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

September 2010 Archives

To engage with loyal fans, the Chicago Bears have launched a new interactive Facebook Fan Zone application (www.facebook.com/ChicagoBears), where fans can participate in a variety of activities and earn points to show their passion.

The Bears currently have over 730,000 Facebook fans. When they click on the Chicago Bears "Fan Zone" tab, fans can follow team and player Twitter tweets on the "Motorola Bears Twitter Feed." They can place themselves next to a favorite Bears player in a "One City. One Team" photograph modeled after the team's 2010 brand ad campaign. Fans can also show team pride by choosing from three different Chicago Bears fan frames to place around an individual's Facebook picture.

Visitors to the Fan Zone also can upload pictures to the Chicagoland Toyota Fan of the Week. Each week a different fan will be featured as the Bears fan of the week on Facebook.

Points are accumulated for participating in each activity, and a leader board in the Fan Zone will tabulate score totals and feature the top Bears fans.

The Live Well Network -- the ABC-owned television station group's broadcast, online and wireless service for emerging digital channels in local markets -- is expanding its reach. Five new television affiliates -- all part of the Belo Corp. group of TV stations -- have signed on to air Live Well programming. The Belo stations are located in Dallas-Ft. Worth, St. Louis, New Orleans, Hampton-Norfolk and Charlotte.

The development of the Live Well Network was spearheaded by ABC-owned WLS-Channel 7 general manager Emily Barr. Among the new programs slated to debut on the Live Well Network next month is "Here's How-Right Now!" a fix-it program developed by WLS and shot at the WLS studios in Chicago. Until the addition of the Belo stations, Live Well programming was seen only on ABC-affiliated stations. More TV stations outside the ABC family are expected to join the Live Well Network in upcoming months.

More on the "it ain't over til it's over" front. Despite a long list of legitimate concerns expressed by both Intralot and Camelot Group in their respective protest letters regarding the Illinois Lottery private management bid process, it appears Gov. Pat Quinn and Illinois Lottery officials are hell bent on getting this private management contract signed pronto.

That rush to seal the deal suggests to some observers in the Intralot and Camelot camps that the Lottery has no intention of digging deeply into -- or perhaps even seriously considering -- the issues raised in the protest letters sent to the Illinois Department of Revenue last week. Indeed one source is reporting the Illinois Lottery hopes to sign the contract with the Northstar Lottery Group -- Quinn's choice to manage the Lottery -- on or around Oct. 13, just two weeks from now. No doubt Lottery officials want that contract signed before the Nov. 2 elections, lest the results somehow cause what Quinn has decreed to be put on hold or otherwise affected.

Meanwhile, the winning Northstar consortium -- comprised of Gtech, Scientific Games and Energy BBDO/Chicago -- doesn't appear to be the least bit concerned about the protests. The word from within the Northstar camp is that such protests are to be expected in the normal course of contracts being awarded in the lottery industry.

But others beg to different. In fact, one Intralot source said the group has never filed a formal protest in any lottery bid it has participated in since its United States operations launched in 2002. Until now.

Both Intralot and Camelot are supposed to get some response to their protests from the Illinois Department of Revenue momentarily. Should one or both of the protesting bidders not like what they hear from the department, both still have the option of a judicial review of their respective protests.

It ain't over til it's over.

Director Otto Arsenault has joined One at Optimus/Chicago. "One is unique because it's a production company built out of a post-production house," said Arsenault. "This is parallel to how I got my start in the industry and is one of the reasons this union has been such a great fit," added Arsenault.

Arsenault established his post-production roots while at Southern Illinois University through his work on "alt.news 26:46," a syndicated PBS program that won five regional Emmy Awards. After migrating to Los Angeles, he co-created PlasterCity Digital Post -- one of the first non-linear post-production studios in LA.

Arsenault's first project with One will be a TV spot for an international liquor brand through Markham Unlimited in Miami, Fla.

Paruch.jpgEffective Oct. 18, Brian Paruch will be the new sidekick and news anchor for Chicago's No. 1-rated morning drive radio show with Eric Ferguson and Kathy Hart on Bonneville International's hot adult contemporary WTMX-FM (101.9).

Paruch replaces Mark Suppelsa, who is leaving the station to concentrate on his job as an anchor at Tribune Co.-owned WGN-Channel 9. Suppelsa said he wanted to spend more time doing investigative reporting in addition to his anchor responsibilities for the station's early and late newscasts.

For Paruch, his new WTMX job is a dream opportunity. "I could not be more excited," said Paruch, 37, who is no stranger to his new full-time role on the "Eric & Kathy Show."

On numerous occasions Paruch had filled in for Suppelsa over the past two-and-a-half years. So Paruch already knows he feels at ease working with Ferguson and Hart. "From the first time I was on air with them, I just felt totally comfortable fitting into their conversation," said Paruch, who believes the show is so successful in part because "no one is trying too hard" to make it work.

In addition to filling in for Suppelsa on the "Eric and Kathy Show," Paruch had been a freelance host and sports updates talent for the past four-and-a-half years on CBS Radio Chicago's sports talk WSCR-AM. Though Paruch said he likes to talk about a lot of subjects, sports is a passion and another reason he's going to like his new job. "Eric (Ferguson) knows as much or more about sports than I do," said Paruch. In announcing Paruch's departure from the Score, program director Mitch Rosen called Paruch a "tremendous team player" who will be missed at the station.

Eric Ferguson said he likes Paruch's versatility. "Brian can handle a lot of different aspects of our show, and his familiarity with the program will make the transition from Mark to him relatively seamless," added Ferguson.

Paruch began his radio career in the early 1990's at WKQX-FM (101.1), and among various jobs he held during his eight years at the station was a gig as sidekick for Mancow Muller. Paruch also previously worked at a hard rock station known as WZZN-FM, which changed call letters and format to become the popular oldies station WLS-FM (94.7). Paruch was born in Blue Island, grew up in Roselle, and attended the University of Illinois.

Edelman has signed a definitive purchase agreement to acquire Vollmer Public Relations, the largest independent PR firm in the American southwest. Edelman plans to merge Vollmer's Austin, Dallas and New York operations into its own and will establish Vollmer's Houston headquarters as the hub for a new Edelman Southwest, serving Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Arkansas, New Mexico and Kansas. The new regional headquarters will be home to 50 Edelman employees and will exceed $9 million in annual revenue. "We aspire to be the leading firm in every market in which we do business, and Vollmer's considerable consumer marketing and corporate experience, well-known crisis management capability and stellar reputation will give us the chance to realize that aspiration in the southwestern United States," said Edelman CEO and president Richard Edelman.

Dawn Baskin has been promoted to new business development leader at DraftFCB/Chicago. In her new role, Baskin will become a member of the agency's senior leadership team and report to agency president Michael Fassnacht. Baskin began her career in New York at Lowe Advertising and MTV Networks before relocating to Chicago in 1995. She joined DraftFCB two years ago after serving as chief marketing officer at the Zipatoni agency. Additionally, DraftFCB/Chicago said Monday it has promoted Jennifer Neumann and Christine Lindquist to co-lead the agency's healthcare practice. For the past 15 years, Newmann and Lindquist had managed a variety of accounts at the agency, but healthcare has been a special interest of the duo.

Early today Southwest Airlines announced its intention to acquire low-fare competitor AirTran Airways. That news, understandably, wasn't a cause for great rejoicing around the offices of Cramer-Krasselt/Chicago, which has had the AirTran ad account for 12 years.

Though the acquisition deal is far from done and probably won't be finalized until sometime next year, it's unlikely Southwest will allow AirTran -- and all the benefits it will bring to the acquiring carrier -- to slip from its grasp, as did Frontier Airlines when Southwest tried to acquire it recently.

Southwest mostly likely will continue to rely on its longtime principal ad agency GSD&M Idea City in Austin, Tex. for its advertising needs, which are considerable. Southwest has been especially aggressive when it comes to advertising both its low fares and its "bags fly free" policy.

Should C-K lose its AirTran business, an agency spokesman said the agency's airline experience should enable it to aggressively compete for another airline account -- if a carrier should be looking for a new agency.

A bittersweet historical side note: Cramer-Krasselt once worked with Southwest. The C-K spokeswoman said the agency for eight years handled advertising in markets where Southwest was introducing new service.

Tom Dick & Harry Advertising/Chicago has been named social media agency of record for Fathead, a sports and entertainment graphic products firm. TD&H will work with Fathead's marketing team to create content and campaigns for the brand's social media channels. "We have a fun brand and a great line of products, so we are often approached by agencies that want to work with us," said Jake Mahoney, senior media manager at Fathead. "Tom Dick & Harry's special combination of sports experience, passion and social media savvy is what led us to a partnership with them," added Mahoney.

"Our sports knowledge and our experience with clients such as the Chicago Bulls, Fox Sports' Big Ten TV Network and others should serve us and Fathead well," said Stephen Para, digital director at TD&H.

03.JPG"Wheel of Fortune" fans will have a chance to audition for the game show when the Wheelmobile arrives at the Horseshoe Casino in Hammond, Ind. for events on Sept. 29 and 30. Hour-long audition events will take place each day at 6 p.m.; 7:30 p.m. and 9 p.m. at The Venue inside the casino. Audition applications will be available one hour before each show.

A random drawing will determine which participants will be invited on state to audition for "Wheel of Fortune." Participants must be over 21 and in possession of a valid, government-issued ID for check-in. Some 25 million people watch "Wheel of Fortune" every week. It airs at 6:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday on ABC-owned WLS-Channel 7 and on over 200 more stations nationwide.

Justin Craig, program director for the past 4 1/2 years at ESPN Radio's sports talk WMVP-AM (1000), is moving on to handle similar duties at the sports radio network's flagship New York station WEPN-AM (1050). Craig came to WMVP from ESPN's corporate headquarters in Bristol, Ct., where, among other things, he was involved in producing ESPN Radio's popular "Mike & Mike In the Morning" show.

Craig's departure leaves a key post vacant in the WMVP programming department. It is expected to take several weeks to fill the position. But one likely candidate for the job is Adam Delevitt, who has been assistant program director under Craig. Delevitt said Thursday that if he gets the job, he foresees no major overhaul of the current programming. His main goal, Delevitt said, is for WMVP to remain super competitive with WSCR.

It definitely ain't over. A Camelot Group spokesman confirmed to us this morning that it indeed filed a formal protest on Wednesday with the Illinois Department of Revenue regarding the process of selecting a private manager of the Illinois Lottery and Gov. Pat Quinn's selection of Northstar Lottery as the new private manager.

In a statement issued after the protest was filed, Camelot CEO Dianne Thompson said: "Camelot believes that the Department of Revenue's process for selecting the private manager breached the Lottery Law passed last year by the General Assembly, as well as competitive bid procedures. With our protest, we hope the State will recognize that a competitive bid process was not honored here and that only a truly competitive process can maximize the Lottery's long term value for the State of Illinois. We request that the State stay the selection of Northstar Lottery as private manager and reopen the bidding process and this time administer a bid process that is truly equitable and transparent."

Camelot's protest letter apparently goes into detail about several breaches it alleges occurred during the private management bid process, including the failure of the bidding process to create a competitive environment, the process being unevenly skewed toward the existing vendors of the lottery (including Gtech, Scientific Games and Energy BBDO/Chicago which comprise Northstar) and unequal access to information by bidders.

Meanwhile, within a matter of hours after delivery of Camelot's protest letter to the Illinois Department of Revenue, we're told copies of that letter, which is believed to run upwards of 25 pages, had somehow already made their way into the hands of Gtech executives at a national lottery convention now underway. And from Gtech, we're also advised, copies of the protest letter may inadvertently have made their way into the hands of others at the convention.

We're told the protests now formally filed by both losing bidders, Intralot and Camelot, will initially be reviewed by George Logan, an attorney in the Department of Revenue. If one or both of the protesting parties are not satisfied with action taken by him, they can request an additional judicial review by the Illinois state courts.

From what we've gleaned from both the Intralot and Camelot protests, both groups are serious about the issues they've raised in their respective protests regarding the private management bid process. Don't expect them to back off until they're fully satisfied they've gotten a serious and fair hearing.

Yes, it ain't over til it's over.

Locally-based broadcasting talent Mike North will have some local company on the national Fox Sports Radio Network. Effective Sept. 25, Fox Sports Radio will air a Saturday morning edition of "Stox 'n Jocks," which traces its roots back to sports/talk WSCR-AM (670), where it began in 2002. It is now heard on WSBC-AM (1240) weekdays.

The Fox Sports Radio edition of "Stox 'n Jocks" will be hosted by former NFL players turned professional traders Jon and Pete Najarian, along with their business partner Guy Adami. The show will air from 6 to 8 a.m. central time and will feature investment ideas, financial analysis and interviews, along with discussion of sports topics of the day.

Fox Sports Radio general manager Don Martin said of the new programming addition: "These three men are at the forefront of the financial industry, and with their knowledge and background in sports, they will provide our audience with a unique listening experience." Fox Sports Radio does not have a Chicago outlet, but it can be accessed online.

Like we said before, it ain't over til it's over. And it definitely ain't over. Sources say both Intralot and Camelot Group -- the two losing bidders for the Illinois Lottery private management contract -- have submitted formal protests to officials at the Illinois Department of Revenue over the bid process for the management contract.

Camelot, so far, has not confirmed to us submission of its protest, but sources say the group that runs the National Lottery in the United Kingdom had, among other things, some serious concerns about the way information it requested during the latter stages of the Illinois Lottery bid evaluation process was conveyed to the bidder.

At least one source familiar with developments said some information requested was actually provided to Camelot on Energy BBDO/Chicago letterhead. Energy BBDO/Chicago is the current ad agency of record for the lottery and, along with Gtech and Scientific Games, comprises the Northstar Lottery Group, which Gov. Pat Quinn announced last week was the winning bidder for the private management contract to run the Illinois Lottery. "Couldn't they have at least have sent out the information to Camelot on Lottery letterhead?" wondered one source.

Intralot's protest submitted late Tuesday reportedly centers on the scoring it received during the initial evaluation of its proposal made days after its bid was formally submitted in late July. The Intralot protest focuses in on the wide disparity in scoring among the disparate group of nine evaluators. The protest letter suggests the evaluators were not sufficiently instructed or trained to properly evaluate the bid proposals. This resulted in what Intralot calls "arbitrary" scoring of its proposal.

Intralot's protest goes in to detail about the very different way in which Evaluators No. 5, 8, and 9 scored different parts of the proposal to lend credence to what Intralot contends was an "arbitrary" scoring process. Evaluator No. 5 was Mireya Hurtado from the Illinois Department of Health. Evaluator No. 8 was Hans Zigmund, an economist with the Illinois Department of Revenue and Evaluator No. 9 was Jan Kostner, who heads up the Illinois Tourism Bureau.

Intralot, by the way, knows a thing or two about lodging protests about procurement processes in Illinois. Just days ago, Intralot succeeded in getting the Illinois Gaming Board to terminate a new contract it had awarded to Scientific Games for the data network and central computer system tied to the expected introduction of video gaming in Illinois. Intralot provided documentation to the Board to prove the state had miscalculated Intralot's bid for the contract. That contract will now have to be rebid.

So, as we said before, it ain't over til it's over. Especially in Illinois.

It could be bad news for Element 79/Chicago, which, understandably, hasn't quite been the same shop since PepsiCo and its Quaker Oats subsidiary decimated the agency's client roster several years ago by pulling a number of high-profile brands out of the agency in quick succession.

Now sources are reporting that Cricket Communications is launching an agency review. Cricket has been a big part of Element 79's business in recent years. Reached by phone, Cricket's Rich Mackey, senior director of consumer marketing, did nothing to dispel the notion a review has commenced. He simply told us he couldn't comment on anything related to Cricket's marketing or any reviews that might be underway.

Telecommunications firms, of course, are among the most fiercely competitive businesses operating in the United States. Many spend large sums to try and lure customers from their competitors.

Mackey referred us to Cricket spokesman Greg Lund, who basically echoed Mackey's comments. Secrecy, apparently, is a large part of the way Cricket conducts its business. Lund did confirm, however, that the Cricket ad account has been at Element 79 for six years.

Magnani Continuum Marketing/Chicago is expanding its footprint to the west. At the end of this month, the agency will open a west coast outpost in Manhattan Beach, Calif. Lisel Cherry has been tapped as general manager of the new Manhattan Beach office. The new role marks Cherry's second tour of duty with Magnani. She served as the shop's director of client services from 2001 to 2006, before becoming associate director for CME Group, the futures and options exchange. There she was responsible for CME Group's customer focus initiatives.

In her new post at Magnani, Cherry will manage client relationships, all marketing services and business development on the west coast. "Having moved out west for her family, the opportunity fell into place," said Justin Daab, managing partner and brand strategist for Magnani Continuum Marketing.

We previously said it ain't over until it's over. And from what we can tell, the controversy surrounding the private management contract bid process for the Illinois Lottery hasn't quieted down yet.

Bidder Intralot, which was dumped from contention soon after its bid was submitted in late July, is expected to submit a formal protest regarding the bid process as early as Wednesday. Sources say Camelot also will likely lodge a formal protest very soon. But when asked about the matter earlier today, a Camelot spokesman declined comment, saying he would get back to us. So far, he hasn't.

It's unclear at this juncture whether any formal protest would be able to derail the signing of contracts with winning bidder Northstar Lottery Group in about five weeks

Meanwhile, sources continue to tell us it remains a distinct possibility that Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan could take a look at how the private management bid process played out to determine if everything was handled in an appropriate fashion.

Illinois Lottery officials also continue to post more information about the bid process at www.IllinoisLottery.com, but sources say not all the information they were looking for has turned up at the website yet.

Tribune Co.-owned WGN-Channel 9's new Saturday and Sunday morning newscasts will be anchored by Sean Lewis. Meteorologist Mike Hamernik will handle weather segments. The live, one-hour newscasts launch on Oct. 2 and 3 from 6 to 7 a.m.

Lewis joined CLTV in March, 2007, and WGN in June 2008. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin--Milwaukee. Hamernik has been a member of the WGN weather team since 2005. He began his Chicago broadcast career in 2002 at CLTV. Hamernik studied meteorology at the University of Wisconsin--Madison.

Big Ten Video Photos2.jpgPerhaps you caught them on your way into work or the lunch hour. Ten oversized mascots showed up at various locations around Chicago earlier today to promote a new Big Ten Network program called "BIg Ten Icons." The program ranks the top 50 Big Ten athletes of all time. The show airs on Tuesday nights at 9 p.m. eastern time. The mascots roaming Chicago streets today represent several sports icons, including Kendall Gill, Joe Girardi, Jesse Owens, Glenn Rice, Michael Finley and BJ Armstrong. A video starring the aforementioned mascots/icons, called "Day in the Life of an Icon" can be viewed on the Big Ten Network Facebook page.

If you missed the mascots earlier today, they will be at the corner of State and Lake streets in the Loop from 4:30 to 7 p.m. today.

ABC-owned WLS-Channel 7 is partnering with the League of Women Voters and the Illinois Broadcasters Association to air two commercial-free debates prior to the November elections. "Good Morning America" co-anchor and ABC News chief political correspondent George Stephanopoulos will moderate a debate between Illinois senatorial candidates on Oct. 19. that will air on Channel 7 from 10:35 to 11:35 p.m.

WLS anchor/reporter Ron Magers will moderate a second debate between gubernatorial candidates on Oct. 20, that also will air from 10:35 to 11:35 p.m. In addition to the air times on Channel 7, both debates will air live on WLS digital channel 7.2 at 7 p.m. and stream live at www.abc7chicago.com. The debates will take place at the WLS-Channel 7 studios at 190 N. State St.

During both debates, a panel of journalists will pose questions to the candidates. For the debate featuring senatorial candidates, the panelists will include WLS political editor Charles Thomas, Better Government Association executive director Andy Shaw and Daily Herald political reporter Kerry Lester. The panel debate with gubernatorial candidates will include Shaw and Thomas, with a third panelist to be announced.

The National Pork Board has expanded the duties of its consumer branding agency Schafer Condon Carter/Chicago to include foodservice marketing and retail promotional advertising. "By consolidating these marketing efforts with Schafer Condon Carter, we'll be able to better identify and leverage synergies between our consumer brand work and our channel work," said Jarrod Sutton, vice-president, channel marketing for the National Pork Board. SCC's additional responsibilities will include strategic planning, advertising, public relations and promotional support. The National Port Board named SCC its consumer branding agency of record earlier this year following a review.

It ain't over til it's over. And from everything we've been hearing in the wake of Gov. Pat Quinn's decision Wednesday to award the Illinois Lottery private management contract to the Northstar Lottery Group, Quinn's choice -- and everything that led to it -- is being looked at very carefully by a lot of people who have had questions for weeks about how the bid process has played out.

Documents posted at www.IllinoisLottery.com have only raised more questions in the minds of several sources, who have been carefully analyzing what the data has revealed about the bid process. And more importantly, what it hasn't.

At least the answer to one big question about who actually selected the Illinois Lottery evaluation committee was immediately provided to us when we posed it this morning. Brian Hamer, head of the lllinois Department of Revenue, was responsible for picking the curious cross-section of state executives tasked with scoring the bids of three contenders for the Illinois Lottery private management contract.

The answer to a second question we posed, namely the actual identities of the evaluators listed only as "evaluator 1," "evaluator 2" and so on in the scoring document posted online, has not yet been provided, even as some observers wonder what credible credentials some of these evaluators brought to the table to qualify them to sit on the committee. A Lottery spokeswoman told us late Friday the earliest we could get an answer about the evaluator identities is Monday.

Another question hanging out there pertains to the political connections of some of the committee members. What would Illinois government be, after all, without its political connections.

At Wednesday's press conference, Quinn and Lottery acting superintend Jodie Winnett made it sound like a no-brainer to go with Northstar Lottery Group because it simply promised to generate more Lottery profits for the state over the next five years than did the other finalist, the Camelot Group. But as Winnett revealed at that press conference Wednesday, Northstar could have wiggle room when its comes to generating the monies it said it would in its management proposal.

Buried in the private management agreement, per Winnett, are clauses that allow the private manager to request arbitration if certain circumstances should arise that might legitimately preclude Northstar from reaching its revenue and profit goals. Asked what such a circumstance might be, Winnett said a new casino in Chicago could possibly push Northstar to seek to amend its contract with the state.

Don't be surprised if more surprises about this bid process begin to surface in the days and weeks to come. And before any binding contracts are signed in about six weeks, don't be surprised, sources tell us, if Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan is asked to take a look at how the bid process has unfolded.

In an editorial today, Springfield's State Journal Register, Illinois' oldest newspaper, perhaps best summed up the current sentiments of many who have been watching this private manager process play out. That editorial said in part: "The fact that Northstar is owned by the lottery's largest contractors -- Gtech, which makes lottery machines, Scientific Games, which prints instant tickets; and ad agency Energy BBDO/Chicago -- made us nervous. It still does, and we suspect we are not alone."

NPCA 1.JPGWe're sure it seemed a lovely concept in theory, but we're not so sure Young & Rubicam/Chicago's new ad campaign for the National Parks Conservation Association works very well in practice.

The centerpiece of the campaign is a newly-developed website, www.give2cents.org, where visitors can share their stories about our national parks and monuments, create a unique image from their words and make a donation to support the NPCA's work. In conjunction with this online effort, Y & R has developed posters and bus shelter boards of national park images created out of the actual stories submitted online. The campaign theme line is: "Your two cents can add up to more than just talk." Indeed it can -- and does in this instance -- add up to a lot of words as well.

Suffice it to say the finished posters and billboards are excessively wordy affairs that will require considerable effort to digest from any viewers who actually wish to read the tales. And as we all know, effort is something that a lot of people in this instant gratification world of ours aren't interested in expending, unless absolutely forced to do so. No matter how worthy the cause.

We also wish the Y& R creative team had found a way to make the images created from the verbiage -- such as grizzly bear with a fish in his mouth -- pop more vividly than they do in this word-based format

The new campaign marks the NPCA's first national effort since 2008.

Howard Draft - CAF Silver Medal.JPGHe's a veteran all right. But one who's not been nearly so visible or talkative in the Chicago market as he was several years ago, when Howard Draft was hyping a new template for ad agencies he masterminded via the merger of Draft and Foote, Cone & Belding. Now the Chicago Advertising Federation has seen fit to bestow its Silver Medal Lifetime Achievement Award on Howard Draft, officially identifying him as a distinguished member of the Chicago advertising community.

"Howard is a pioneer in the Chicago advertising community," said CAF president Anne Rago. "He is admired for consistently fine-tuning the agency model to provide clients with offerings that are right for the current times and the future as well," added Rago. Draft himself is the executive chairman of an ad agency with Chicago roots that date back to 1873. That would, of course, refer to the roots of the FCB part of the merged agency. The Draft agency that Howard Draft actually founded only dates back to 1978.

Recipients of the CAF's Silver Medal are chosen by a 24-member board who evaluate candidates based on attributes such as contributions to his/her company, creative ability, contributions to the general advancement of advertising, and contributions to the community. Past Silver Medal recipients include Keith Reinhard, Joe Sedelmaier, Bud Frankel and Rick Fizdale.

Howard Draft will receive the medal at a dinner in his honor on Nov. 11, at the Drake Hotel in Chicago.

KC Headshot 2008 008.jpgAttorney Karen Conti has been hired as a contributing legal expert at Fox-owned WFLD-Channel 32. The new deal formalizes what had been a more informal arrangement between WFLD and Conti for the past decade.

Going forward, Conti said she expects to appear twice a week on Channel 32's 9 p.m. flagship late news to discuss various stories from a legal perspective. She also expects to show up on WFLD's morning show "Good Day,Chicago." Conti is now part of a team that are attempting to boost ratings for WFLD's late news. The station is trying a newscast format that offers longer, more-in depth segments, often including extended discussions of certain news stories.

Conti and Greg Adamski, her legal partner and husband, also are in their fourth year of co-hosting "Legally Speaking" on news/talk WGN-AM (720). And Conti and Adamski are in their 20th year of practicing law together, as well as serving as adjunct law professors at the University of Illinois.

Gov. Pat Quinn will step to the podium at 3 p.m. today at the James R. Thompson State of Illinois Center to make a much-anticipated announcement about the private management contract for the Illinois Lottery. One of three options is possible. He could select the Northstar Lottery Group. He could go with the Camelot Group. Or Quinn could opt to start the process over and bid the contract again. Some believe the third option is the least likely, but no one has necessarily ruled out the possibility Quinn could ask for a do-over. Of the two remaining finalists, neither is a sure bet. And no matter which he selects, Quinn is still going to have to deal with all the questions that have been raised over the course of the several weeks this controversial bid process has played out. Stay tuned.

Oprah Winfrey wanted it to be big. But the talk diva's 25th and final season opener wasn't quite as big as she might have hoped for in the Nielsen overnight TV ratings.

Monday's premiere of the of "The Oprah Winfrey Show" actually fell short of topping the ratings both nationally and locally for Winfrey's penultimate 24th season opener last year, which featured an interview with singer Whitney Houston, much in the news at the time.

The 25th season opener Monday pulled a 7.8 national rating (9 million households), compared to an 8.0 (9.3 million) for the season debut in 2009. But as noted by spokeswoman for CBS, which distributes Winfrey's talk show nationally, Winfrey's national number may have been negatively affected by pre-emptions in some markets where United States Open tennis coverage was still in progress Monday afternoon. Altogether, Winfrey's national rating is based on data from 51metered markets.
Winfrey's national rating for Monday's show, though short of a record number, still bested her two nearest competitors -- Dr. Phil and Dr. Oz (both, interesting enough, Winfrey proteges) --by a whopping five ratings points, as both of them could do no better than 2.8 rating (3.25 million) nationally.

In Chicago, Winfrey's number for her 25th season opener -- an 8.9 (311,500 households) -- also fell short of a record rating, though it was notably better than her national rating for Monday's premiere. Last season's "Oprah" opener scored a 9.6 (336,000) rating in the Chicago market where the show originated 25 years ago.

1. WDRV-FM (97.1) Classic hits

2. WTMX-FM (101.9) Hot adult contemporary

3. WVAZ-FM (102.7) Urban adult contemporary

4. WGCI-FM (107.5) Urban contemporary

5. WXRT-FM (93.1) Adult rock

6. WUSN-FM (99.5) Country

7. WOJO-FM (105.1) Regional Mexican music

8. WBBM-FM (96.3) Top 40

9. WLIT-FM (93.9) Adult contemporary

9. WLS-FM (94.7) Oldies

The August Arbitron book released Friday made clear the ratings news is only getting better for the "Roe Conn with Richard Roeper Show" on news/talk WLS-AM (890). The program on the Citadel Broadcasting station catapulted into the top 10 afternoon drive programs in the market in the key 25 to 54-year-old demo, after languishing for many months many rungs further down in the ratings.

Some eight months ago WLS general manager Michael Damsky and his operations director Drew Hayes said their top priority was to revive the Roe Conn franchise -- a goal management appears to be handily accomplishing. But even as the Conn program is moving in the right direction, Damsky and Hayes still have issues to address at WLS-AM, which could do no better than a 22nd place finish overall in the August book. WLS's ranking was pulled down by weak ratings performance in the evening and on weekends, where the station is now tied for 30th in the rankings. But Damsky said he isn't overly concerned. "The media buyers make most of their ad buys during the key weekday time periods, and that's where we must be competitive," explained Damsky.

WLS-AM archrival news/talk WGN-AM (720) pretty much held steady in August in a tie for 14th place overall, though the daypart ratings breakdown indicates the Tribune Co. station took a huge hit in afternoon drive -- dropping from sixth place in July to 12th place in August. That drop is no doubt tied in part to the poor performance of the Chicago Cubs, whose games air on WGN. The ratings falloff could accelerate with the baseball season rapidly drawing to a close.

Perhaps the biggest surprise in the August book was CBS Radio Chicago's Top 40 WBBM-FM (96.3), which leaped from 19th place in July to 8th place in August in the 25 to 54 demo, which isn't even the station's target demo. WBBM-FM was No. 1 in August the 18 to 34 demo, which represents its core audience. CBS Radio Chicago market manager Rod Zimmerman said the station's playlist has been tweaked recently, but he thinks a lot of the station's newfound ratings strength simply has to do with the popularity of the music the station plays and its line-up of on-air personalities.

Otherwise, the August ratings book showed a lot of the familiar top stations still going strong. Bonneville's classic hits WDRV-FM (97.1) did leapfrog over its sibling perennial front runner WTMX-FM (101.9) to claim the No. 1 spot in the rankings. The regional Mexican music powerhouse WOJO-FM (105.1), which was at the top of the rankings for a while, seems to be fading just a bit. It wound up in seventh place in the August book in the 25 to 54-year-old demo.

NBC-owned WMAQ-Channel 5 is launching a Chicago Bears-focused blog called "Grizzly Detail." The blog will provide coverage of every Bears game and will focus on the six players and team coaches and managers who will be key in determining the team's fate this season: Jay Cutler; Brian Urlacher; Johnny Knox; Julius Peppers, Lovie Smith and Jerry Angelo.

Among those contributing to the blog will be WMAQ reporters Peggy Kusinski, Paula Faris, Daryl Hawks and Mike Adamle, as well as Chicago Sports writer Maggie Hendricks. Hall of Fame former Bear Dan Hampton will contribute videos each week. The blog will be supported by extensive on-air integration and social media tie-ins via Facebook and twitter.

PureCircle 1.pngIt hasn't been all joy and sweetness over at Euro RSCG/Chicago lately, but the agency is displaying some now in a new campaign for client PureCircle, the Oak Brook-based maker of stevia, a 100-percent natural sweetener. The campaign theme line is "We grow joy."

In each of two print executions we see products that use stevia as a sweetening agent popping out of the top of a stevia plant, In one instance the product is soy milk. In the other it's a cupcake topped with icing and a cherry. Aside from introducing readers to the joys of stevia, the ad campaign aims to introduce a new trust mark that consumers can look for on products to ascertain whether they have indeed been sweetened with stevia.

After 38 years client-agency consultancy Jones Lundin Beals is merging with Asia-based consultancy R3, creating what is being called the first-ever global consultancy aimed at helping marketers improve the value and performance of their agency relationships. R3:JLB will employ more than 30 consultants in Chicago, New York, Miami, Beijing, Singapore, Shanghai and Delhi. The company also has affiliate offices providing services in Europe, Latin America and Africa.

Three principals will lead the newly-created entity: David Beals, Goh Shu Fen and Greg Paull. Beals will serve as CEO of the company. "This move is driven by the changing nature of agency searches, compensation agreements and relationships," said Beals. "What happens in China needs to be connected with Chicago," added Beals.

Congrats to veteran Chicago publicist Noreen Heron Zautcke, whose PR firm Noreen Heron & Associates/Chicago is celebrating its 10th anniversary this month. Heron Zautcke opened her own agency after serving for five years as the top PR executive with the Hyatt Regency Chicago, where she planned and executed a number of major events, including the World's Largest Office Party, the Bud Bowl and the Pepsi Easter Fairy Tale Adventure. Heron Zautcke's PR roots are in the theater industry. She got her start doing public relations for the legendary, but now defunct Candlelight Dinner Playhouse, which for many years produced musical theater in southwest suburban Summit. Heron Zautcke continues to represent several major theater organizations, among them the Marriott Theatre and Drury Lane Theatre in Oak Brook. Altogether, Heron Zautcke and her firm have repped over 1,000 theatrical productions.

MomentsFindYourBeach.jpgFor the longest while, the Corona Extra advertising mindset centered on a beach -- ideally one that is wonderfully idyllic. But that long-held concept is about to, if not change, at least expand. A new spot from Cramer-Krasselt/Chicago set to break on Sunday includes footage of other inviting locales ranging from the mountains to a New York City rooftop. The new spot comes with a new tagline "Find Your Beach," a suggestion that a Corona "beach" can be anywhere one can successfully conjure that peaceful mindset associated for so long with the imported Mexican brew.

The music used in the new spot called "Moments" is a song called "The Secret Sun" by Grammy-winning songwriter Jesse Harris, who has worked with Norah Jones, among others.

Within 24 hours or so, Gov. Pat Quinn should be getting his recommendation from the Illinois Lottery evaluation committee (all of whom remain anonymous in this transparent private management bid process) regarding which of two finalist bidders -- Northstar Lottery Group and Camelot Group -- should become the first-ever private manager of the Illinois Lottery.

Whether or not Quinn realizes it yet, his expected selection of a winner days later could cause big problems for the governor, who is in a tough fight to retain his job in the November elections. The Illinois Lottery is an important generator of income for this state, and if he helps make a mess of its management, big trouble could ensue.

Many who have watched this private management bid process play out over the past several weeks believe it was nowhere near as transparent as the people who ran it keep trying to suggest it has been. And as was made clear during the Q & A portion of yesterday's public hearing, many people, including experts in the lottery world, don't understand why only three entities wound up submitting proposals by the deadline. Or why those three were quickly whittled to just the two finalists.

Sources repeatedly have told us one reason so few bidders finally stepped up to the plate was the onerous first draft of the private management agreement (PMA) that was distributed in advance of the bid deadline. In hindsight, some sources now suspect that first version of the PMA may have been made purposely onerous by its creators in order to discourage as many bidders as possible.

Certainly the last version of the PMA that Northstar and Camelot used to tailor their submissions to the Illinois Lottery evaluation committee was a vastly different version than the initial one issued before the bid deadline. One source who carefully word-checked the initial version of the PMA with the final version discovered that some 13,781 words had been added to the final document and another 7,017 words deleted. That level of verbiage adjustment suggests amendments to the PMA were anything but superficial.

Whatever the case, the Illinois Lottery has its two finalists, and perhaps that is all the Lottery and its anonymous evaluation team wanted to have to deal with all along. Certainly Illinois Lottery acting superintendent Jodie Winnett was at a loss to come up with a credible answer at Wednesday's public hearing when she was pointedly asked why so few bidders ultimately surfaced to contend for this groundbreaking private management contract to run the Illinois Lottery.

Neither of the presentations from Camelot and Northstar Lottery Group at the public hearing was what we'd call breathtaking. But of the two, we'd certainly say Camelot's was the smarter. Its presenters made clear that they would enter into a private management agreement beholden to no vendors that currently have contracts with the Illinois Lottery. Northstar, of course, could make no such claim, since its three principals -- Gtech, Scientific Games and Energy BDDO/Chicago -- all have existing contracts with the Illinois Lottery.

We also liked the way Camelot kept reiterating that it is a services and marketing company. And in the end, getting the Illinois Lottery where it needs to be as a generator of income for the state and as an entity that Illinois residents want to play is, most definitely, a marketing challenge that must be met.

The governor's representative at Wednesday's public hearing was allowed to ask questions. But the mundane nature of the couple of questions he lobbed at the two bidders indicated Quinn won't be getting much useful feedback from his minion at the public hearing.

Quinn is going to have look at the whole way this private manager bid process has played out and ask himself the tough question: Is he satisfied with the process and the recommendation made to him? If so, he can name a private manager. If not, well, he could ask that the whole process be repeated -- this time with new people overseeing it and a new, more transparent effort to make sure the whole bid process is totally transparent.

This much is known: Quinn's Sept. 15 decision date fast approaches.

The Northstar Lottery Group and the Camelot Group made their respective cases Wednesday for why each bidder believes it is best qualified to become the first-ever private manager of the Illinois Lottery. Presentations from the two finalists came during a public hearing just one week before Gov. Pat Quinn is to select one of the two bidders to manage the Lottery. His decision, if he opts to make one, will be based largely on a recommendation from an Illinois Lottery evaluation committee that has been analyzing the bids for the past several weeks. The committee is expected to submit its recommendation to Quinn on Friday.

Illinois Lottery acting superintendent Jodie Winnett set the stage for the hearing, calling the private management contract a breakthrough deal. "This is the first time a deal of this nature has been struck in the United States. . .all eyes are on Illinois," said Winnett.

The entire private management bid process, however, has come under intense media scrutiny in recent days, as questions have been raised about why only three entities from around the world ultimately submitted bids for the private management contract and why one of those, Intralot, was immediately dropped from contention -- leaving just Northstar and Camelot.

Questions also have focused on the Northstar consortium itself, comprised of three vendors that already work with the Illinois Lottery: Gtech, Scientific Games and Energy BBD0/Chicago. Respectively they supply technology, games and advertising to the Illinois Lottery. These vendors' close ties to the Lottery have left some observers wondering whether it would be prudent for the Northstar consortium to wind up, in effect, managing themselves. That nagging question was never addressed by Northstar representatives or by Winnett at Wednesday's public hearing.

Perhaps to drive home a major point of differentiation from Northstar, Camelot, which has managed the United Kingdom National Lottery for the past 16 years, repeatedly pointed out it is "vendor agnostic," meaning it is beholden to none of the vendors that currently work with the Illinois Lottery. "We can start from scratch bidding contracts," noted Camelot CEO Dianne Thompson.

Northstar's presentation was perhaps most notable for the questions it raised about the current marketing of the lottery by one of its consortium members, Energy BBDO, the current ad agency of record for the Illinois Lottery. Northstar's own research indicates one of the Illinois Lottery's big problems is the public's low awareness of the games available to play. In her remarks at the hearing, Energy BBDO CEO Tonise Paul said Northstar would take a new marketing tack to emphasize the fun, positive aspects of playing lottery games regularly. The advertising tagline she introduced was "Possibilities. Every Day."

Camelot was surprisingly blunt about problems the Illinois Lottery must address. Camelot Illinois CEO Jeff Perlee said the Illinois Lottery has too many of its retailers concentrated in low-income neighborhoods, a situation that would seem to encourage lottery playing among those who can least afford it. Perlee even went so far as to call the Illinois Lottery "one of the most regressive" in the United States.

In the U.K., Camelot has successfully focused on attracting more affluent players and has introduced a loyalty program to encourage more frequent participation. Smart marketing, Camelot executives said, has helped the company get 72 percent of United Kingdom residents to play the Lottery, while the best Illinois has done is 49 percent participation.

Quinn is to announce the winner of the private management contract on Sept. 15.

Multichannel webcaster AccuRadio.com has brought on board veteran urban radio programmer Barbara Prieto to program and market AccuRadio R & B, the company's new selection of urban and R & B music. Prieto's previous experience includes a stint at Chicago's WGCI-FM (107.5), where she was music director and assistant program director. "I am excited to bring my music and programming skills to Internet radio," said Prieto, adding "it's a great opportunity to break new music and give exposure to deserving talent." AccuRadio R & B features a dozen different, personalizable channels of urban music. This includes three new channels conceived and developed by Prieto: "Slow Jams;" "The Step Channel," and "Michael Jackson & Friends."

Colossal Squid Industries/Chicago has added two senior account service executives. Christina Downey has joined the firm as account director, a new position reporting to Colossal Squid co-founders Patrick Berry and Steve Slivka. Downey comes to CS from Alcone Marketing, where she served as an account director on brands such as Laughing Cow cheese, Kaukauna and Zatarain's. Sandy Jachs also has joined the agency as account director. Jachs will lead account teams on several brands, including Alberto Culver's Tresemme and Nexxus brands. Previously Jachs was an account director at Wirestone and a client director at JWT/Chicago.

Colossal Squid has been steadily expanding in recent months. "In the past nine months we have tripled in facility space and grown from a dozen agency veterans to 50 talented creatives, producers, developers and planners," said Berry.

After a review, Singha beer has tapped Gertrude Inc./Chicago as its ad agency of record in the United States. In addition, Gertrude will spearhead global initiatives for the Thai brew. Gertrude will develop a marketing campaign aimed at premium beer drinkers. "Gertrude is proud to be working with such a highly-regarded premium brand that continues building momentum in North America," said Gertrude founder and chief creative officer Otis D. Gibson. Gertrude Inc. is expected to break its first work for the beer next month.

It's official. Lou Canellis has been named principal sports anchor of Fox-owned WFLD-Channel 32's flagship 9 p.m. newscast. He replaces Corey McPherrin, who moved last month to the station's early morning show "Good Day Chicago" along with former late news contributing anchor and reporter Anna Davlantes. In his new role, Canellis will anchor the sports report Sunday through Thursday on WFLD's late news and also host "The Final Word," WFLD's Sunday Chicago Bears wrap-up program. WFLD also said Tuesday that Bears player Brian Urlacher has signed on as a analyst who will appear with Canellis on "The Final Word."

Fewer than 24 hours from now the two entities left in the running for Illinois Lottery private management contract -- Northstar Lottery Group and Camelot Group -- will formally unveil their game plans for managing the Lottery at a public hearing. As that hearing approaches, the two groups look to be taking vastly different approaches to managing their respective efforts to win the Lottery private management contract.

Northstar, whose principals include Gtech, Scientific Games and Energy BBDO/Chicago, has pretty much stayed silent, letting others speculate about what it is trying to do in the bid process and how it is going about doing it. Still red flags were raised about the Northstar bid almost from the moment the group made the surprise announcement that it had been formed just hours before the deadline for submitting bids in late July. Since then, observers have repeatedly wondered how three vendors that already supply significant services to the Illinois Lottery, including technology, games and advertising, could turn around and then manage themselves. It's a question, so far, that Northstar has refused to address publicly. It could be forced to do so at tomorrow's public hearing.

Meanwhile, Camelot Group, believed to be the major underdog, appears to be mounting a last-minute push to gain some momentum -- even though observers question some of its tactics. Last Friday, Camelot Group issued a press release that laid out key components of its bid for the Lottery private management contract, including the formation of an Illinois Lottery Foundation that would be funded with 10 percent of Camelot's "profits" from the Illinois Lottery up to a maximum of $35 million. Those Foundation monies would be used to award grants to education programs and organizations statewide. The Camelot bid also apparently includes new ways to broaden the player base and launch the Lottery on the Internet.

Though some might argue Camelot's press release was an attempt to make its bid more transparent, the effort raised eyebrows among veteran lottery experts who maintain the bid process confidentiality rules forbid entities in the running for a state contract to go public in such a fashion with details about their bids.

That concern aside, Camelot Group also appeared to get a boost this morning from four local diversity and inclusion groups who held a joint press conference to announce their support for the the Camelot Group bid. Those groups include the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, the Women's Business Development Center, the Minority Supplier Business Development Center and the Chatham Business Association.

Even as the press conference was unfolding, sources were voicing suspicions Camelot had somehow managed to draw these groups into its camp and push them onto a public stage to proclaim their support for Camelot's bid on the eve of the public hearing. "Unbelievably blatant manipulation" was the way one source characterized today's press conference. Even more curiously, a public relations spokesman for the press conference told us he had been contracted by a third party to handle press for today's event, but when pressed, he refused to identify the third party.

We soon will know how Northstar and Camelot intend to make their case to the public. What we most likely won't know is which of the two groups gets recommended to Gov. Pat Quinn by executives handling the bid process for the Lottery. Quinn is supposed to select a private manager on or before Sept. 15.

The whole bid process that has unfolded over the past several weeks has come under intense scrutiny in the media in recent days, and the pressure on Quinn to make the right decision is great. Given all the questions that have been raised about the bid process and the remaining contenders, some observers are now saying Quinn might be smart to throw out everything and start again.

In a matter of days, we'll know what Quinn has decided.

Erik Bradley has been named assistant program director/music director at CBS Radio Chicago's adult contemporary WCFS-FM (105.9) effective immediately. In addition, Bradley will continue to work as assistant program director and music director for CBS Radio Chicago's Top 40 WBBM-FM (96.3), a title he has held dating back to 1993. "When you think of Chicago radio, there is always one name that comes to mind -- Erik Bradley," said Jim Ryan, WCFS program director. "His knowledge of the Chicago audience is unparalleled; his relationships in the music community are unrivaled," added Ryan, who came on board at WCFS last spring to help boost ratings. "I'm thrilled to be gaining the invaluable experience of working with Fresh and am extremely confident that the team Jim is assembling will take the station to new highs," said Bradley.

Oh how the plot thickens. With a week to go until the public hearing on the Illinois Lottery's private management contract bid process, it is becoming increasingly clear that Gov. Pat Quinn -- and only Quinn -- has the power to determine how this bid process plays out.

As reported in earlier postings, Intralot has tried -- so far without success -- to obtain information about how it was scored by the evaluation committee just prior to being abruptly dropped from contention for the Illinois Lottery private management contract in early August. Sources say Intralot could lodge a formal protest about the matter, but that could apparently only be done after Quinn presumably selects a private manager for the Lottery on Sept. 15.

Intralot is also in the process of comparing the final version of the private management agreement (PMA) with an earlier version that was first issued to potential bidders for the contract. The PMA sets out the terms under which a private manager would operate the Lottery. The final version of the PMA is said to be materially different than that much earlier version. The final version also is believed to include much less onerous terms than did the early version. That means the private management contract would be much more attractive -- and potentially lucrative -- to whichever bidder is awarded the contract.

Two groups -- Northstar Lottery Group and the Camelot Group -- remain in contention for the Lottery private management contract. Northstar principals include three groups that are major vendors to the Illinois Lottery: Gtech provides technology; Scientific Games provides the Lottery games and Energy BBDO/Chicago handles advertising. Camelot Group oversees the United Kingdom Lottery. The big question Quinn will have to confront when he makes a decision about the private management contract is whether it is wise for the Lottery to be managed by a consortium of entities that are already supplying key services to it.

As the Sept. 15 date draws nearer and the bidding process gains a higher profile in other media outlets, sources say Illinois gubernatorial candidate and Quinn opponent Bill Brady could be preparing to enter the fray and make a statement about the private management contract bid process. But Illinois Senate president John Cullerton, who helped mastermind the legislation that prompted bidding for a Lottery private management contract, is keeping his thoughts to himself, at least for now. "The Senate president is keeping track of what has taken place, but since this is an ongoing process, it would not be appropriate to comment," said a Cullerton spokesman Tuesday.

Meanwhile, the Illinois Lottery has released an agenda for the public hearing on Sept. 8. Northstar and Camelot will each have an hour to present their respective plans for managing the Lottery. Some 90 minutes will then be given over to Q & A and comment.

Walt Riker, longtime top public relations honcho at Oak Brook-based burger behemoth McDonald's, said Wednesday he has decided to retire after 17 years with the company. "McDonald's is the greatest brand on the planet. However, I must make the decisions that are right for me and my family," said Riker in a statement.

Riker said the McDonald's media relations team will now report to Bridget Coffing. "She has true global expertise, and in-depth experience in marketing, nutrition, global events such as the Olympics and the World Cup, and a passion for Ronald McDonald House Charities," Riker said. The plan is to merge McDonald's global public relations unit with the media relations team to form one new entity called the external communications department.

Assistant program director Tracy Slutzkin has been promoted to program director at Citadel Broadcasting's news/talk WLS-AM (890), effective immediately. In announcing her promotion Wednesday, WLS-AM general manager Michael Damsky said Slutzkin's new job is "merely a reflection of the role she has played at our station for the last few months." Operations director Drew Hayes had been handling many of the PD responsibilities since he came to WLS-AM earlier this year.

Slutzkin had overseen much of the day-to-day operations at WLS -- helping with guest bookings and lining up other contributors. Damsky also indicated Slutzkin was a key player in developing a strategy to revitalize the station that has been implemented in stages since the beginning of the year. "She was particularly instrumental in the decision to hire Richard Roeper," said Damsky. Sun-Times columnist Roeper became a co-host of Roe Conn's afternoon drive show in April. Slutzkin is in her second stint at WLS-AM. She started as an intern and eventually became an executive producer of WLS's morning drive show with Don Wade and Roma. Slutzkin will now report to Drew Hayes.

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About the blogger

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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