The board of directors of WGTS 91.9, named Douglas K. Walker interim general manager, effective Thursday, January 17, 2013. Walker’s appointment comes in the wake of the death of vice president and general manager John Konrad on January 2.
“We hired Doug to make sure the station's ministry continues in a strong and stable manner while the search for the next general manager is conducted,” said chair of WGTS board, Rob Vandeman. “Doug has great managerial experience, as well as a long and positive history with WGTS as both a volunteer and a board member, and the radio station staff is very comfortable with how he fits the ministry's profile.”
Walker’s prior experience includes 12 years at the National Education Association (NEA), the nation’s largest professional employee organization. As an executive in NEA’s interactive media department, he oversaw a staff of 24 and the development, design, production, and editorial direction of five magazines, multiple websites, and social media properties. From 2007-2012, he served as editor of the association’s flagship publication, the NEA Today, one of the top 15 circulation magazines in the country.
Additionally, Walker served as public affairs director for the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment Standards Administration. He went to the Labor Department from the Democratic National Committee where, as communications director, he helped develop and promulgate party message during the 1998 mid-term elections and the impeachment and trial of President Clinton. Prior to that, he served as speechwriter, deputy chief of staff, and then director of communications at the U.S. Office of Personnel Management. He has also worked on Capitol Hill and for the Chicago Public Schools.
An alumnus of Columbia Union College, WAU’s forerunner, Walker was a student control board operator and announcer through much of the 1980s. In the late 1990s, he volunteered as a program host, and served on the WGTS board of directors during the station’s transition from classical music to its current contemporary Christian music format after which, under Konrad’s leadership, the station doubled its coverage area, and increased weekly listenership from 10,000 to over 600,000.
Walker also worked for a year on the management team of sister station, WAUS-FM, at Andrews University in Berrien Springs, MI, and as a desk assistant in the newsroom at WRC-TV in Washington, D.C.
A native of Washington, D.C., Walker earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in communications from Howard University, and completed the Program for Senior Executive Fellows at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government.
Founded in 1957, WGTS is owned and operated by Washington Adventist University, a higher education institution of the Columbia Union Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. The station ranks among the top 10 in the Washington, D.C. market.