|Slogan||La emisora diferente ("The different station")|
|First air date||December 1953|
|Power||5,000 watts day|
1,000 watts critical hours
|Former call signs||WDON (1953–1981)|
|Owner||Alejandro Carrasco |
(AC Acquisitions, LLC)
WACA is a radio station broadcasting on 1540 kHz in the mediumwave AM band. It is a Spanish language news and talk station broadcasting as Radio America. Its transmitter is located in Wheaton, Maryland and it serves the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area. WACA has a daytime transmitter power of 5,000 watts, reaching as far north as Frederick County in Maryland and as far south as Stafford and Prince William Counties in Virginia. WACA's signal is also available (via a special SCA receiver) on a subcarrier of WASH.
According to FCC records, the FCC license for WACA expired on October 1, 2019 because of unresolved equal employment violation issues. The station continues to broadcast in spite of loss of operating authority.
Alejandro Carrasco is the station's owner-operator. A native of the Dominican Republic, he came to the United States in the 1970s. While attending Montgomery College in 1979, he worked as a DJ at student parties and master of ceremonies at weddings. The news staff at 1540 AM (then Radio Mundo, WMDO) discovered him at a wedding, and hired him as an anchor in 1983. Carrasco later moved to Radio Borinquen (now Radio Viva, WCLM 900 AM in Laurel), rising to be general manager, and then returned to WACA to begin a 30-minute morning show, Calentando la Mañana (Heating Up the Morning) in 1987. Carrasco leased WACA and its transmitter in 1997, and then bought the station when the lease expired in 2000, naming it "Radio America."
1540 began as WDON, originally a rock and roll station in the 1950s which morphed to country music in the early 1960s with the move of Stan Karas who had been at WARL in Arlington, a country station named for the son of its then-owner, Don Dillard. In the 1970s, it was an oldies station, and then briefly "Disco D-O-N". After that, it converted to Spanish, first as WMDO, "Radio Mundo", and then with the current WACA call sign.
The call letters WACA previously were assigned to an AM station in Camden, South Carolina. It began broadcasting July 18, 1949, on 1590 kHz with 1 KW power (daytime). The station was owned by Camden Broadcasting Corporation.
WMDO radio was co-owned by Los Terezos Television Co. with the Washington market's first Univision television station, which signed on in 1989. The TV station took the callsign WMDO in 1995 and still uses it today as WMDO-CD.
- "FCC History Cards for WACA". CDBS Public Access Database. FCC Media Bureau. Retrieved June 3, 2018.
- "Wellness Through Media". Archived from the original on 3 October 2006. Retrieved 17 February 2007.
- "Washington DC/Baltimore Area AM Radio". Archived from the original on 3 February 2007. Retrieved 17 February 2007.
- Williams, Krissah; Farhi, Paul (3 July 2006). "Spanish-Language Radio's Big Voice". The Washington Post. Retrieved 17 February 2007.
- "Washington, D.C. AM Station History". Retrieved 17 February 2007.
- "WACA Camden, S.C., Opens with 1 KW Day" (PDF). Broadcasting. July 19, 1949. Retrieved 26 December 2014.
- Query the FCC's AM station database for WACA
- Radio-Locator Information on WACA
- Query Nielsen Audio's AM station database for WACA