communications industry today."
Russ's broadcast career started in 1972 as a sales rep for the campus radio station while he was attending Oklahoma State University. Prior to joining Salem, he held sales positions at KMOD in Tulsa, OK and KTOK in Oklahoma City, and leadership positions in Colorado Springs, CO; Harrisburg, PA; and the QUAD Cities during a broadcast career spanning 44 years.
Dave Santrella, President of Salem's Broadcast Division commented: "Russ has been a 'pillar' for us in Philadelphia. You would be hard-pressed to find a pastor in the market that doesn't know and love Russ. He has personified the Salem mission day in and day out for many years. I'm excited that he will be able to devote more time to his wife Trish, his parents, and enjoying his children and 14 grandchildren."
A national search for Whitnah's successor is underway seeking both internal and external candidates. Salem Operational VP David Ruleman is heading up this search.
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ABOUT SALEM MEDIA GROUP:
Salem Media Group is America's leading multimedia company specializing in Christian and conservative content, with media properties comprising radio, digital media and book, magazine and newsletter publishing. Each day Salem serves a loyal and dedicated audience of listeners and readers numbering in the millions nationally. With its unique programming focus, Salem provides compelling content, fresh commentary and relevant information from some of the most respected figures across the media landscape.
The company, through its Salem Radio Group, is the largest commercial U.S. radio broadcasting company providing Christian and conservative programming. Salem owns and operates 118 local radio stations, with 73 stations in the top 25 media markets. Salem Radio Network ("SRN") is a full-service national radio network, with nationally syndicated programs comprising Christian teaching and talk, conservative talk, news, and music. SRN is home to many industry-leading hosts including: Bill Bennett, Mike Gallagher, Hugh Hewitt, Michael Medved, Dennis Prager and Eric Metaxas.
Salem New Media is a powerful source of Christian and conservative themed news, analysis, and commentary. Salem's Christian sites include: Christianity.com®, BibleStudyTools.com, GodTube.com, GodVine.com, WorshipHouseMedia.com and OnePlace.com. Considered by many to be a consolidation of the conservative news and opinion sector's most influential brands, Salem's conservative sites include RedState.com, Townhall.com®, HotAir.com, Twitchy.com, BearingArms.com and HumanEvents.com.
Salem's Regnery Publishing unit, with a 65-year history, remains the nation's leading publisher of conservative books. Having published many of the seminal works of the early conservative movement, Regnery today continues as the dominant publisher in the conservative space, with leading authors including: Ann Coulter, Dinesh D'Souza, Newt Gingrich, David Limbaugh, Ed Klein and Mark Steyn. Salem's book publishing business also includes Xulon Press™, a leading provider of self-publishing services for Christian and conservative authors.
Salem Publishing™ publishes Christian and conservative magazines including Homecoming®, YouthWorker Journal™, The Singing News, and Preaching.
Salem's Eagle Financial Publications provides general market analysis and non-individualized investment strategies from financial commentators Mark Skousen, Nicholas Vardy, Doug Fabian, Bryan Perry and Bob Carlson, as well as a stock screening website for dividend investors (DividendInvestor.com). The business unit's other financial websites include EagleDailyInvestor.com, DividendYieldHunter and ETFU.com.
Eagle Wellness provides insightful health advice and is a trusted source of high quality nutritional supplements from some of the country's leading health experts. Leigh Erin Connealy, M.D., at NewportNaturalHealth.com, is the medical director of one of the largest medical practices in the country where she practices integrative medicine. Ski Chilton, Ph.D., at GeneSmart.com, is a scientist and full professor at Wake Forest Medical School. He is a leading authority on the impact of diet and nutrition on health.