It's become one of our most popular lists of the year. The 2015 Best PDs in America can now be seen between the pages of the latest Radio Ink magazine. And the number-one PD in America is iHeartMedia's Chris Conley. Conley programs WLTW in New York City. Every time a ratings book comes out, just like clockwork, WLTW sits on top of the pack. Not bad, in the number-one market in America. iHeartMedia New York SVP/Programming Thea Mitchem says, "Chris is a creative visionary who has the pulse on Adult Contemporary listeners' evolution of tastes and expectations. Chris has a great balance for the art and science of programming, and his passion and expertise continue to keep LTW at the top of its game."
Conley is nearing four decades in the radio business, and in that time he"s racked up miles of experience and a winning track record. "I'm thrilled to be on Radio Ink's list of top PDs this year," he says. "It's hard for me to believe I'm in my 37th year of radio broadcasting and 25th as a program director. On most days I'm as enthusiastic to come into the radio station as when I was starting out as an overnight weekend DJ in Dayton, OH." Conley goes on, "It's exciting and challenging to help keep a legendary station like WLTW on top. Fortunately, the station is well-supported to fight off challengers. We strive to be consistent and continue to build the brand walls higher each day. The station continues to evolve musically and with its presentation. I hear at least once a week from listeners and people in our business how surprised they are by the playlist. It matches the listeners' taste up to the moment, but still surprises some folks who aren't listening or close to it every day.?
Conley says a great program director is someone who lets creative people be creative. "Advice that I've given to two programmers this week: Coach and course-correct, but stop being a control freak. It's important for a programmer to be open-minded about change. Tastes change over time. Today's AC station shouldn't sound like it lives in the '80s, even though lots of the music is from that decade." iHeartMedia EVP/GM National Programming Platforms Clay Hunnicutt tells Radio Ink Conley understands his audience and his station, and how they come together for a great sense of community: "He makes a big impact across WLTW and all of iHeart-Media's AC stations, talent, and programmers."
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