Los Angeles Rams
The Los Angeles Rams. Courtesy photo

By Rick Griffin

San Diego-based Broadcast Company of the Americas, the operator of three local radio stations, has announced that XPRS 1090-AM, The Mighty 1090, has become the San Diego flagship station for the National Football League’s Los Angeles Rams.

BCA said XPRS, with a sports talk-show format, will air the play-by-play broadcasts of Rams games over the next two seasons while construction continues until the 2020 opening of the City of Champions Stadium at Hollywood Park, the new home of the Rams and Los Angeles Chargers.

BCA officials said rather than having XPRS hosts focus on the departed Chargers franchise, the choice was made to stay engaged with the NFL by forging a new partnership with the Rams.

“We know how important the NFL is to our audience and we are very excited to partner with one of the NFL’s most dynamic teams in the Rams,” said Mike Glickenhaus, BCA president and market manager. “They will absolutely be a major part of our overall NFL coverage. We have already seen a very enthusiastic response from both listeners and advertising partners.”

The Rams were NFC Conference Champions last season (11-5 in 2017). “I look forward to invading San Diego,” Rams GM Les Snead told XPRS’ Scott Kaplan during an interview. XPRS’ signal covers not only San Diego but it also extends into a large portion of Southern California, including the Los Angeles market. BCA operates XPRS-AM 1090 The Mighty 1090, XPRS-FM 105.7 MAX-FM and XEPE-AM ESPN 1700.

Our City San Diego Magazine Has Closed its Doors

Our City San Diego, a glossy magazine that covered real estate development, business, politics and civic issues in San Diego, has closed its doors.

Launched in 2013 as an online publication, it expanded to become a print publication in 2015, soon after the San Diego Daily Transcript newspaper folded after nearly 130 years of operation. Our City published six print issues in 2016 and 2017, and a winter and spring issue in 2018.

Jack Crittenden

“I thought we could pick up where the Transcript left off, but it didn’t happen like I was hoping,” said Jack Crittenden, publisher. “We gave it seven years, which was plenty of time. We won’t continue it online. We were not getting enough traction.”

Crittenden said no jobs have been lost. Our City staff will transition to other publications owned by Cypress Magazines and Crittenden, who has worked in publishing for nearly 30 years. Cypress Magazines, with 14 employees, publishes several magazines for the legal industry, including “The National Jurist” for law students, “PreLaw” for pre-law students, “Smart Lawyer” and “The International Jurist,” as well as “Golf Inc.” for the golf industry and “Club Management,” an in-house publication for the Club Managers Association of America.

“The publishing industry has changed a lot over the decades,” said Crittenden. “It requires a digital strategy to drive the print and, in some cases, an event strategy. Advertisers are not willing to invest as much into a print-only product, but they are willing to invest in a strong brand.”

Mike Stetz, former San Diego Union-Tribune reporter (1998-2011), who worked as Our City managing editor for five years, said in a May 30 statement. “Economic forces being as they are,” Stetz said, “made the magazine unsustainable. Another print enterprise is going the way of the 8-track player, which shouldn’t be a huge shock, given Time, Newsweek, Sports Illustrated. But it still hurts. It hurts badly.”

SPJ San Diego Names 2018 Journalist of the Year

Andrew Keatts

San Diego’s chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists has named Andrew Keatts of Voice of San Diego its 2018 Journalist of the Year. Keatts, assistant editor and senior investigative reporter, broke the story about a 2016 tax measure sponsored by the San Diego Association of Governments, the regional planning agency.

Keatts revealed that SANDAG’s $18 billion ballot measure relied on the assumption that San Diegans would spend far more than they had historically, meaning the agency’s projections would be off and that its long list of projects might never get done. He later reported that SANDAG staff had known about the issue a year prior to the election but never notified the public or the agency’s board.

Keatts also reported that SANDAG had failed to divulge major details about increasing project costs and changes in its revenue projections for a past tax measure, posing more problems for the list of projects it promised to complete. His work led to a staff shakeup and a state law overhauling the agency’s governance, oversight and auditing practices.

SPJ will recognize Keatts and other winners of writing awards at a dinner on Thursday, July 17, at the Kona Kai Resort & Spa on Shelter Island. Cost to attend is $60 per person. For more information and to RSVP, visit www.spjsandiego.org.

Northrop Grumman Appoints Communications Staff

Northrop Grumman has appointed Yolanda Murphy as VP of communications for its Technology Services sector, succeeding Alleace Gibbs, who will now serve as VP of communications for the company’s Mission Systems sector.

In their new roles, Murphy and Gibbs will lead the communications teams of their respective sectors and will be responsible for the development, integration and implementation of a broad range of communications activities, the company said. Murphy will become a new member of Northrop Grumman’s Communications Council. Gibbs remains a member of that leadership group. Both will report to Lisa Davis, corporate VP of communications for Northrop Grumman.

Rick Griffin

Rick Griffin is a San Diego-based public relations and marketing consultant. His MarketInk column appears weekly on Mondays in Times of San Diego.