Legendary Programming Exec Bill Tanner Dies


MIAMI — He was part of the legendary team that made Y-100 one of America’s most successful FM Top 40 stations in the 1970s. Later, he would propel Power 96 to the top of the ratings as a Latino-focused dance-fueled alternative to his former station.

In the 1990s, he would pivot by becoming one of the nation’s most respected Hispanic radio programming executives. But, he also had his challenges, with negative press nearly costing him his job some 30 years ago and a botched format change at WASH-FM in Washington, D.C., a career low point.

Today, the radio industry is coming together to mourn Bill Tanner, the EVP/Programming at Birmingham, Ala.-based SummitMedia.

RBR+TVBR OBSERVATION: Editor-in-Chief Adam R Jacobson grew up listening to “Tanner in the Morning.” He later spent decades interviewing Tanner for R&R and Hispanic Market Weekly, maintaining a close professional relationship across three decades. He shares his thoughts below.

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