Published on Tuesday, 26 July 2011 12:40
Merlin Media LLC continues to beef up its staff in Chicago, including two new on-air members for WWWN-FM and a new upper-level executive for WLUP-FM.
Joining WWWN-FM as a news anchor/reporter is Chicago radio veteran Monica DeSantis. A native of Toronto, ON, Canada, has a degree in Fine Arts Acting from the University of Windsor. In Canada, she had roles in many movies, TV and live productions, before joining CFRB as part of that radio station's morning news show for almost 5 years. In 1997, DeSantis and her husband moved to the Chicago area, where she then joined Westwood One's Metro Networks/Shadow Traffic, which allowed her to be heard on numerous Chicagoland radio stations including WBBM-AM, WSCR-AM, WCKG-FM, and some suburban stations. After Metro/Shadow released many staffers in a cost-cutting purge in 2008, WLS-AM hired DeSantis for their afternoon & evening news.
While at WLS, she also worked at WLS-FM for a short while, doing news for Brant Miller's morning show on the station. Coincidentally, Brant Miller has also joined WWWN-FM
and will be again be working morning radio shift.
Monica was being moved (some could say, demoted) from midday news anchor duty at WLS-AM to evening duty, replacing Lise Dominique, who quit the station to work for WWWN-FM at the end of last month. WLS-AM will now have to find yet another replacement.
Another new voice to WWWN-FM is that of Mike Wilson. Wilson was born in Virginia, but raised in Chicago. A Columbia College Chicago graduate, Mike Wilson began his radio career as a producer at WLS-AM in 2000/2001. Soon after, he was hired as a show host and State Capitol Bureau Chief at WMAY-AM in Springfield, IL at the age of only 21. In 2005, Wilson left radio to work with campaigns and media output, first for the Illinois State Senate, and then as an independent consultant. He returned to radio last year as an anchor/reporter for WOWO-AM in Ft. Wayne, IN, working his way up to News Director earlier this year. He will be exiting WOWO-AM this week and will become one of WWWN-FM's new overnight anchors.
Wilson has also been known to do some stand-up comedy and is happy to be returning back home to Chicago.
As WWWN-FM, currently being called "101.1 FM New," gets closer to its official launch date as a brand new news-oriented station in early August, attention begins to turn toward Merlin Media LLC's other Chicago property, WLUP-FM. Newly hired to oversee that station is PJ Kling, who has assumed the title of WLUP-FM's Operations Manager.
This will be the first time working in Chicago radio for PJ Kling. A native of Overland Park, KS, Kling has worked in a few other markets, always for Clear Channel Radio. He started in radio in 1999 as an intern at a CHR station in Wichita, KS, worked his way up to DJ, and then up to Program Director. Since then, he has been Program Director at a CHR station in West Palm Beach, FL and an Executive Assistant to the Vice-President of Clear Channel Radio in Atlanta, GA. He has been living in Chicago for well over a year, however, working for Tribune Company in a non-radio related capacity.