Randy Michaels

Randy Michaels

Infobox Person
name = Randy Michaels

image_size =
caption =
employer =
occupation = Chief Operations Officer (COO) Tribune Company
website = [http://www.tribune.com Tribune Company]

Randy Michaels (born Benjamin Homel) is an American broadcasting executive who is the chief operating officer (COO) of the Tribune Company and a member of the National Association of Broadcasters TV Board.cite pressrelease|url=http://www.nab.org/AM/Template.cfm?Section=News_Room&TEMPLATE=/CM/ContentDisplay.cfm&CONTENTID=12013|title=Randy Michaels Named to NAB TV Board|date=2008-04-07|publisher=National Association of Broadcasters|accessdate=2008-05-14]

Early career

Homel started his career in radio as an engineer.Fact|date=August 2008 He assumed the name of Randy Michaels when he started doing on-air work in Buffalo at WGR radio.Fact|date=August 2008 At one point during his early career, Homel was working at 5 stations using 3 different names.Fact|date=May 2008

Homel was referred to as "boy wonder" for Taft Broadcasting in the early 1970s.Fact|date=August 2008 He served as Taft's vice president of programming in his 20s, successfully turning stations WGRQ Buffalo, WKRQ and WKRC Cincinnati, and WDAF Kansas City.Fact|date=August 2008

In 1983, Homel left Taft with partner Robert Lawrence to form Seven Hills Broadcasting.Fact|date=August 2008 With partners, he purchased stations in Nashville and Knoxville, along with WSKS and WLW Cincinnati.Fact|date=August 2008 Within three years WLW had become the pioneer of modern talk radio, rising to the top of the ratings.Fact|date=August 2008

Seven Hills merged with Jacor in 1986 and Homel became executive vice president (EVP) of programming and co-COO before assuming the President/COO position during re-structuring under Sam Zell, in May 1993.Fact|date=August 2008 In 1996, Zell named Homel CEO of Jacor.Fact|date=August 2008

At Jacor, Homel built a team that produced not only the most impressive acquisition record but also the industry’s best "same store" growth figures.Fact|date=May 2008

In 1992, Homel hired a young Sean Hannity to join Jacor as a talkshow host in Atlanta.Fact|date=August 2008 In 1997 Homel cut one of the largest deals in radio history with Rush Limbaugh to acquire the program.Fact|date=August 2008 In 1998, Homel made a deal with Dr. Laura Schlessinger, at the time the #2 talkshow host in the country.Fact|date=August 2008

Homel first experienced television in the mid 90’s when Jacor purchased Citicasters.Fact|date=August 2008 The deal included two television stations: WTSP in Tampa (swapped to Gannett for six radio stations shortly after acquisition) and WKRC-TV in Cincinnati which held ratings dominance during the late 1990s and early 2000s.Fact|date=August 2008

In May 1999, Zell and Homel merged Jacor with Clear Channel Communications.Fact|date=August 2008 While CEO of Clear Channel, Homel took the merged Jacor/Clear Channel from 425 stations to 1200 in a three-year period. Homel remained in the CEO role until July 2002.Fact|date=August 2008

After leaving Clear Channel in 2002, Homel started several private broadcast firms, including Radioactive LLC and Product 1st.Fact|date=August 2008 FCC ownership reports indicate that Benjamin Homel (also identified as the CEO of Local TV LLC) is the sole member of Radioactive LLC, which controls the licenses or building permits for 23 new FM radio stations acquired from FCC license auctions.cite web|url=http://fjallfoss.fcc.gov/prod/cdbs/forms/prod/getattachment_exh.cgi?exhibit_id=534573|title=Ownership Report for Commercial Broadcast Stations|publisher=FCC|accessdate=2008-08-24]

Early in 2005, Homel began working with Oak Hill Capital partners on acquisition opportunities, culminating in the creation of Local TV LLC, a company that acquired nine local network-affiliated television stations formerly owned by The New York Times Company.cite web|title=About Us|url=http://www.localtvllc.com/aboutus/|work=localtvllc.com|publisher=Local TV LLC|format=Web|date=August 2008|accessdate=2008-08-24|quote=We are currently in the process of acquiring a portfolio of 9 television stations. We intend to expand our media footprint, and are pleased to have the NYT stations as a foundation.] cite pressrelease|title=Press Room|url=http://www.localtvllc.com/pressroom/|publisher=Local TV|date=2008-08-22|accessdate=2008-08-24|quote=Local TV LLC is a broadcast holding company created in 2007 to acquire nine heritage television stations in eight mid­sized markets. In 2008, the company acquired eight Fox Affiliates previously owned by News Corporation. Local TV is owned by Oak Hill Capital Partners, management and a consortium of bankers and high yield lenders....] In early 2007, Homel became CEO of the company. On December 22, 2007, Local TV announced it was acquiring eight large market stations from Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation. [cite pressrelease|title=Oak Hill Capital Partners to Purchase Eight Television Stations From News Corporation|publisher=Local TV|url=http://www.foxbusiness.com/markets/industries/media/article/oak-hill-capital-partners-purchase-television-stations-news-corporation_418186_15.html|date = 2007-12-21|accessdate = 2007-12-22]

Tribune Company

On December 20, 2007 Homel became executive vice president (EVP) of the Chicago-based Tribune Company and chief executive officer (CEO) of Interactive and Broadcasting operations as part of the management restructuring following the consummation of the Tribune Company privatization transaction.cite pressrelease|url=http://www.tribune.com/pressroom/releases/2007/12202007.html|title= Tribune Completes Going-Private Transaction; Sam Zell Named Chairman & CEO|date=2007-12-20|work=Tribune Company Press Room|publisher=Tribune Company|accessdate=2008-08-24]

His role at the Tribune Company includes overseeing most of the company's newspapers. Homel will also oversee Local TV LLC through a management agreement.Fact|date=August 2008 The Tribune/LocalTV management agreement creates the largest television group in the United States in terms of total reach.Fact|date=August 2008

In April 2008, Homel raided the top executive ranks at Clear Channel,Fact|date=August 2008 as CFO Jerry Kersting, Second Vice President (SVP) for Programming executives Marc Chase and Sean Compton, and VP of Technology Steve Gable all left Clear Channel to join the Tribune Company.cite news|url=http://www.broadcastingcable.com/article/CA6548738.html|author=Page Albiniak|title=Tribune Taps Clear Channel's Chase for Interactive Group|work=Broadcasting & Cable|publisher="broadcastingcable.com" (Broadcasting & Cable)|date=2008-04-07|accessdate=2008-05-14]

On May 7, 2008, Homel was named Chief operating officer (COO) of the Tribune Company. [cite news|url=http://news.radio-online.com/cgi-bin/$rol.exe/headline_id=n17938|title=Tribune Names Randy Michaels as Chief Operating Officer|work=Radio Online|accessdate=2008-05-14]



*Kinsley, Michael. [http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/06/09/AR2008060903050.html "My Most Productive Column Ever: Measuring Value by Word Count: What a Brilliant Idea!"] "The Washington Post", June 9, 2008. Accessed August 24, 2008. (Comments on Randy Michaels, with reference to article by Saba.)
*Saba, Jennifer. [http://www.editorandpublisher.com/eandp/search/article_display.jsp?vnu_content_id=1003813004 "Update: Tribune Hints at Big Staff and Page Cuts -- and Measuring Reporters' Value By the Inch] ". "Editor & Publisher", June 6, 2008. (Subscription-only access.)

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