THE MORNING BUZZ
Once painfully shy, my 8th grade History teacher told me I needed to be in the public’s eye. Maybe he was pushing me out of my shell or maybe he was on to something, none the less, I found myself with my first radio job in high school. Now, a Mom of a 20 something and an elementary kid, it’s hard to keep up, but I manage...barely! My husband shares my very dry sense of humor and puts up with my wide variety of the four legged type around the house as I could have an island full plus some. My love for any type of animal runs deep, as I have many dogs and cats and am usually running a mash unit in the garage for mice and other furry critters.
As we recently moved to the country side in Wisconsin, I love the drive to Rockford to help start your morning! I sure appreciate you making b103 apart of your day!
Q: “Why Rockford?”
It’s a question I’ve heard multiple times since joining b103 Midwest Family Broadcasting in Sept. 17’. Born and raised in L.A., I wasn’t alone to want the life of a performer. My parents, on the other hand, were not too keen on me working in “the industry”. BUT, I am a redhead...nuf’ said. Yes, I have worked much my entire life as a multi-platform performing artist and writer in the big city of La La land and the slightly less but still big city of St. Louis. I’ve been humbled and lucky to have walked red carpets, interviewed celebrities, been awarded with honors like the ACM & CMA’s, and even produced and starred in my own docuseries on Nickelodeon’s Nick Jr. channel.
I am also blessed having two amazing kids, Shira and Leo, who thankfully put up with me, especially during the hard times (divorce, single mom thing) and, to the good times (the free concert tickets and being on national television was “pretty cool” so they say).
BUT in large cities I found my work in radio (my favorite media) was being turned into boring, milk toast content thanks to syndicated non-local radio you usually hear now. I wanted to make a difference and be IN and a PART of a community.
So my answer: “Why NOT Rockford?!”
When given the opportunity to come to this ‘big little city’ as I’ve heard it called, I took to it and have been so grateful and happy! I’m allowed the creative freedom to actually connect to you, and be a part of the positive that I believe Media can be! So THANK YOU for welcoming me, I’ll do my best to make you happy for gifting us “your ears” each morning, and to looking forward to what will “come next” on The Morning Buzz! - Judi
One of the hardest things for me to do is to write about myself. I can tell you I am a single mother of an adult son, whom I love to the moon and back. I was born and raised in Nebraska but have lived all over… but that’s kind of a dull read.
So, I’ve enlisted a few of my friends to help me and this is what they had to say:
Lara is a crazy pet person with an affinity for cats, dachshunds (who she rescues off the highway) and squirrels. She’s a good, morning-coffee partner, who loves wine and enjoys a few bad habits. Lara loves saucy conversation, be warned she has no filter. When you drive in her car, make sure she has at least a quarter-of-a-tank of gas. She will push her car to the limits; 4 miles to empty on a gas gauge does not actually mean FOUR MILES!
One thing my friends repeatedly said about me is that I’m passionate. I love my job because I get to meet people like you. Glad to be on b103 and part of your workday!
I am so excited to be here in Rockford. I grew up just down the road in Southeast Wisconsin (Walworth County). As a child I remember my parents taking me to Rockford for shopping, movies and other fun! Since my father worked in Belvidere it was no big deal to make the trip to town! I remember watching Dialing for Dollars and Sesame Street on 13 WREX when it was an ABC affiliate back in the day… It was funny to see Big Bird on 13 but just like presently there is no PBS Station in Rockford!
So how did I end up in radio? I can thank my older brother for that! I was four years old listening to the radio when I heard my brothers voice over the speakers. My brother was in the next room transmitting on his amateur (Ham) radio. I thought that was so cool! This is what put me on the path to a career in broadcasting. I’ve spent most of my career up and down the dial in Wisconsin from Milwaukee to Madison, now Rockford!
In my free time you’ll find me watching the sky for severe storms as trained Weather Spotter, singing karaoke at one of many great Stateline area bars, hiking, playing tennis, movies, etc.
I hope to meet you at one of our fun station events. Catch you on the radio!
Who is this crazy lady? Hopefully, I’ll live up to the hype. What can I tell you about me? I’m a mom and it’s my most important job. Lizzy is a beautiful, smart, fun and funny kid and Louie is the sweetest Brittany Spaniel ever! I’m truly blessed. sigh I miss the days when they were little. There was a time when Lizzy thought having a mom in radio was cool. She’s a teenager now, so not so much.
When I’m not momming or nagging as Lizzy calls it, I’m usually at a yoga class. I just discovered yoga a few years ago and I’m in LOVE! You should try it and I mean really commit to at least 6 classes. You’ll be hooked. It’s such a great mind/ body experience and yes…..there’s peace and quiet. That alone is the reason to give it a try.
My guilty pleasures are Netflix, Pinterest and lattes and when I can incorporate all three, it’s like hitting the trifecta! At the moment, I’m on this 21 day cleanse, which means no caffeine. What was I thinking? I literally dream of lattes……and Ben & Jerry’s! Yes, I’m counting the minutes.
Oh and here's a life changing nugget. I’m getting married! By the time you read this, I may already be a Mrs.! God love this man for having the patience to deal with my quirkiness.
What is UP!? Radio is what I've wanted to do since I was about as old as my youngest. So, I guess it is safe to say that I'm "living the dream", right? In typical radio fashion, I've moved around from town to town and moved up and down the dial over the years. I could bore you with the list of stations I've been at.. but that would be, like I said, boring! So, here's some fun factoids:
Throws: Like a Girl
Scouting Report: Brad can handle the fastball, but prefers the bean ball. He's always willing to 'take one for the team'.
First Concert Ever: The Monkees wsg Weird Al Yankovic - MN State Fair in 1987
Best Concert Ever: Phish - New Years Eve 1999 along the Alligator Alley in FL. The band went on stage around 11:45pm and didn't stop until the sun came up. How could that NOT be the best show ever?
Worst Concert Ever: My own band in college played a frat party and ended up in the basement shoved behind the furnace.
My first experience being paid to speak into a microphone was in a DQ drive-thru. Later I worked at a grocery store and often "cracked the mic" to do price checks. After several people told me, "You know, those announcements you made were not completely terrible," I thought I'd give radio a try.
After completing broadcasting school and making a demo tape (yes, it was on actual tape) I landed my first "gig" at KKJO 105.1 FM in St. Joseph, Missouri playing pop hits, "Today's Best and Yesterday's Favorites." I was hired immediately upon being interviewed. Clearly my talent shined through...or maybe it was because I was willing to work overnights and then go on Hardee's breakfast runs for the morning team.
In addition to my full-time position in St. Joe, I also picked up part-time work playing Classic Rock at KCFX, 101 The Fox in Kansas City. For a number of years I was on the air pretty much seven days a week. But I didn't care. I loved it. And I needed all the cash I could get to feed my Mountain Dew habit.
My career later took me through Wisconsin with stops in Stevens Point, Wausau, Appleton and Green Bay (I got to be on a first-name basis with U-Haul) before landing in the Forest City. I'm very proud to call Rockford home and I want to thank you for joining me Sunday afternoons here on b103.