Mark Smith, a long-time member of the KASU campus radio station staff at Arkansas State University, has been named station manager. Smith’s appointment comes after the retirement of Mike Doyle in July. KASU, 91.9 FM, is the 100,000-watt public broadcasting service of ASU in Jonesboro.
“I am very grateful for the encouragement and mentoring that Mike offered to prepare me for this position,” Smith said. “I hope to continue in his example of leadership in moving KASU forward and continuing to provide unique and interesting programming and content for our listeners and followers.”
A graduate of the radio-television program at ASU, Smith earned his degree in broadcasting in 1986 and received a master of public administration in 2015. He began his radio career in 1982, just out of high school, with a part-time summer job at KBXM, a small AM station in Kennett, Missouri. After his freshman year, he landed another summer job at KBOA/KTMO in Kennett and continued to work weekends there while attending college.
Smith first worked at KASU as part of the station’s student staff in the early 1980s. After graduation, he worked at commercial radio stations in Arkansas and Missouri before returning to KASU as a member of the professional staff in May 1990.
Starting out with the title of farm director, he produced an early morning program of farm news and features. He has received awards from the Associated Press for his farm reporting and was twice presented with the “Tell the Farming Story” award from the Arkansas Farm Bureau Association.
When KASU picked up NPR’s highly acclaimed news program, “Morning Edition,” in October 1995, Smith became the local host of “Morning Edition” and took on the task of integrating local news and features into the program. It was about this time that KASU began doing on-air fundraising drives, asking listeners for financial support for the non-commercial public radio station.
Smith has also played an active role as a panelist in live broadcast political debates and other events.
He recently helped spearhead the premiere of a new one-hour weekly radio program titled “A-State Connections.” The series informs listeners of the many ways that ASU is connecting to people in the region, across the state and around the world.