Acadiana Business

Wood out - yet again - at KSMB group

by Leslie Turk

A local radio station group's new owner's plans don't include General Manager Chuck Wood.

Radio veteran Chuck Wood, who returned to his old job with the local group of stations that includes FM stations 94.5 KSMB and 99.1 KXKC in mid-2009, has been let go by new owners Cumulus Media. Local radio sources say Wood's position was eliminated, likely part of a broader move by Cumulus to do away with general managers in smaller markets.

Citadel Broadcasting Corp. sold the local stations to Cumulus in September, about two years after bringing Wood back to run the local franchise, which also includes 104.7 KNEK and 95.5 KRRQ. While Wood's position may not fit into Cumulus' model, it was common knowledge in radio circles that the group of stations was performing well financially.

In 1998, Wood landed a job as sales manager with one of the KSMB group's chief competitors, what is now Townsquare Media, after being forced out by then-owner Powell Group and replaced by another local radio veteran, Mary Galyean. Powell later sold to Citadel.

In 2009, it was Galyean who was cut loose by Citadel to pave the way for Wood's return. She's since moved on to a job as communications business support supervisor with LUS Fiber, and most bets are on Wood landing on his feet very soon as well.

Reached on his cell phone Monday, Wood declined comment at this time.

The woman answering the phone at Cumulus headquarters in Atlanta referred our inquiry to the local Cumulus office. A message left there was not immediately returned.

Cumulus had confirmed in February that it was negotiating with Las Vegas-based Citadel in a deal valued at about $2.4 billion in cash and stock. On Sept. 16 the publicly traded media giant announced that it had closed the deal. With the completion of the Citadel acquisition, Cumulus said it became the largest pure-play radio broadcaster in the U.S., with more than 570 radio stations in 120 markets and a nationwide radio network serving more than 4,000 stations.