CFMI-FM, Rock 101, New Westminster/Vancouver

Corus Entertainment Inc.

CFMI-FM1999101.136,000Corus Entertainment Inc.
CFMI-FM1998101.136,000Shaw Radio Ltd.
CFMI-FM1968101.136,000Radio NW Ltd. (Frank Griffiths)


CKNW received CBC approval to operate an FM station in Vancouver (101.1 MHz with power of 250 watts). The station never made it to the air.


On May 16, Radio NW Ltd. was granted approval to establish a new FM station at New Westminster on 101.1 MHz with effective radiated power of 100,000 watts and antenna height of 709 feet (EHAAT). A country and western music format was proposed. Radio NW owned and operated CKNW 980 in the same city.


Radio NW (Frank Griffiths) launched CFMI-FM on March 22. The format was “pop for adults” and the station was heavily automated with the “Fat Albert” system, using stereo cartridges. CFMI’s transmitter was located on Mount Seymour. Studios and offices were at 815 McBride Plaza in New Westminster. 


On January 11, the CRTC renewed CFMI’s licence until September 30, 1985.


Former general sales manager Ron Bremner was promoted to general manager. 

Don Schaefer left CFMI to become program director at CFOX-FM.


CFMI-FM was given approval to decrease effective radiated power from 40,000 to 36,000 watts and to relocate the transmitter site slightly to the east on Seymour Mountain. 


CFMI-FM planned to move to a harder rock sound after the CRTC approved a change from 70:50 to 50:50 soft to hard pop and rock format. Cancon would increased from 20% to 30%. A decrease in news was denied. 


Dave Rutherford was appointed vice president and assistant general manager of CFMI and CKNW. He would also continue on as program director of CKNW.


In May, CFMI brought in Tom McGouran and Jerry Updike from CITI Winnipeg to host the morning show. They lasted only four months.


CFMI signed Dean Hill, long-time program director and morning host at CKLG-AM, to team with morning man Bob Saye. Ross Winters was CFMI’s program director.

Frank Griffiths and Harold Roozen resigned as co-chairmen and as members of the executive committee at WIC Western International Communications. Edmund King, deputy chairman of Wood Gundy Inc., was the new chairman.


CFMI and CKNW moved to new studios in the TD Tower in downtown Vancouver on January 15. They had been at situated at 815 McBride Plaza in New Westminster. 


Al Anaka was now general sales manager of CFMI/CKNW. John Iacobucci was no longer vice president and director of sales. Anaka had been with CHQR/CKIK-FM in Calgary. 

Jake Edwards was doing a weekend show at CFMI.

Emily Griffiths, president of Western Broadcasting and controlling shareholder of WIC, retired on the third anniversary of her husband Frank’s death. She said she had always intended to leave at age 75. Mrs. Griffiths remained with the company as chairman emeritus. She was succeeded on the board of directors by Edmondo Giacomelli.


The Griffiths family holdings in WIC Western International Communications Ltd. were sold, subject to CRTC approval, to Shaw Communications Inc. and CanWest Global Communications Corp. 

On November 3, Vancouver joined Toronto as the second Canadian city to offer digital radio broadcasting. CBU-AM and FM, along with CBUF-FM, CHUM Limited’s CFUN and CHQM-FM and Fraser Valley Radio’s STAR-FM began regular digital radio broadcasting. All six signals were broadcast from two pods located at the CBC’s Mount Seymour transmission facilities. Rogers Broadcasting, Shaw Radio and Westcom Radio were planning to file applications for six more digital services in the city (including CFMI-FM), to operate from the Rogers transmitter site, also on Mount Seymour. 


CKNW general manager Rod Gunn announced his retirement. 


CFMI-CKNW chopped 17 full-time positions. WIC Radio President Doug Rutherford said the move had to be made for economic reasons. The cuts were the latest in a series of staff and program reductions at WIC stations. 

Tim Morgan joined CFMI’s airstaff from Calgary’s CJAY-FM.

New WIC Western International Communications CEO was Peter Classon, who succeeded Thomas Peddie. Classon had served on WIC’s Board of directors but was probably best known as the former president/CEO of the BC Lions football club.

Following months of negotiation, agreements were filed with the CRTC on the split of WIC assets between CanWest Global, Corus Radio Company (formerly Shaw Radio), and Shaw Communications.

On October 18, CFMI was given approval to operate a transitional digital radio undertaking. The transmitters would be installed on Mount Seymour and Metrotown – Cantel Building in Burnaby and would employ the EUREKA-147 digital audio broadcasting system. The station would transmit on 1461.536 MHz with an effective isotropic radiated power of 3,381 watts from Mt. Seymour and 2,774 watts from Burnaby.


Following an April hearing in Vancouver, in July, the CRTC announced the approval of the purchase of WIC Radio by Corus Radio Company, which included CFMI Vancouver.

On June 19, CFMI was authorized to add a rebroadcast transmitter at Whistler, operating on 90.7 MHz with ERP of 50 watts. 


Christian Hall added assistant program director duties to his role as music director at Rock 101.


On August 3 the CRTC approved the application by Corus Premium Television Ltd. to change the authorized contours of CFMI-FM transmitter VF2341 Whistler, by relocating the transmitter and increasing the antenna height. These changes reflect the actual technical parameters following construction of the transmission facilities.


The new Promotions Director at Classic Rock 101 as of December 21 was Aaron Buckley, formerly of Virgin 953 (CKZZ). He succeeded Crosby McWilliams.


Steve Parsons left Rock 101 as program director, to join Astral Radio. Cole Alford, an 11-year broadcast veteran, left Corus Radio Vancouver to join Astral Radio Vancouver on May 4. He would be Business Manager at Astral.

Doug Court passed away on March 5. He had spent 30 years at CKNW as an engineer. He started his radio career there. Court was part of the engineering team responsible for relocating the entire station after fire destroyed its original studios on Columbia Street. Over the years they took CKNW from a 5,000 watt community station to the 50,000 watt market leader. Court was part of the team that launched CFMI-FM. He officially retired in 1981 but continued to work at CKNW/CFMI part-time.

Classic Rock 101, Vancouver’s only classic rock station, celebrated its 40th anniversary this year. Since signing on the air in 1970, Classic Rock 101 continued to provide listeners with memorable programming and the most talked about promotions in Vancouver. The station featured a team of veterans with pride and passion for rock ‘n’ roll and the artists who created it. To celebrate, the station decided to thank its loyal listeners by throwing a year-long bash full of surprises and special events. CFMI featured Bro Jake in the morning, weekdays from 5 a.m. to 10 a.m., classic rock historian Robin Larose mid-days and Vancouver radio icons Dean and Hatch in the afternoon drive. Part of Corus Radio’s network of classic rock stations, Classic Rock 101 also features the premiere Canadian classic rock documentary program, The Legends of Classic Rock with Jeff Woods. 

Lou Del Gobbo, the former General Manager of Corus Radio Vancouver, was now Vice President/CFO at the B.C. Cancer Foundation.

There were a number of changes at Corus Entertainment related to its organization review to streamline decision-making and clarify roles and mandates. Among the changes: Reporting to Hal Blackadar, Executive Vice President and interim President of Corus Radio was Garry McKenzie, GM, Corus Radio Vancouver (was GM at Corus Radio Calgary).

Martin Strong, the co-host of the Brother Jake morning show on Rock 101, was no longer with the station.  

Classic Rock 101 announced that legendary Canadian rock icon Mike Reno of Loverboy would join the on-air lineup as the new co-host of The Brother Jake Show (5:30 to 10:00 a.m.) starting on January 4, 2011. Classic Rock 101 also featured classic rock historian Robin Larose in mid-days and Vancouver radio icons Dean and Hatch in afternoon drive. 

Former Rock 101 Program Director Steve Parsons was now a Program Consultant at SHORE 104. 


Martin Strong, co-host of the Brother Jake morning show on Rock 101, was no longer with the station. 

On July 26, the CRTC approved the application by Corus Premium Television Ltd. to change the technical parameters of CFMI-FM New Westminster by increasing the average effective radiated power from 37,000 to 53,000 watts (maximum ERP from 75,000 to 100,000 watts), by decreasing the effective height of antenna above average terrain from 686 to 386.4 meters and by relocating its transmitter. Corus stated that the relocation of its transmitter was necessary because of ongoing technical problems as well as other difficulties with the existing transmitter site.

Program Director Andy Ross of WIRED 96.3FM Saskatoon the last two years moved to Rock 101 Vancouver as PD in late October.

In mid-August, 102.1 the Edge program director Ross Winters returned to the West Coast to become PD for Rock 101 Vancouver and Q107 Calgary. He would also assist Chris Duncombe as assistant program director at CFOX Vancouver.

On-air personality Graham Hatch left CFMI for CHHR-FM. Jennifer Pelat moved from Corus Radio Vancouver to become program director of the Corus Peterborough cluster, effective September 15. 


Classic Rock 101 announced that well-known Vancouver personality Mike Eckford would join The Bro Jake Morning Show, with Brother Jake and Alece Anderson, effective January 3 at 6:00 a.m. Eckford would replace Mike Reno, who was returning to the stage with his band Loverboy for over 100 concert dates in 2012. 

Former Corus Radio Vancouver general manager Garry McKenzie, was named regional general manager for Corus Radio Calgary, Edmonton and Winnipeg, effective April 2.

It was announced that Brad Phillips, Vice President of B.C. operations for Astral Media, would be the new General Manager of the Corus Entertainment Vancouver radio cluster, succeeding Garry McKenzie who was now heading prairie radio operations for Corus and based in Calgary.


In February, CFMI made a slight adjustment to its format – from Classic Rock to Classic Rock-Classic Hits.

Corus Radio Vancouver announced that Ronnie Stanton joined the team as the new Brand Director for Classic Rock 101, starting with the station on May 1. Ronnie was most recently the Operations Manager and Brand Director at Astral radio for Virgin 95.3, Shore 104 and AM 650.


CFMI changed format from Classic Rock to Greatest Hits of the ‘70s, ‘80s & ‘90s. Branding changed from CLASSIC ROCK 101 to ROCK 101.


In October, Corus began testing HD Radio at CFMI-FM. ROCK 101 was being broadcast on CFMI HD1 and CKNW 980 on CFMI HD2.


In July, CFMI-FM added a simulcast of CHMJ 730 to its HD transmission. CHMJ was available via CFMI-FM-HD3 with power of 3,162 watts.


Dave McCormick (Big Daddy) passed away on March 29. He worked at a number of stations in Canada and the U.S. until the early 1970s, when he joined CKNW and then at sister station CFMI where he created the long-running Discumentary program (1971-86). He later hosted afternoon drive at CJJR-FM (1986-98) and then middays at CKBD (until 2008). He spent the last few years of his career as a host at CISL.

In August, the owner of VF2142 Uranium City, SK, voluntarily surrendered the licence for the 40 watt RDU which had simulcast the programming of CFMI.


Glen Livingstone died at the age of 66 on May 6. He was a board operator and producer with CKNW and CFMI from 1972 to 1999. Livingstone was also one of the writers and producers behind the “Discumentary” program.

The story continues elsewhere…
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