WMU News

Pientka is next WMUK general manager

Dec. 13, 1999

KALAMAZOO -- Floyd Pientka has been named the new general manager of WMUK, Western Michigan University's public radio station.

Pientka, whose appointment is effective Jan. 1, replaces Garrard Macleod, who will retire Dec. 31 after 40 years of service and 30 years as general manager of WMUK. The station is a charter member of National Public Radio, serving all of Southwest Michigan at 102.1 FM.

WMUK's program director since 1993, Pientka's voice is well known to West Michigan audiences for his work and on-air presence during regular classical music programming and during the station's twice-yearly fund-raising events. As program director, he is responsible for the tone and content of the station's program mix and he supervises the announcers and producers who implement the program schedule.

According Dr. Timothy Light, WMU provost and vice president for academic affairs, Pientka brings both a wealth of experience and a commitment to the station's current mission to his new role as manager of WMUK and its 12-person staff.

"When considering this appointment, I made calls to people around the country and talked with many professionals in the field, including the president of the NPR," Light says. "Everybody said the same thing: WMUK's focus is exactly right and even ahead of the curve for public radio stations. With changes in the satellite technology and the potential for direct transmission of national feeds to listeners, public radio stations need to focus on local programming and that's exactly what WMUK has been doing. Under Floyd's leadership, I am confident that effort will continue."

Pientka first joined the station in 1979 as an announcer and he was later named operations manager. He left the station briefly in 1983 for a stint at a Philadelphia public radio station, but returned to WMUK the following year as an announcer. He resumed his role as operations manager at WMUK in 1985 and he held that post until being named program director.

A Milwaukee native, Pientka earned a music and creative writing degree in 1970 from Lawrence University in Appleton, Wis., and worked as a writer and musician before launching his public radio career. He also earned a master's degree in music performance (piano) from WMU in 1982. He lives with his family in Kalamazoo.

Media contact: Cheryl Roland, 616 387-8400, cheryl.roland@wmich.edu

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