Susan Geary to help launch NPR station

Susan Geary with the local Emmy she helped land for the Blue Ridge Public Television program, JobQuest.

Susan Geary, who produced the morning news program and hosted an on-air shift at Roanoke’s public radio station (WVTF) for almost three years, is leaving town to do some trailblazing. Geary, who also produced the Emmy-winning JobQuest program on Blue Ridge Public Television at one point, will help start up WDDE in Dover, Delaware, that state’s first public radio station.

 Geary was hired by Micheline Boudreau and Tom Byrne at WDDE who have been working closely with Liane Hansen, the former “Weekend Edition” host on National Public Radio.

After retiring and moving to Delaware, Hansen noted that there was no public radio outlet there. So with the support of the state legislature and two state colleges, the University of Delaware and Delaware State, Hansen went to work, creating WDDE, which goes on the air next week with Geary coming on as the Morning Edition local host shortly thereafter.

The station began as an online station only. A group called Delaware First Media, made up of public radio veterans from Boston and Philadelphia, are helping launch WDDE. Geary will also be tasked with developing local content.

 “It is the newest NPR station in the nation,” said Geary, who also owns a business, 1st Rate Resume. She left WVTF over philosophical differences in 2010 (“it wasn’t a good fit”) and went on to host a program, “Career Matters,” on Fox Radio 910am. That program ended this past New Year’s Eve. Since then the well-traveled Geary, who has worked in radio markets all around the country, has been looking for another opportunity.

 “I practice the three R’s…radio, resumes, roller skating,” noted Geary, a go-my-own-way type who likes to strap on a set of wheels now and then. She also likes to apply for jobs in part as a way to make sure her resume writing skills are current. “I saw that show [in Delaware] and it was actually very intriguing to me.” She had looked at radio positions in Arizona and Colorado, before Hansen told her she was the top choice for the morning anchor position in Dover.

 So its back to getting up at 2:45 in the morning, a sacrifice she will make. “It sounds like a great opportunity,” said Geary, who spent almost three years behind the scenes or behind the mic in Roanoke on public radio and another year or so on her AM radio show. “It’s a part of history,” said Geary about the August 6 launch, “it’s going to be very exciting.”

 – By Gene Marrano