Don Geronimo

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Don Geronimo
Birth name Michael L. Sorce
Born (1958-09-18) September 18, 1958 (age 56)
Show The Don Geronimo Show
Station(s) The RELM Network, Washington, DC / Sacramento, CA
Network The RELM Network
Country US
Previous show(s) Don and Mike Show

Michael L. Sorce (born September 18, 1958), better known by his stage name Don Geronimo, is an American radio personality[1] formerly featured on the nationally syndicated radio talk show Don and Mike Show.[2]

Career[edit]

Geronimo began his career in radio at the age of 13 when he went to work at Rockville, Maryland AM station WINX (now WLXE, a Spanish-language music station).[3][4][5] He continued working at a variety of local stations, being fired at each for lacking the required FCC broadcaster's license, before forging a license. Geronimo landed what was then his dream job at WLS-FM in Chicago, Illinois in the early 1980s. He then moved to WBBM-FM (B96) to do the evening show. Eventually, he replaced Dick Biondi doing morning drive at the same station.[4]

Geronimo returned to the Washington, D.C. area in 1985, doing afternoons at WAVA. He moved to mornings in 1986, replacing Charlie & Harrigan. His partnership with Mike O'Meara, co-host of the Don and Mike Show, was forged at WAVA. Their show moved to WJFK-FM in 1991.[3][4]

Washington Post radio reporter Marc Fisher features Geronimo in his book Something in the Air, on the rise and fall of radio in the United States. Fisher also conducted an interview with Geronimo prior to his first of three retirements, the first from The Don & Mike Show in 2008, during which Don spoke out about his frustration with the direction[clarification needed] radio has taken following high profile decency events such as the Janet Jackson Super Bowl incident.[6]

After only two months in retirement,[when?] Geronimo announced that he would return to the air on WOCM, a small, independently owned radio station in Ocean City, Maryland. Don Geronimo's Rockin' Soul Show featured popular music from the '70s and '80s. Geronimo described the show as "music that doesn't suck". After one month on the air at WOCM, Geronimo was fired from the station over creative differences.[citation needed] Don subsequently hosted a mid-morning talk show on WGMD (92.7 FM Rehoboth Beach, Delaware) from June 22, 2009 to October 13, 2009, when he retired for his second time,[citation needed] although he did some fill-in work at Classic Hits WCBS-FM in New York a few days in late November and December 2009.[7]

Don Geronimo was named midday host of 1140 The Fan 1140 KHTK (AM), Sacramento effective on Monday, June 21, 2010. The four-hour program was scheduled Monday through Friday, noon to 4 pm local time. On January 27, Geronimo announced that he would be a regular on the TV show Good Day Sacramento, with his first appearance on February 14, 2011. On May 9, 2011, Geronimo announced that his contract with CBS was extended through 2014 and he was named Program Director for 1140 The Fan KHTK. As of July 11, 2011, Geronimo's show moved to the morning drive, 5:30–10 am local time after the "Rise Guys" left for a gig in San Francisco. At the same time, Don also ended his in-studio presence on Good Day Sacramento. He now occasionally contributes to GDS remotely via camera.[8] On July 8, 2013, Geronimo's show moved to the midday slot on KHTK and can now be heard from noon to 3:00 pm local time.[9]

As of Friday October 4, 2013, The Don Geronimo Show has been replaced by the Jason Ross show on CBS Sports Radio 1140 KHTK. A caller asked what happened, and Jason Ross simply explained, "CBS Sports Radio decided to go in another direction, which is sports. Don Geronimo is still employed by CBS Sports Radio." On October 16, 2013, Don went on the air on KHTK in Sacramento to thank those who supported him during his time in Sacramento. He said he was going to be doing a new project with CBS in the near future and it would be announced via his Twitter feed. On October 23, Don appeared on 106.7 The Fan's "Lavar and Dukes" show to announce his return to the station after five years, where he would appear weekdays from 7–10 p.m. local time, Saturdays from 9 a.m.–noon local time, and during Washington Redskins pre/post game shows as well. On March 1, 2014, Geronimo will no longer be heard on WJFK anymore. He announced on his Twitter feed that "No one should be shocked I'm not in the plans for CBS/dc. I had opined recently on air how I didn't understand the logic. Now 30 more days."[10]

Radio history[edit]

Don has worked at the following stations:[4]

Number Date Station City
1 1973 WRWC Rockton, IL
2 1974 WGEZ Beloit, WI
3 1974 WYFE Rockford, IL
4 1974 WNAM Oshkosh, WI
5 1975 WOKY Milwaukee, WI
6 1975 WROK (AM) Rockford, IL
7 1976 WKTQ "13Q" Pittsburgh, PA
8 1977 WXLO "99X" New York City, NY
9 1978 WGBF Evansville, IN
10 1978 WCAO Baltimore, MD
11 1978 WWDC-AM Washington, DC
12 1978 WPRO-FM Providence, RI
13 1980 WNDE Indianapolis, IN
14 1980 KIIS-FM Indianapolis, IN
15 WDRQ Detroit, MI
16 1979 - 1981 WPGC Washington, DC
17 1982 KIIS-FM Los Angeles, CA
18 1982 KFI Los Angeles, CA[11]
19 1982 WLS-FM Chicago, IL[11]
20 WBZZ "B94" Pittsburgh, PA
21 WBBM-FM "B96" Chicago, IL
22 March 1985–1991 WAVA Washington, DC[12]
23 1991–April 2008
October 24, 2013–February 26, 2014
WJFK-FM Washington, DC.[13][14][15][16]
24 July 7, 2008–? WOCM Ocean City, MD[17]
25 June 22, 2009–October 13, 2009 WGMD Rehoboth Beach, DE.[6]
26 June 2010–October 3, 2013 KHTK Sacramento, CA[18]
27 April 2014 RELM Sacramento, CA[19]

Geronimo first appeared on air part-time on WINX in Rockville, Maryland in 1971.[3] In November, December 2009, Geronimo filled shifts on WCBS-FM in New York City.[20]

Acting[edit]

Don has appeared in The Adventures of Brisco County, Jr., Babylon 5 and The King of Queens. He is a member of the Screen Actors Guild.[clarification needed] He has stated on several occasions on the Don and Mike Show that he and his partner at that time, Mike O'Meara, spoke without authorization during their Babylon 5 taping, which was supposed to have been a non-speaking role for each. Rather than re-shoot the scene, the show's producers arranged for their union memberships. This paved the way for a speaking role on King of Queens, where he spoke one line, "Lookin' good, Heffernan!" He has also co-hosted with Marty Bass post-game coverage of the Baltimore Ravens games for WJZ-TV (Channel 13).

Personal life[edit]

Family[edit]

Don married Janet Sorce on March 21, 2009[21] and has one son (Bart Sorce) and one daughter from previous marriages. He currently lives in an A-frame in Elk Grove, California.

Don's former wife, Freda, died on July 10, 2005 in an automobile accident on Maryland Route 90 near Ocean City, Maryland, where the Sorces had their vacation home. Freda was a frequent caller to the Don and Mike Show and her spirited interaction with Don was an integral part of the show. Don was on hiatus from the show until August 1, 2005, when he returned to the air with an emotional solo broadcast.[13][22]

On Friday, October 22, 2010, during the Don Geronimo live stage show Don slipped and fell off the stage. Don suffered head trauma and was admitted to a local hospital and later transferred to ICU.[23]

Controversy[edit]

In 1994, Geronimo and his then radio partner Mike O'Meara were sued for $35 million by an anonymous University of Maryland student who claimed the pair had violated her privacy and inflicted emotional distress.[24] In her suit, the woman claimed to have met Geronimo at an event at the Virginia radio station and agreed to meet him later at another location, where she and the married Geronimo kissed and he fondled her.[24] However, when she refused Geronimo's further sexual advances, he became angry and she was made to wait in his car while he sexually satisfied himself by masturbating.[24] Also named in the suit were station manager Ken Stevens, the show's traffic reporter and producer.[24][25]

In June 1995, Sorce was arrested by undercover officers of the Fairfax County Police Department for attempting to buy 1.7 grams of cocaine.[26] Sorce entered a guilty plea but was allowed deferred adjudication and was sentenced to one year's probation by Fairfax Circuit Court judge David T. Stitt on March 20, 1996 while he sought treatment for his addiction.[26]

On August 5, 1998, Sorce was stopped by police for a moving violation in Great Falls, Virginia when he was observed driving his 1997 Toyota Supra at 75 miles per hour on a road where the speed limit was 35 miles per hour.[27] The arresting officer smelled marijuana in Sorce's car, and a search by a drug sniffing dog revealed an eyeglass case containing an aspirin bottle with 4.6 grams of marijuana inside, at which time he was arrested and charged with possession of marijuana and driving under the influence of a narcotic, spending the night in the Fairfax County Adult Detention Center.[27][28] Sorce pleaded guilty to a charge of reckless driving and was found guilty of marijuana possession by Judge Lorraine Nordlund in Fairfax General District Court on December 2, 1998.[27] Although Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney Mark C. Simmons asked that Sorce be jailed, as this was his second drug conviction, Judge Nordlund instead suspended Sorce's driver's license for six months, gave him a 30-day suspended jail sentence, and sentenced him to a year of probation.[27][29]

In May 2007, a Leesburg, Virginia man named Carl Grossman, who had once been a frequent caller to the Don and Mike Show, pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of stalking. Geronimo had received a letter from the man which contained threats to himself and his family. The judge also issued a lifetime restraining order in the case.[30]

Retirement and Return[edit]

On February 4, 2008, Don announced his retirement from his radio show to pursue his personal life for a while. His last appearance on the Don and Mike Show was Friday, April 11, 2008 with Mike O'Meara to continue the show after that (as the Mike O'Meara Show). Don was widely expected to return to radio in some form in the future.[14][15]

After only 2 months in retirement, Geronimo announced that he would return to the air on WOCM, a small, independently owned radio station in Ocean City, Maryland. Don Geronimo's Rockin' Soul Show aired weekdays from 1 pm - 3pm featuring popular music from the 1970s and 1980s. After 4 weeks, Geronimo left the station.[31][32]

In May 2010, Geronimo announced that beginning June 21, he would be returning to KHTK, a station which formerly syndicated the Don and Mike Show, to host a mid-day show.[18]

As of Friday October 4, 2013, The Don Geronimo Show has been replaced by the Jason Ross show on CBS Sports Radio 1140 KHTK. Don would return to the airwaves several days later to explain that KHTK decided to go with all sports programming, but that he would return to a CBS Radio station soon.[33]

Don Geronimo returned to WJFK on October 24, 2013. His sports-oriented show aired weekdays from 7-10pm and on Saturdays from 9:00am to noon. Initially, he broadcast the show from a studio at CBS Radio's main building in Sacramento at Commerce Circle, then from a studio at his home in Sacramento when CBS internal politics prevented the show from being done at the company's building. Co-hosts for the show were located at WJFK's studios in Lanham, Maryland. While it was intended that Geronimo would move to the Washington area to do the show live at WJFK's studios, this never materialized after frequent preemptions and schedule changes. Geronimo announced on his Twitter feed on March 1, 2014 that he will no longer be heard on WJFK. His last show was February 26, 2014.

On April 1, 2014, Geronimo began broadcasting a new show, entitled "The Don Geronimo Show," via podcast on the RELM Network. The show airs live weekdays from 3:00pm until 5:00pm ET. The show is a commercial-free, uncensored, subscription-based podcast that listeners can stream live or download for offline listening after the show airs. The show was announced on Twitter as "the show I always wanted to do."

References[edit]

  1. ^ Browne, edited by Ray B.; Browne, Pat (2000). Defining concise guide to United States popular culture. Bowling Green, OH: Bowling Green State University Popular Press. p. 659. ISBN 0-87972-821-3. 
  2. ^ "Stations Sort Through Syndicating Glut". Billboard: 84. September 4, 1993. 
  3. ^ a b c Shapiro, Leonard; Pollin, Andy (2008). "Andy's Top Washington Radio Legends". The Great Book of Washington, D.C. Sports Lists. Running Press. p. 157. ISBN 978-0-7624-3356-8. Don Geronimo (real name Mike Source [sic]) was a boy wonder on local radio, starting out at WINX at the age of 13. 
  4. ^ a b c d "The Don Geronimo Show – June 13, 2011" (audio). CBS Sacramento. Retrieved 2011-08-04. 
  5. ^ Fisher, Marc (2007). "Magic". Something in the Air: Radio, Rock, and the Revolution That Shaped a Generation. p. 314. ISBN 978-0-375-50907-0. Geronimo was so fascinated by radio as a boy in Rockville, Maryland... 
  6. ^ a b Fisher, Marc (2008-02-24). "After Good Times and Bad, Geronimo Says It's Beach Time". Washington Post. Retrieved 2008-02-27. 
  7. ^ Geronimo, Don (2009-12-26). "Thanks for all the great support.". Twitter. Retrieved 2009-12-26. 
  8. ^ 'Rise Guys' leave KHTK for S.F. station - Sacramento Living - Sacramento Food and Wine, Home, Health | Sacramento Bee
  9. ^ "KHTK Retools, Don Geronimo Back To Middays; Doug Lazy Moves To Afternoons At KSFM". All Access. July 1, 2013. 
  10. ^ Don Geronimo (1 Mar 2014). "No one should be shocked I'm not in the plans for CBS/dc. I had opined recently on air how I didn't understand the logic. Now 30 more days w". Twitter. 
  11. ^ a b "Vox Jox". Billboard: 23. August 28, 1982. 
  12. ^ "Vox Jox". Billboard. March 30, 1985. 
  13. ^ a b Farhi, Paul (2005-08-02). "Don Geronimo's Grief-Stricken Solo". Washington Post. Retrieved 2007-10-01. 
  14. ^ a b Rowland, Kara (2008-02-05). "Don Geronimo to leave talk-radio show". Washington Times. Retrieved 2008-02-05. 
  15. ^ a b "Legendary Don Geronimo to Exit WJFK-FM on May 30". Radio Online. 2008-02-05. Archived from the original on 2008-05-04. Retrieved 2008-02-05. 
  16. ^ "Don Geronimo Returns to D.C. Radio". CBS DC. October 23, 2013. 
  17. ^ "Irie Radio Lands Big Fish For Afternoon Show". Ocean City Dispatch. July 4, 2008. 
  18. ^ a b Tong, Anna (May 26, 2010). "KHTK's Geronimo on move to Sacramento: 'I love it here'". Sacramento Bee. 
  19. ^ "Geronimo moves to Online Radio: 'Geronimo looks forward to doing the show he’s always wanted to do'". Talkers.com. March 19, 2014. 
  20. ^ "Don Geronimo on WCBS-FM 101.1 NYC Weekends". New York State Broadcasters Association. 2009-11-24. Archived from the original on 2010-01-17. Retrieved 2013-10-25. 
  21. ^ "Don Geronimo and Janet Anniversary".  TV Announcement
  22. ^ "Wife of Popular Radio Host Killed in Crash". WBOC-TV. 2005-07-11. Retrieved 2007-06-24. 
  23. ^ Radio Ink Magazine
  24. ^ a b c d Yorke, Jeffrey (8 November 1994). "Geronimo and O'Meara Sued". The Washington Post. Retrieved 11 August 2011. 
  25. ^ "Vox Jox". Billboard. November 19, 1994. 
  26. ^ a b Gerhart, Ann; Groer, Annie (1996-03-22). "The Reliable Source: Probation for Geronimo". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2013-09-18. 
  27. ^ a b c d Jackman, Tom (1998-12-03). "Geronimo Guilty Of Drug Charge; Radio Host to Be Sentenced Today for Marijuana Possession". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2013-10-24. 
  28. ^ Fisher, Marc; Masters, Brooke A. (1998-08-12). "Geronimo arrested on drug charges after stop". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2007-07-20. 
  29. ^ Jackman, Tom (1998-12-04). "Don Geronimo Gets Suspended Sentence". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2013-10-25. 
  30. ^ "Jail Time For Man Who Threatened Geronimo". Retrieved 2007-05-29. 
  31. ^ "In Brief". FMQB. August 5, 2008. Retrieved 2008-08-06. 
  32. ^ Schoenberger, John (August 4, 2008). "Geronimo Exits WOCM". Radio and Records. 
  33. ^ Simon, Perry Michael (Oct 16, 2013). "Don Geronimo Says Goodbye To KHTK Listeners". All Access. 

External links[edit]