KASU Names Reaves To News Director Position
JONESBORO — Johnathan Reaves, an on-air host for the “Morning Edition” at KASU-FM, has been named news director, Station Manager Mike Doyle announced Monday. The National Public Radio (NPR) member station is licensed to Arkansas State University.
The position became vacant in April after the station’s long-time news director Greg Chance died suddenly in an accident after covering a local meeting for the station.
“After receiving applications from around the U.S. in our search to replace Greg, I believe the most competent applicant is already working here,” Doyle said. “Johnathan has earned two degrees in his field from A-State’s well-known mass communications program; won more than a half-dozen journalism awards in the four years he’s been with us; and received training conducted by NPR staff members resulting in his certification by the Public Radio News Directors Association. He is ready to be the KASU news director.”
Reaves joined the KASU staff in October 2011 as an on-air host for the 5-9 a.m. “Morning Edition” shift. His job has also involved field reporting and other duties related to broadcast and online journalism. He will continue as the “Morning Edition” host until another news announcer/reporter is hired.
“I am excited to be the news director for KASU,” said Reaves. “I am honored to have been chosen for this position. I envision building a news team that will continue to focus on the issues which affect those who live in our listening area, and will report on those issues through a number of differing platforms, including digital and social media reporting. As the needs for today’s audiences continue to evolve and change, my goal is to make sure we are meeting those needs, while continuing to provide the award-winning, quality news coverage our audience expects and deserves.
“Additionally, I look forward to working with the many talented students who are enrolled in the College of Media and Communication. I will be looking for students who are interested in radio news coverage and will work with them in the field to produce high-quality pieces. I am excited about the opportunity to teach students and work with them on radio news coverage. I also look forward to working with the faculty and staff in the College of Media and Communication and at Arkansas State University. I would like to thank the staff at KASU for their confidence in me in this position.”
Reaves lived in Minot, N.D., with his family until he was 12, when his father in the U.S. Air Force was re-assigned to Eaker Air Force Base near Blytheville and the family moved to Mississippi County.
“I took a radio course during my 1992 senior year at Gosnell High School and became passionate about broadcasting,” Reaves said.
In 1993, he started working at KOSE radio in Osceola while earning his associate’s degree at Arkansas Northeastern College and his radio-television bachelor’s degree at A-State, graduating in 1996 with an emphasis in news. Reaves also worked at KASU as a student.
For the next decade and a half, Reaves worked at KWAK-AM/FM in Stuttgart, Ark., as news director and morning host. He was active in that community as a member of the Lions Club and was appointed to serve an unexpired term on the Stuttgart City Council.
After returning to A-State, Reaves enrolled in the university’s master’s degree program in mass communication while working at KASU. He received his M.S.M.C. in August 2014.
Reaves and his wife Jennifer live in Valley View where their daughter Emily attends junior high school. The Reaveses are members of First Baptist Church in downtown Jonesboro.
Reaves has won the following awards while serving as a KASU journalist:
• 2013 Arkansas Associated Press Broadcasters Association first-place award for radio newscast for Morning Edition.
• 2013 Society of Professional Journalists Arkansas Professional Chapter first-place radio investigative award for the 16-part “Highway 49” Series.
• 2013 Arkansas Associated Press Broadcasters Association second-place award for enterprise-feature or investigative reporting on “Blueway Designation Stirs Debate.”
• 2013 Arkansas Associated Press Broadcasters Association second-place award for use of natural sound for “Out of the Dark Rally.”
• 2012 Arkansas Chapter of the Society for Professional Journalists first-place award in the radio division for a 15-part “Highway 49 Series” that aired in March 2012 on KASU.
• 2012 Arkansas Associated Press Broadcasters Association second-place award for enterprise-feature or investigative reporting on “Making a Difference—Habitat for Humanity.”
• 2012 Arkansas Associated Press Broadcasters’ Association honorable-mention award for use of natural sound on “Highway 49 Series—Brookland Schools.”
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