Chicago Sun-Times
Lewis Lazare follows Chicago media and marketing news

Melissa Forman out at Clear Channel's WLIT-FM


Morning drive host Melissa Forman is out at adult contemporary WLIT-FM (93.9). As first tipped here two weeks ago, Clear Channel Radio Chicago President and Market Manager Earl Jones has decided to go in a different direction with the station's morning drive show, which in recent months has been on a ratings roller coaster. A new morning drive format is expected to be revealed early next week. Forman's morning show sunk to a 1.5 rating in the June book and 26th place in the rankings before rebounding a bit in the just-released July book to a 2.2 rating, good enough for 20th place among morning drive contenders. Forman's contract was set to expire Oct. 1.


I was very sad to hear that WLIT 93.9 has
dropped Melissa Foreman. I so enjoyed her
show and she was one of the reasons I had continued to listen to WLIT. With this news
I'm not sure if I want to continue as a
loyal listener. Clear Channel should not
be basing there decisions on summer ratings.
I hope they might reconsider. If not I'll
have see whether or not I might drop them from my
listening format.

I woke up every morning at 5:30 purposely to listen to wlit because I knew I could always listen to Melissa, Jim and Rick everymorning. They were my energy to get up and walk. Then they were eliminated from your station and Whoopi Goldberg was on. She was good, but no comparison. I listened infrequently to her and tried other stations with no happy medium. My walks slowed down till she returned. I missed the full team being together, but I still enjoyed her. You broke up a good team and really lost because of it.

I woke up every morning at 5:30 purposely to listen to wlit because I knew I could always listen to Melissa, Jim and Rick everymorning. They were my energy to get up and walk. Then they were eliminated from your station and Whoopi Goldberg was on. She was good, but no comparison. I listened infrequently to her and tried other stations with no happy medium. My walks slowed down till she returned. I missed the full team being together, but I still enjoyed her. You broke up a good team and really lost because of it.

I can't believe Melissa Forman is gone again.
Bring back Rick zurick, and Melissa and you will see how fast your ratings will go up! When you did this the first time and brought Whoopi in look what happened. Everyone protested, and she was back.
Melissa appeals to all ages! WLIT was always different, that is why I liked it so much. All the other stations are boring, dull drab. When Rick was on it seemed more personal and warm. So now your station is like everyone else no personality.

Melissa was a great way to start the day. With her gone, I've taken 93.9 off my station presets.

I was very sad to hear no Melissa in the morning - I have now found a different station to listen to. Good-bye Melissa and the best to you always.

I just heard about Melissa being dropped, I'm very sad to hear that as this was the way to wake up in the morning, to her bubbly personality, and bantering between her, Jimmy & Tony, they were my energy, they appealed to all ages, I now must find a new station which will never compete with Melissa and her group. First you break up the family by terminating Rick Z. now you eliminate the best thing you ever had on your station. I have taken WLIT off my station presets.

I am very upset Melissa is off again. Possibly the ratings would not go down if WLIT would have left alone what did not need to be changed. When Rick Zurick left that was another person who should not have left. Melissa and Rick were great. It is very disappointing WLIT keeps making changes and the changes are not positive. I hope some day the WLIT management team would leave alone what is good which was Rick and Melissa. Very disappointing. If WLIT thinks the ratings will go up by going in a different direction, my opinion is WLIT is WRONG.

Very Disappointed.

I was on vacation and did not have access to the radio station, it was so depressing to once again
loose one of the best Teams on the radio, Bring back Rick, Jimmy, Tony and of course Melissa.
Robin and Deliah are also great back up and could count on them to as well to fill in, the special way they communicated with all the listeners was fun and informing as well. I feel you have made a very BIG mistake once again.
I hope the Team finds a new station soon,
You are all Greatly Missed!!!!

Were is my Melissa--were is she now?
Bring her back........................

I can't believe you did it again. You had such a GREAT team with Melissa, Rick and Jim. Did you people not learn anything from the mess with your attempt with the Whoopi show. Why mess with success. I live in Michigan and have listened to Wlit since finding Melissa and gang. Bring Back Melissa now!!!!!!!!!!! I am not sure I want to continue listening without them. I know I will listen to Robin unless you fire her too. She has the best radio voice!!!

What a very large blunder getting rid of Melissa. I have removed WLIT from my car radio's preset. I would start the morning with Melissa and then keep the radio on throughout the day at work. I have just changed my radio at work to another station. I don't want to listen to a station that just doesn't get it.

I can't believe you did it again! Melissa is great and she was the only reason I listened to your station in the morning. I gave Valentine a try just like I did with Whoopi, and he is TERRIBLE!! Looks like I look for a new station again. You should never mess with success. When you had Melissa, Rick, and Jim it was great.

In my opinion, the management of ClearChannel is truly a mess, and always has been. Melissa Forman was one of the most sincere radio personalities on radio in any market, and in my travels, I've heard many. She was like listening to a friend, a radio personality that actually cared about people. A few years back ClearChannel ended "RealOldies" on 1690AM, which played the best oldies radio of any oldies station anywhere. But the "wonderful" Clearchannel management didn't give it a strong signal, gave it no support, and expected people to know about it to raise the ratings. They even sold advertising on their billboards to a competitive station. It's amazing to me that such an inept bunch of people who think they know what the market wants, can keep Clearchannel in business. Best Wishes, Melissa!

We want our Melissa...I can't listen to WLIT at all without starting my day with her...Time to change the station....

What is wrong with management at WLIT. I have no reason to tune in any more! Without Melissa in the morning you will once again lose me! You lost me with Whoopi and you will lose me again with Valentine! Goodbye!

What a bummer it was when I turned the lite on this morning on my way home from work only to find no Melissa. Whoever was on this morning was BORING!!!!!!! Melissa is fun and energetic, bring her back!!! Get rid of the BIG SHOTS in the fancy offices making these DUMB decisions. Everything looks good on paper or in a board room, did you ever consider to step outside of your little world and see what its like on the other side?? Melissa is AWESOME!!! No more WLIT for this listener. I stopped listening when you brought Whoopi in and I stopped listening again this morning. Watch your ratings go WAY down!


Did you learn nothing the first time you did this? The format is terrible. I have taken your channel off of my presets. The whole reason I listened every single morning was to hear Melissa and her crew. TERRIBLE DECISION!!!

Bring Melissa Back!

i listen to melissa everyday when going to work. it's very informative program and now shes gone no more wlit program in the morning.

Big mistake!! What were you thinking? This new guy doesn't hold a candle to Melissa. I guess it's back to Eric and Kathy for me. Again, WHAT WERE YOU THINKING????

WLIT- the Lite- has been turned off! No reason to listen without Melissa Foreman! Not Good!

I can't believe that Melissa is no longer on WLIT - AGAIN!?!?!?! I woke-up to Melissa and the morning crew everyday (and got my whole family doing the same) and now, no MELISSA?!?!?! She was the best on the radio and you've lost me as a listener (AGAIN!) My suggestion would be to bring her back and pay her what she's worth because she is WORTH iT!!! Until she's back on WLIT, I'm off WLIT!!

Can't believe you are doing this again. Bring Melissa and her crew back. I am lost in the morning without her. I guess I will have to find a new morning show. What a big mistake you are making. Did you not listen when you brought in Whoopi? That was horrible.

Where is Melissa Forman? Management has made another tremendous blunder by replacing Melissa Foreman with Valentine in the Morning which is just a copy cat of other morning shows. Why does Chicagoland need more of the same??? All I hear on my way to work now is meaningless chatter and commercials. I was so happy when Melissa returned after the Whoopi Goldberg fiasco. I’m sure the majority, if not all of the listeners were as happy to have her back as I was. I’ll be switching to another radio station in the morning for sure, and will end up keeping it on that channel all day even though some of my other favorites are still on the LITE. I’m really sorry that this decision has been made. I think it is a terrible mistake.

YEAH!!! What took so long! I had stopped listening a long time ago as i was sick and tired of her! Christmas does not start in October and her giggle was enough to drive a normal person insane - i may actually consider coming back now that there's no chance of hearing Melissa agin!

I was so upset to find out about Melissa Foreman. I listened my whole drive to work and LOVED al the christmas music they played in the holiday season. Will they still play nonstop holiday music? I am so far not a fan of their new morning program. Bring Melissa back!!!!!

I miss Melissa Foreman in the mornings, I know we should give the new team a chance, but, they are droll in the am. The only thing I do agree with is not playing xmas music in Oct or Nov- they drag out xmas enough already- stores have stuff out in August, Bring back Melissa

You have lost a listener. Melissa, Jim, Tony, Rick, etc. were wonderful. Melissa had heart, she had a way of getting anyone to smile, to laugh, to think about others. Genuine person. I am so tired of WLIT. Your current team is boring, dull and no personality. They don't have a clue about starting your day with fun, thought and heart.

I was upset the first time Melissa left and refused to listen to WLIT when Whoopie was on. I was thrilled when Melissa came back. I just turned on one day and she was gone again. The morning show with Valentine is awful. I used to listen to Melissa and WLIT all day. Not anymore. I want the old morning team back. WLIT you lost a listener. I would like to know who picked her up so I can switch to that station.

I am so disappointed that Melissa is gone. The new morning show is not the same at all. I have stopped listening. Very sad.

Please bring Melissa Back!

WLIT is off my presets. When you decide to bring back Melissa send me an email because I won't be listening until she's back. BIG MISTAKE!

I have listened to Melissa for years! She truly is a radio "personality". A judgement error has obviously been made & needs to be corrected. If she jumps to another station - that will be the station I tune into going forward. you never learn???

I cannot believe like everyone else that you did it again. She was the best expeciall when she had Rick and producer Jim with her. You people do not realize what a great person she was to listen to in the mornings. Whe not get rid of Dehlia instead|?

A big listner of |WLit, that may change if I decide to move over to another station.

She was good no matter what your ratings said.


I can't believe Melissa and her team are gone! They were the reason I listened to the station in the morning. You replaced her with Whoopie who was not good as a radio personality and lost alot of listeners and now you do it again! I have stopped listening as much now as there is no connection with the new people.
I also loved the xmas music you played. I don't think it was on to long as Christmas is my favorite time of year because people are nicer to each other and the decorations are beautiful! I think you just need to add new updated xmas songs to the old ones to give it more varity.

I am very upset about WLIT's decision to replace Melissa. You tried it once before with Whoopi and it failed. When are you going to learn? Does it take a bigger drop in ratings to make you realize that Melissa, Rick and Jim the producer were the best team you had and will ever have. Please reconsider your decision and bring them back. Then and only then will I tune in to WLIT.

If the management thinks this Valentine in the morning is going to take Melissa's place...they don't have a clue what there audience wants ...Melissa was so much I have to find another station to listen to

Honestly, I had to google to find out where Melissa had gone. I don't believe management did it again! I always listened to Melissa while driving to work and now I'm going nuts trying to find another interesting channel. Obviously, the decision makers here don't have a clue - why is everything always driven by the "bottom line"?

Hey! I just googled and Melissa has a blog she is posting on (just posted today) about what the Team is up to and her own stuff.

Check it out at

The Lit is now off my playlist. How on earth could they treat someone of Melissa's caliber so unprofessionally. First Whoopi and now Valentine; no Valentine's day for me anymore...

Hello All,
I would listen to Melissa every morning on my way to work. I think she is different from all the other radio stations and truely enjoyed her personality. I hope that you will reconsider and bring her back. Whoopi was a disaster and Valetine will be also. You had Melissa on in the mornign and afternoon..that's a lot and she was still willing to do it...that should tell you something about the dedicated person she is. I don't think that summer is the best time to look at your ratings, people do travel you know.
Hope you reconsider, until then, I'm off of WLIT.

I can only HOPE that they bring her back for the annual Christmas music kick off! She was great and thus now I do not listen to them in the morning I've switched to 100.3 but miss Melissa, Tony and others!

I cannot believe you did it yet again. I really don't know what it is going to take for you to learn!!!!! What a screw up the first time you took Melissa, Jim, and Rick off the air for what, Whoppi? What just because she is a comedian, actress that now made her a radio announcer too?!?! What a joke that was. Well thank God you finally woke up to that fiasco. I really thought you had learn not to mess with perfection. What a fool I was because here we go again. Well, I turned you off once and I will turn you off again. You big wigs really don't know what the working people of Chicago really want. You may think you need to change but hopefully you will wake up sooner rather than later this time before you lose all your dedicated followers for good. How sad!!! I hope you keep us informed Melissa as to where you are going because I will follow you. You made my mornings and they will not be the same again until you are back on the air!!!!!!!!!! Wake up you big bird brains at the top of the Lite. When are you finally going to see the Lite? We ALL want Melissa and crew back, until till then it's "Lites" out!!!!!!!!!!!

Well, here is another Loyal Listener who has taken WLIT off of her presets in her car, at work and at home. Melissa and her crew were funny, informative and just plain enjoyable on a long commute.
As with all of the others posted above, it's Lite's OUT for me too. I'll find someone else for my AM drive.
You people are just plain nuts!!!
P.S. The "Valentine" stinks!!!

I can't believe you did it again. BRING MELISSA BACK! 93.9 is definately off my presets......

I still can't believe Melissa is gone. I really loved listening to her in morning on my way to work. I'm still hoping she'll be back with us.

Oh no not again. Melissa is gone. I can't believe you can make the same mistake twice.
Sorry but Valentine in the morning sound exactly what it is another program for the under 20group.
I will again return to the oldies but goodies until someone else is lucky enough to get Melissa and her team.

I'm as flabbergasted as everyone else. I work with grieving, and sometimes contentious, families all day and really want to listen to something upbeat during my morning commute. I thought I struck gold when I found Melissa's program. Great personalities and a good playlist for that time of day. Melissa creates a real community among her listeners. Melissa! We miss you!! Give us a sign - like your new call letters and time of day.

I am so disgusted and disappointed to not having Melissa Forman on 93.9. I refuse to listen any longer. She was a wonderful individual that was so compassionate. She called my 10 year old daughter when she got out of school to wish her a Happy Birthday because my daughter missed the announcement in the morning on her way to school. My daughter and I love her and it is sad that you took her off!!!

I have listened to Melissa since she started on 93.9 and have loved her and her team. I stopped listening when Whoopie came on and started listening again when they brought Melissa back. I have nothing against the new DJ but I really enjoyed Melissa so once again I will stop listening. I hope that if they realize what a mistake they made and ask Melissa back she will already have another job where they appreciate her and don't play games like 93.9.

Is the wlit management that stupid once again to let Melissa Foreman go. What wlit does not know a good thing when they have it. Melissa and the gang was what got my morning going.

I keep checking WLIT occasionally to see if they brought back Melissa and the team. Not yet, but they will because there is no way this new morning team even compares. These big wigs at the top always think they know everything and they don't know good when they have it.

A Big Mistake Once Again.

Did they learn nothing from the first time they did this? We don't need a guy sitting in a studio in L.A. telling us what's going on in Chicago. Maybe the Lite wasn't in the top 10 in ratings in the morning but the listeners they have (or had) were loyal and loved Melissa and the team. My commute to work is so boring now I can't stand it. I hope Melissa and the team get with a station that will appreciate them.

I listen to the Mix now with Eric and Kathy since Melissa Foreman is gone

Some people never learn - I can't understand you guys letting Melissa and Rick go - surely your ratings are way way down now

You may not even get lucky this time to get Melissa back - I hope some other station picks her and Rick Zurich up as a team and they surely will have a GREAT PROGRAM

I still cannot believe that Melissa and Rick are gone. I was a loyal listener to the Lite in the morning as a result of Melissa and Rick. I cannot even imagine this holiday season of Lite Holiday Music wothout them. I am sorry to say that I have switched over to Eric and Kathy since you let Melissa and Rick go. I cannot figure out how you feel that what you have put in that morning slot is in anyway shape or form better than Melissa and Rick's show. I will continue to listen to Eric and Kathy and hope that Melissa and Rick will appear on the airwaves once again.

I cannot imagine WHY someone would get rid of Melissa Foreman. She's great and one of a kind without all the disgusting stupid humor you hear on other Chicago radio stations. They made the mistake before with replacing her with crazy old Whoopi. It was horrid and I stopped listening till Melissa came back.
Stop being like the corrupt chicago government and doing stupid things, bring back sanity to the airwaves!

Bring Melissa back.. I have been listening to the lite for years, and it's not the same morning show without her. Melissa had an energy that can not be replaced! There is something in her voice that makes you smile. I have a long commute each day, and I must admit I miss Melissa. If you don't bring her back someone else will, and that will hurt your ratings even more. I know times are tough but Melissa is not the problem!

I know I am late to respond to this - thought I would give the new format a chance.....Melissa rocks and this new format is BORING at best. Melissa and her group always energized me in the AM and I rarely rarely turn on the LITE anymore.

Has WLIT's ratings tanked to zero yet???? All any radio station cares about now is the 22-39 year old market segment. As a boomer I hope Clear Channel gets staticky!!!!!!!!!

It's not Melissa as much as it is WLIT and the lousy music it plays. I switched over to FRESH 105.9 a long time ago. Much better offering of up-to-date music.

I was very unhappy to hear that Melissa & the morning team was no longer on. I really enjoyed their show & format. The only reason I am listening now is because I am looking forward to the Christmas music. Please play more of a variety of x-mas tunes, instead of the same songs 10 times a day, gets stale after awhile.

I was very disappointed to hear that Melissa & the morning team were not on. I loved their format & the music they played.....They made me laugh every morning on my way to work.

The only reason I am listening now is I am looking forward to the Christmas music. PLEASE PLEASE play more of a variety instead of the same x-mas songs over & over. There are so many different songs & artists yet you continue year after year to play the same ones, it's getting stale. I hope this year will be better than last.

I cannot believe that you didn't learn from the first mistake made by replacing Melissa with Whoppi - and ow you went ahead and did the exact mistake by bringing in someone who is sitting in LA telling us what is going on in Chicago. Perhaps the station wasn't in the top with the top age group, but you have to realize that the boomers are people to and we are just as important to listen to a radio station that gave us pleasure and Melissa and Risk did just that. I broke away from the LITE when Melissa was replaced the first time. I gave the new guy a chance, but he is doing nothing different than what Melissa and group was doing, nothing has changed, except this guy is BORING...... I now listen to WLS 94.7, at least it's music I want to hear and DJ's that make it interesting. Admit your marketing guys made a huge error, I hope Melissa and the team get with a station that will appreciate them.

Apparently you people at WLIT havn't learned your lesson! Do you think you have 19 year olds listing to the station in the morning? I think not! We have listened to the station for over 10 years and guess What - no more WLIT for us. Not even your Ccristmas music! Melissa if you read this tell us on your web site where you are going and we will be your first listener.

I come back to Chicago from being out of town for awhile and there is no Melissa in the morning. I missed her the first time you took her off the air. I miss Melissa again. It was like listening to a girlfriend first thing in the morning. Melissa and the team made me laugh, relax, and enjoy some good music. A nice way to start the morning. I will not return to LITE again. Your guy in the morning is boring and does not hit a good note. We already have enough male talking heads in the morning. I do not need another. Melissa is what Chicago needed in the morning, its too bad LITE does not understand that.

You lost me as a listener. I tried, but can't stand the new morning program. Bring Melissa back.

What were you thinking? Bad, BAD move WLIT!

I understand that Brant Miller is leaving WLS-94.7 FM - perhaps WLS will offer the spot to Melissa - it would be a major plus for 94.7......

Here we are 2010 and still no improvements to 93.9 (WLIT). I try to listen but turn it off. The humor and fun don't come naturally to the folks on there as it did when Melissa and her team were on! Sorry WLIT, you did lose a loyal listener.

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Lewis Lazare has written the Media Mix column for the Chicago Sun-Times for the past seven and a half years.

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