Charese Fruge’ Talks To Shauna Moran

This article was originally posted to AllAccess’ “Women To Watch” series, written by Charese Fruge on May 6, 2020

Like most people in the radio business, Shauna Moran moved to San Diego thinking she’d only be there for a few years. Almost 25 years later, she’s the Program Director of KIOZ, Rock 105.3 and KGB,101.5. She’s got some pretty impressive Rock stations on her resume having started in the business as an Intern/Receptionist/Promotion assistant at KAZY in Denver. That internship is where she fell in love with radio and the rest is history. “When Jacor purchased us, I became Programming/Promotion Assistant and then moved into Promotion Director role at KBPI and The Fox,” she says. “Later, Jacor purchased 91X and I moved to San Diego to become Marketing Director for 91X and Channel 933. We eventually purchased KIOZ, where I was Promotion Director for a few years before I became Program Director in 2001. In 2010 I also became PD of KGB.”

Unlike most people in the radio business, Shauna is fortunate enough to still be living, working and raising a family in the same city since 1996. Anyone who’s lived in San Diego can relate. You find out it’s paradise. No one wants to leave once you get there. “My intention was to move to San Diego for just a couple of years,” she says. It didn’t take her long to realize that wasn’t in the cards. “I feel so absolutely fortunate to be able to do what I love in a city that I love,” says Moran. “It has been so great to evolve both stations throughout the years and stay competitive and relevant. I have also met some awesome people along the way both within iHeart/San Diego and outside of our company. San Diego is an unusual market. I think everyone who works here feels very lucky. On the flip side it also causes anxiety because I never want it to end!”

One of the biggest things Shauna has appreciated over the course of her career is watching the success of her team members. “Watching my staff blossom and grow throughout the years has been so rewarding,” she says. “Some have stayed in radio and have done exceedingly well and some have left the business and are also doing really well. It’s fun to stay in touch with them through social media and see them in different cities or with new families–being a part of their lives and them being a part of mine is the best experience in the world.”

The thing that makes Shauna so passionate about radio is that, according to her, radio stations become a part of you. “They are like your children,” she says. “They are challenging, fun, exhilarating, heartbreaking, stressful…I could go on and on. At the end of the day you become so proud of them and you want to always see them succeed and do well and that is what creates the passion.”

There have been some challenging times over the years for Shauna. “I’ve had some that have been doozies,” she says. “Probably the most challenging time for me was when we parted ways with the lead member of my morning show on KIOZ and within weeks, my other morning show, DSC (Dave Shelly and Chainsaw) exited. There was a lot of emotion with these moves, hurt, fear and anxiety. But you put your head down, rally the troops and push forward,” says Moran. The loss of DSC was a shock to the entire industry, they had been in the market since 1990 and were already legends. Not to worry though, things worked out in the end. “Through it we hired some amazing people, we saw others really grow and thrive with the changes and we started to succeed again,” says Moran. “DSC is back on KGB again and doing so well and it feels like they never left. And Rock 105.3’s “The Show,” (a four person team) sounds better than ever and are always consistent performers. I love all of them!”

As for as dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic, San Diego avoided being hit hard, but they are still practicing social distancing. “I’m working from home more often, but I try to go into the office a couple of days a week. I hate Zoom Meetings–I’ll be getting Botox after all this is said and done!,”says Moran. “I think dealing with the pandemic shows how important local content is. This pandemic hit every state differently and it was important to be experiencing the same thing that your community was experiencing,” she says. “Additionally, I think that there are some cool new ideas that came out of this as well and can change and evolve the way we do things for our clients and our listeners moving forward.”

Like most programmers, ratings keep Shauna up at night, and her family keeps her sane, especially her 11 year old son Jameson. As far as mentoring young women who want to get into the business, “I never thought of myself as a ‘female’ Program Director – I always just thought of myself as a Program Director. I think it’s important to mentor anyone who wants to be in this position – male, female, young, old…if they have the passion for it and I can help them, then I am there for them no matter who they are.”

Follow Shauna Moran on Facebook at Shauna Moran-Brown and Instagram @shaunamoranbrown