Smiley & West lands on two Chicago stations; town hall planned with Amy Goodman

Two commercial radio stations in Chicago have picked up the weekly Smiley & West show after it was dropped from WBEZ, the city’s public radio news outlet. WCPT, a progressive talk station, began airing the show Sunday, Nov. 4 at 3 p.m. and will add it to its three FM stations starting in January. It also picked up The Tavis Smiley Show for its weekend lineup. WVON-AM, which targets an African-American audience, will debut Smiley & West Saturday at 11 a.m.

WBEZ canceled the show hosted by author and broadcast host Tavis Smiley and activist and critic Cornel West last month, citing a drop in audience.

Carole Nolan, led WBEZ’s bid for independence

Carole Nolan, who founded WBEZ-FM in Chicago at a time when few women held top management jobs in public broadcasting, died July 5 of complications from muscular sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease. She was 80. In 1971, as director of telecommunications and broadcasting for the Chicago Public Schools, Nolan asked to take over management of the Chicago Board of Education’s radio station. “She began a complete overhaul that reinvented WBEZ,” said former WBEZ spokesperson Merillee Clark Redmond in the Chicago Tribune. “She took great risks and was creative as she hired staff who would develop new programming and yet not neglect the Board of Education’s desire for educational programs.”

Nolan secured $100,000 for a new transmitter and antenna, and aid from CPB.