2015 Country Radio Hall of Fame Honorees Announced


(Nashville, Tenn. – Feb. 25, 2015) –  The 2015 Country Radio Hall of Fame inductees in both the Radio and On-Air categories were announced today, Feb. 25, during the CRS 2015 Opening Ceremonies.  

The Radio inductees are Joel RaabSammy George and Mike Kennedy. The inductees in the On-Air category are Randy Carroll(KAJA/San Antonio, TX) and Karen Dalessandro (WMIL/Milwaukee, Wis.). 

Country music superstars Garth Brooks and Trisha Yearwood made a surprise appearance and announced this year’s recipients.

The class of 2015 will be officially inducted at the Country Radio Hall of Fame Induction Dinner and Awards ceremony on Wednesday, June 24, 2015. The event, which is typically scheduled in conjunction with Country Radio Seminar, will now coincide with the Country Radio Broadcasters annual summer Board and Agenda committee meetings. Information regarding ticket prices and the event location will be available in the coming months.

The Country Radio Hall of Fame is dedicated to the recognition of those individuals who have made significant contributions to the radio industry over a 20-year period, 15 of which must be in the Country format.

“The Hall of Fame Selection Committee clearly did its homework here, evaluating a large and impressive slate of candidates before selecting these five deserving honorees for 2015,” said CRS Hall of Fame Chairman, RJ Curtis. “The inductees for the Radio and On-Air categories represent many years of service and countless contributions to the Country radio/music industry, per the criteria for this distinction. I thank the committee and congratulate the Country Radio Hall of Fame, Class of 2015. We look forward to a wonderful night on June 24 in Nashville when we formally induct these groundbreaking Country broadcasters.”

About Joel Raab: Joel Raab began his radio career as a 15-year-old air personality at WTHE/Long Island, N.Y. After serving as Air Talent/Student GM for Northwestern University’s WNUR, Raab went on to programming and on-air positions in Pittsburgh, Cleveland, and New York. For the past 30 years, he has successfully consulted more than 200 Country stations spanning all market sizes while working for broadcast companies such as CBS Radio, Entercom, Greater Media, Journal, Digity, Saga, and many others.

About Sammy George: During his 38-year career in radio, Sammy George handled virtually every position inside a radio station, including on-air-personality, Program Director, News Reporter, sports play-by-play announcer, Sales Executive and Director of Sales. His final 22 years in the radio business saw George serve as GM/Market Manager for WUSY/Chattanooga where he led the station to 73 consecutive No. 1 rating books, nine CMA Station of the Year awards, two ACM Station of the Year trophies, NAB Crystal and Marconi Awards, plus an eight-year run as the “Chattanooga Times Free Press” Readers’ Choice Award for Best Local Radio Station.

About Mike Kennedy:
 Mike Kennedy’s radio bug started in 1976 while attending high school in Emporia, Kansas, landing a job at KVOE. He continued pursuing the business while attending college, earning degrees in Broadcasting and Business. In 1984, he became the youngest station owner in the United States with his purchase of WFXI/Haines City, Fla. He rejoined KVOE in 1985 for mornings, sales, and play-by-play duties, and then moved to KEGS/Emporia where he assumed GM duties. A three-year stint at Top 40 KXXR followed, prior to his joining KBEQ in 1991. In 1993, Kennedy oversaw the station’s move from Top 40 to Country as PD/Morning personality, positions he continues to hold today.

About Randy Carroll: During his 32 years with KAJA/San Antonio, which nearly equals the station’s tenure as a Country outlet, Randy Carroll has been a mainstay in mornings for San Antonio Country radio listeners. Carroll also doubled at KAJA PD for many years and is already a member of the San Antonio Radio Hall of Fame. During his time at KAJA, Carroll has received multiple nominations for personality of the year honors from the ACM and CMA, winning the ACM trophy in 2012 with his on-air partner, Jamie Martin.

About Karen Dalessandro: At 19 years of age, Karen Dalessandro’s radio career began as the midday host at WSDS-AM/Ypsilanti, Mich. She eventually landed mornings at WYCD/Detroit, then afternoons at crosstown WWWW. In 1998, Dalessandro shifted to WMIL/Milwaukee for mornings, where she has since remained, co-hosting the “Karen, Scott, & Radar” morning show. In 2001, the show was honored with a CMA Broadcast Personality of the Year award. She has contributed to her community, forming her “Karen’s Check Up For Chicks” campaign, which has provided mammogram screenings for hundreds of woman in Southeast Wisconsin. Dalessandro has also introduced numerous Country artists to her audience via her morning show, providing first-time exposure to artists such as Luke Bryan, Keith Urban, Lady Antebellum, Sugarland and countless others.

About Country Radio Seminar: Country Radio Seminar is an annual convention designed to educate and promote the exchange of ideas and business practices in the Country music industry with specific emphasis on issues relevant to Country radio. CRS 2015 is being held Feb. 25-27, 2015, in downtown Nashville, Tenn., at the Nashville Convention Center.