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TAB Honors Six Industry Leaders at #TAB2021

- Inaugural Class of Hightower Award Winners

Texas Radio & Television Broadcasters celebrated the achievements of six extraordinary industry leaders at TAB’s Annual Awards Gala.

The Gala, part of the TAB Show, was held Wednesday, August 4 from 6:30-9:30 pm at the JW Marriott in Downtown Austin.

“Texas broadcasting is nothing without the passionate and dedicated leadership of individual men and women who take to heart the federal license to do good for the communities they serve, and no one embodies that spirit greater than the six Radio and TV broadcasters we’re honoring this year,” said TAB President Oscar Rodriguez.

“They are examples not just to others in the industry, but also to the communities they serve, and are among those who’ve dedicated their lives to this mission of service, as well as others who are still charting the course of their careers.

“In every case, these honorees define the highest standards of leadership in our industry amidst an ever-evolving media marketplace wherein broadcasting remains unique in delivering important news, emergency information and entertainment while also powering local business growth.

“It is an honor to recognize their exceptional accomplishments and contributions to the Lone Star State and I invite all Texas broadcasters to join us in celebrating with them Aug. 3-4 in Austin.”

Pioneer Broadcaster of the Year – Mark Grubbs, Ranch Radio Group KerrvilleMark Grubbs

Since 1993, Mark Grubbs has been owner/operator of the Ranch Radio Group stations in the Texas Hill Country.

As a “consummate Radio guy,” he is always looking for opportunities to serve his community, either with new promotion, programming, and marketing strategies to better serve listeners and local businesses, or a soulful solution to a pressing need.

Whether it’s serving as the official Radio station for the Gillespie County Fair or raising money for 4-H and FFA scholarships, Grubbs’ passion for serving his community is woven seamlessly into everything he and the Ranch Staff do.

Broadcaster of the Year – Marty Wind, KLUX-FM Corpus ChristiMarty Wind

After 38 years, Marty Wind recently retired from managing KLUX-FM Corpus Christi, a station he helped start for the Diocesan Telecommunications Corp.

He introduced digital radio broadcasting to the Coastal Bend area in 2006 and today, non-commercial station KLUX is a market leader in public service, with a long list of achievements highlighted by courageous endeavors to stay on-air even in the worst of hurricanes.

Wind’s heartfelt commitment to his fellow broadcasters and listeners is unmatched.

Whether it be technical advice, emergency news and information, education or inspiration and relaxation, Wind is there to serve and protect the people of the Coastal Bend.

George Marti Award for Engineering Excellence – Norm PhilipsNorm Philips

Texas Radio engineering and the name Norm Philips go hand in hand.

He spent the bulk of his career directing engineering operations for Susquenanna, Cumulus, GAP and Townsquare Media stations in Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston, Atlanta, Denver and several other markets.

As one of two engineering VPs for Townsquare, Philips managed nearly 200 stations across the US and has inspired a legion of broadcast engineers who are sustaining Radio stations throughout Texas today.

After working in the industry for nearly 50 years, he retired in 2016.

Jason Hightower Awards for Broadcast Excellence

TAB is proud to present the inaugural Jason Hightower Awards recognizing three individuals with at least 10 years' experience in the broadcast industry who have demonstrated a proficiency for enterprise and innovation in servicing their stations’ audience, advertisers and communities.

The honorees include:

  • Melissa Rivera, Digital Sales Manager for Townsquare Media Victoria
  • Joe Ellis, Executive Producer of Investigations and News Projects at KVUE-TV Austin
  • Josh Gorbutt, News Director for KBTX-TV Bryan-College Station

The awards are named in honor of TAB 2009 Chairman Jason Hightower, owner/operator of KMOO Mineola, who passed away in March 2009 after battling brain cancer at the age of 37.

Questions? Contact TAB’s Oscar Rodriguez or call (512) 322-9944.

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