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Meet the New Guys

By Krissy Rushing on Jan 6, 2017 12:40:49 PM

Brett_Patram.pngIt's a new year, and the Telos Alliance has added two new members to its growing family. We welcome Brett Patram, new Support Engineer, and Dave Collins, US Sales Manager for Omnia Audio. Brett has been working actively in the Cleveland radio market as an engineer for the past eight years. He was the Director of Engineering for Salem Media Group Cleveland for the past six years before joining the Telos Alliance. He is also the current Vice Chair for the local Society of Broadcast Engineers chapter 70.

Dave is originally from Philadelphia, and has been in radio, working as a program director, on-air host, and technical guy, for the last 15 years. Most recently, he worked at a station group in Lebanon, New Hampshire, did the ski and snowboard reports for a network of stations, and was the voice of Dartmouth Sports Network. Dave has engineered thousands of remote broadcasts, including live play-by-play sports, debates, interviews, and live music concerts. Get to know Brett and Dave! 


Brett Patram, Support Engineer

How did you get interested in Radio? 
My interest started growing as I was younger. The unknown technical on-goings of a radio station were a mystery that I very much wanted to figure out. I'm glad I did, it was the right choice for me.

What is your favorite local radio station? 
WCSB from Cleveland State University or WRUW from Case Western University. These two stations provide the most unique programming I have heard in the Cleveland area. The students behind most of these shows put in a great effort and makes for interesting listening. Never heard anything twice yet on either of these stations!

When you are listening to the radio, what song do you always turn off?
Any of that overplayed pop music. You know what I'm talking about, those songs that get played every hour until you despise it and never want to hear it again.
What do you turn up?
I'm always looking for variety. I try to listen to something different if I have the chance. Thus my interest in college radio.

What's your favorite news program? 
The Diane Rehm Show. Unfortunately she just recently retired! 

What attracted you to the Telos Alliance? 
So many positive things to say here. This company is simply "pro radio." Anything for the good of radio.  I have seen how well they treat their customers by being one myself over the years. I was always impressed with the active and embedded R&D being done in several key areas of tech. Telos is developing the future of radio technology right here. I wanted to be involved with a company that values the medium as much as I do.

What do you see as the biggest challenge facing radio broadcasters in the industry today? 
Retaining listeners will continue to be the biggest challenge. So much hinges on the audience actually existing and being responsive to the programming. Radio has the tools it needs to bring their audience back, it just needs to use them correctly. The smaller station ownership groups will be able to do this easier as they are more involved on the community level. Radio has to speak to its listeners in creative and captivating ways. 

"So much hinges on the audience actually existing and being responsive to the programming. Radio has the tools it needs to bring their audience back, it just needs to use them correctly."—Brett Patram

When you aren't working, you're...
Flying kites at Edgewater Park in the summer or walking around in the Metro Parks. In the winter time, reading books, repairing broken electronics, generally trying to stay warm!

What's your favorite sports team? 
Cleveland Monsters!

Dave Collins, US Sales Manager for Omnia Audio

What is your defining moment in radio? The moment where you said, 'I have to be a part of that'?
I've had many moments with the help of many colleagues. My first hands-on experience was in 1999. I started an internship at 1,000-watt AM station 1490-WBCB in Levittown, PA. I was engineering games, hosting a weekend overnight shift, you name it. I basically lived there. After about four months, my PD said to me, "Great job!  I was paying you nothin', now I'll pay you next to nothin,'" which was minimum wage. I've had opportunities to call Little League Championship games and State Championships in both Pennsylvania and New Jersey for many different sports, and was the Operations Manager for over three years at AAA-hybrid station 97-7 ACK-FM in Nantucket.dave_collins.jpg
What is your favorite local radio station?
I'm a huge fan of the "AAA" format, especially the rare cuts. I'm probably one of only a handful of people that owns an HD radio, three in fact. When I first got near Cleveland, I was scanning the dial, and found 102.1-WDOK HD-2, The Coffee Shop. It's a great blend of newer, softer alternative, and deeper cuts from classic rock/hits artists and bands. 100.7-WMMS, just because it's legendary, and rocks, not to mention it broadcasts the Cavs and Indians. Also, I have a little soul in me so 93.1-WZAK is a great change of pace on the weekends. And, since I was brainwashed (thankfully of sorts), I'll flip over to Magic 105.7 from time to time. If I want to find out what's really going on in Cleveland/Akron, I'll turn on 100.1-WNIR...Live and local talk even on weekends.
When you are listening to the radio, what song do you turn off? 
Any 80's Hairband. Cheese may be good on a sandwich, but not on the radio for me. And Supertramp just doesn't do it for me.
What song do you always turn up? 
 90's Hip-Hop & R&B...especially if it's a mix show.  I love hearing the beats blend together, and the samples collide.
What's your favorite news program?
 I like listening to "The World Today" from the BBC, usually overnights.  I get a very different perspective on the U.S.A. and the world from London.
What attracted you to the Telos Alliance?
 Our products, which I've been using in some form or another since 1999.  Also our service, which, from the top-down, is superb and thorough.
What do you see as the biggest challenge facing radio broadcasters in the industry today? 
I think we'll always have AM and FM (and, hopefully HD). I see those terrestrial signals though utilizing their web streams, and services like iHeart Radio and TuneIn Radio apps gaining a lot in the next few years. If you ask someone in your office, or even at the beach to put on the 1100-WTAM feed for the Cleveland Indians game, they're not going to go digging for an old AM/FM radio like the old days. They'll find a stream or source from their phone, tablet, laptop, etc. I feel the sound quality for audio streams can improve overall, and with the products the Telos Alliance currently has, along with products in development, those streams are smoother and crisper than ever before.
When you're not working, you're...
Exploring Cleveland and the Lakefront.  Keeping connected with my family and friends on the East Coast, and dreaming about St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands.
What's your favorite sports team?
I have a few. My nickname when I lived in New England was "Philly Dave," Philly being my hometown. But the only team I root for from the City of Brotherly Love are the Philadelphia Flyers. I'm also a die-hard New York Jets fan (Augh), and a New York Yankees fan.

Topics: The Telos Alliance


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