WLUW 88.7 FM
City Chicago, IL
Broadcast area Far Northside of Chicago, IL and Evanston, IL
Branding Chicago Sound Alliance
Frequency 88.7 MHz
Format Indie Music, Community
ERP 100 Watts
HAAT 70 meters
Class A
Owner Loyola University Chicago
Website Wluw.org

WLUW is a college radio station owned and operated by Loyola University Chicago, serving Chicago, Illinois and its northern suburbs. WLUW was founded by Jim Wagner and Michael Russo in the 1970s and they ran the station until Loyola University offered more funding and support. In the 1980s the station was guided by General Manager Wayne Magdziarz and into the mid-1990s by Tony Compton, Jim Lemon and various student program directors including Taylor O'Malley, Anna Consalvo, Jennifer Prietz Marszalek and Jeff Grossman, with ongoing support from Dr. Sammy R. Danna, Professor of Communication at Loyola.

Formerly known as "The Hitline", then moving to "High Energy 88-7 FM" in the late 1980s, then simply known as "Energy 88-7". In these years the station provided valuable real world experience running a robust schedule of music, news, sports and community service programming. In the mid-1990s the station changed radio formats to 88.7 Listener Supported Community Radio. Loyola University Chicago ceased funding WLUW in 2002, turning over operational control of the station to WBEZ. During this period, WLUW was known as "Independent Community Radio" and feature an eclectic selection of music, specialty music shows, and independent talk programming, including Democracy Now. WLUW had two full-time staffers (Craig Kois was Station Manager and Shawn Campbell Program Director) and a volunteer staff of nearly 200 during the years 2002 to 2007. Through much effort by the staff and WBEZ, WLUW became financially independent by 2007. During this period, WLUW was known for its Record Fairs. Two were held each year; one a stand-alone event in April, and one at the Pitchfork Music Festival (formerly the Intonation Music Festival).

On July 13, 2007, an article "Back To School"[1] in the Chicago Sun-Times, revealed that Loyola terminated its relationship with WBEZ and was to take back control of the station in June 2008.[2] The future of the station's programming was uncertain at this point, as reported in Time Out Chicago,[3] and Chicagoist.[4] Loyola also posted.[5][6] In July 2007, both Kois and Campbell were relieved from their positions by WBEZ, although who directed that move is disputed. WBEZ employee Kristina Stevens ran the station from that time until Loyola took over the station July 1, 2008.

Before and after the takeover, some volunteers, including former Program Director Shawn Campbell, left the station to form competitor the Chicago Independent Radio Project (CHIRP). The volunteers who had organized the record fairs took them with to benefit CHIRP.[7]

Stevens continued to run the station for Loyola from July 2008 to January 2009. In January 2009, WLUW hired a new, permanent station manager, Danielle Basci. In the fall of 2009, WLUW moved its headquarters from Damen Hall on the Lake Shore Campus to the Terry Student Center located downtown on E. Pearson St. at the Water Tower Campus. Now with more students and less community members, the sound has changed somewhat, but still is largely the same as during Kois and Campbell's tenure from 2002-07.

While most of WLUW's current programming is an independent radio format with various DJs, there are many community, genre, news and specialty shows, including:

Previous format

In the 1980s through the mid-1990s, the station had a contemporary hit and dance music radio format (High Energy 88-7 FM and then Energy 88-7 FM), modeled after commercial radio stations such as B-96 in Chicago, with a full staff of student disc jockeys and news anchors/reporters. During this period, WLUW broadcast from the Loyola Water Tower Campus Communication building at 26 E. Pearson in Chicago.

Many notables from that era were Station Manager, morning man, and "Super CFL" Creator Jym Geraci, Denise Jerger, Wayne Magdziarz, Sue Cavi, SJ Peters, Jim Lemon, Art Therios, Tom Gaines, Ed Varga, Joe Weiss, Lorraine Kleba, Tim Garrity, Vince Parisi, Chris Kerr, Joe Blaney, Patty Sands, Bobby Brady (Rob Creighton), Tony Compton, Billy Levere, Steve Burrell, P J Bozak, Griff Madigan (whose father was the then Vice President of the Chicago Tribune), Jim Domo (Jim Domalgowski), Todd Jackson, Bill Rancic of "The Apprentice" fame, Karen Karas, Alan Cox, Jerry Riles, Jeff Andrews (Grossman as listed above), Katherine Bailey, Adam Wilde, J R Rizzo, and Keith Jeffries (Keith Forshaw).

In the early 1990s, WLUW attracted the attention of a few major recording artists who sat down for on-air interviews at the Pearson street studio. Chris Kerr visited with the Pet Shop Boys, while Tim Garrity interviewed Curt Smith from Tears for Fears, Erasure, The Information Society, as well Donny Osmond, who was making a come back with his hit single "Soldier of Love." These interviews were highlighted in the Summer and Winter 1990 editions of Radio Chicago Magazine, which further enhanced WLUW's reputation as an influential college radio station in the Chicago market.

Many of its alumni went on to professional broadcasting careers, including:


  1. "Chicago | Chicago : News : Politics : Things To Do : Sports". Suntimes.com. Retrieved 2015-04-23.
  2. Joravsky, Ben. "Picking Up Its Marbles | The Arts". Chicagoreader.com. Retrieved 2015-04-23.
  3. Jocelyn Geboy (2007-07-17). "Wluw: Wtf?". Chicagoist.com. Retrieved 2015-04-23.
  4. "Record Chirp - Gapers Block Chicago". Gapersblock.com. 2008-03-20. Retrieved 2015-04-23.
  5. "Labor Express". Laborexpress.org. Retrieved 2015-04-23.
  6. "Brian Wheeler | The Official Site Of The Portland Trail Blazers". Nba.com. Retrieved 2015-04-23.
  7. "eLoyalty Debuts Industry's First Internet Broadcast Channel Dedicated to Customer Loyalty". PRNewswire. PRNewswire.

External links

Coordinates: 42°00′04″N 87°39′36″W / 42.001°N 87.660°W / 42.001; -87.660

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