At ceremonies held in Nashville on June 21, former Detroit air personalities Linda Lee and Joe Wade Formicola were posthumously inducted into the 2017 Country Radio Hall of Fame.
Kid Rock and CBS Radio’s Vice President of Programming Tim Roberts gave induction speeches on Lee’s behalf. Her husband, Jeff Young, and two daughters, Gina Holmes Mills and Alex Young, were also present for the ceremony. Lee died on March 31, 2017 after a seven-month cancer battle. Lee was an air personality on WYCD-FM (Detroit) for more than 20 years.
Formicola, who worked at both WWWW-FM and WYCD-FM in Detroit as well as other markets around the country passed away unexpectedly on May 31, 2017.
See WYCD’s article on Linda Lee and Joe Wade Formicola here.
Both Lee and Formicola attended Specs Howard School of Media Arts before launching their radio careers. Dick Kernen, VP of Industry Relations at Specs Howard, told the MAB that Formicola was in one of the school’s first graduating classes back in 1970.
“It seemed that everyone was into rock music back then, but Joe decided to move into country.” Kernen said, recalling that Formicola’s first job in radio was in Port Huron in the early ’70s.
“The irony is that in 1994, Linda Lee interned at Detroit’s WYCD, working for the station’s morning show co-host, another Specs Grad and Country Radio Hall of Fame inductee, Karen Dalessandro. Eventually Linda’s career landed her a job as producer and co-host of the morning show at WYCD, paired with fellow Specs grad, Joe Wade Formicola.”
Kernen said he spoke with Formicola days before he passed away, remarking that “both (Joe and Linda) were terrific people. Linda was one of the sweetest beyond belief.”
Linda Lee also will be inducted into the Michigan Broadcasting Hall of Fame with the MAB Legacy Award and will be honored at ceremonies on August 22. More information here.
The Country Radio Hall of Fame is dedicated to the recognition of those individuals who have made a significant impact on the radio industry over the course of a 20-year period, with 15 of those years being contributed to Country-specific radio.