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WDAY: The News Leader

Published May 22, 2012, 06:55 PM

Bill Marcil, Sr. talks about the past, present and future of WDAY AM

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) - Bill Marcil, Senior has been at the helm of Forum Communications and WDAY for more than half of the 90 years of radio. He has seen radio evolve. It was music based in its early years. Now it's more contentious with talk radio.

By: WDAY Staff Reports, WDAY

Bill Marcil, Senior has been at the helm of Forum Communications and WDAY for more than half of the 90 years of radio. He has seen radio evolve. It was music based in its early years. Now it's more contentious with talk radio.

Regardless, WDAY radio has always been there, from the depression to Fargo's killer tornado to the assassination of JFK, to historic floods. We sat down with Mr. Marcil today.

Bill Marcil, Sr. – Chairman Forum Communications: “Wow, this is really a big deal for our company because this is history. WDAY going on the air in 1922 and the Forum becoming involved in 1935 and '58, it's a big deal for us and for me it's really a reflection back on really what took place in the early years and doing a little research on the radio station you just feel good about being associated with a company like this.”

Kerstin: “In a time when radio we know as so changeable, either ownership or talent or everything in between, how do you think WDAY has maintained such a constant presence over the last 90 years?”

Bill Marcil, Sr.: “Well, it's because of our professional employees basically. The programming changes from time to time and the ratings go up and they go down but we've been pretty consistent and we've had good people and the formats have changed somewhat but it's still talk radio, it's more commentary now and the talk shows. It's changed in that regard. I think what I would miss most is during the 50s when they got into the music shows and they had these bands playing all over the territory promoting WDAY. I'm sort of a nostalgic type of guy anyway.”

Dana: “What do you think of the changes - It used to be singing kumbaya and holding hands and now with talk radio it seems a lot more contentious?”

Bill Marcil, Sr: “There's no question about it. It is more contentious - I preferred it the other way actually.”

Mr. Marcil is already inviting people down for WDAY radio's 100th birthday.

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