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City of license Charleston, West Virginia
Broadcast area Kanawha Valley
Branding "Radio 58 WCHS"
Slogan "The Voice of Charleston"
Frequency 580 kHz
First air date 1927
Format News/Talk/Sports
Power 5,000 Watts day and night
Class B
Facility ID 71660
Transmitter coordinates 38°21′51.0″N 81°46′5.0″W / 38.364167°N 81.768056°W / 38.364167; -81.768056
Callsign meaning W CHarleSton
Affiliations ABC News, West Virginia MetroNews
Owner West Virginia Radio Corporation
(West Virginia Radio Corporation of Charleston)
Webcast WCHS Webstream
Website WCHS Online

WCHS is a News/Talk/Sports formatted broadcast radio station licensed to Charleston, West Virginia, serving the Kanawha Valley. WCHS is owned and operated by West Virginia Radio Corporation.


Its programming is typical of AM talk stations, consisting of local political and sports shows, Rush Limbaugh, Dave Ramsey, Kim Komando, and coverage of baseball games of the Cincinnati Reds.

The station carries extensive local programming, including the Morning News with Chris Lawrence and Jennifer Smith, the Statewide Talkline with Hoppy Kercheval and 58Live with Rick Johnson and Michael Agnello. On January 7, 2013 WCHS moved 58Live to the 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. timeslot, replacing it with Metro News Hotline hosted by Dave Weekly. Previously, Rick Johnson, a veteran of WCHS, hosted the popular radio show along Agnello, however, Rick Johnson was let go due to cutbacks at the station. Rick Johnson is now employed by WOWK Channel 13. 58Live is no longer running on WCHS.[1]

WVU sports play-by-play announcer Tony Caridi[2] hosts the Statewide Sportsline from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m.[3]

The station is no longer co-owned with WCHS-TV located in the same market.

News Operation[edit]

WCHS is a major news organization in Charleston. Anchors deliver on-air newscasts twice an hour during the early morning through evening. While local newscasts do not run at night, national news from ABC does, and local reporters will cut into programming to deliver breaking news when needed.

WCHS operates as the main news engine for West Virginia MetroNews a statewide radio network with more than 50 affiliates.[4] Reporters at WCHS send out newscasts every hour to MetroNews affiliates throughout West Virginia. Reporters at other MetroNews stations, such as WAJR in Morgantown, file reports to the network as well. However, WCHS reporters anchor the statewide newscasts.

Jeff Jenkins, the news director at WCHS, is among the mostly highly respected reporters in West Virginia.[5] Jenkins is particularly well known for his reporting on state politics and the state legislature, along with Hoppy Kercheval.[6] During the 60-day legislative session Jenkins and Kercheval spend much of their time at the Capitol reporting. Jenkins files a daily "Capitol Report" every day of the session for the MetroNews Network. Kercheval often broadcasts his talk show from the Capitol rotunda.

Jenkins, Chris Lawrence, and reporter Shauna Johnson are routinely awarded the state's top recognition for news coverage from the West Virginia Broadcaster's Association.[7] Unlike many radio news organization that focus nearly exclusively on on-air reports, WCHS and MetroNews reporters write in-depth copy for online readers.[8]

Lawrence is known statewide not only for his reporting, but also for his Outdoors talk show, which focuses on hunting and fishing in the Mountain State.[9] Lawrence commonly talks with anglers, hunters, and experts about the outdoors, and maintains a website dedicated to those topics.[10] With his distinct dialect and accent, Lawrence possesses one of the most recognizable voices in West Virginia.


WCHS has won numerous regional and national awards recognizing the station's news department. In 2011, the news team won a national Edward R. Murrow Award for breaking news coverage.[11] The award came from the station's coverage of the Upper Big Branch Mine Disaster in Montcoal, W.Va.[12]

The news team won a national Murrow Award in 2007 for continuing coverage of the Sago Mine disaster.[13]

WCHS radio news has also won numerous regional Murrow Awards, including a 2011 award for coverage of Sen. Robert C. Byrd's death.[14]

WCHS was one of five stations nominated by the National Association of Broadcasters for the 2011 Marconi Award for news/talk station of the year.[15]


External links[edit]