Kindred Communications’ Cecilia Bowen wins West Virginia radio personality of the year

HUNTINGTON – Cecilia Bowen was named radio personality of the year at the 2021 West Virginia Broadcasters Association Excellence in Broadcasting Awards ceremony.

Bowen is the program director and midday personality for Kindred Communication’s WMGA 97.9 the River. During her 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. shift she hosts contests and features such as Takeout Trivia and “Vacay in May,” where the station is giving away a vacation every week in the month of May.


“When my name was announced, I was speechless and then I was screaming and laughing and crying,” Bowen said.  “It is a great feeling to be recognized at that level.  I try to connect with The River listeners like friends and share my life journey with them while playing music they like.  I want my listeners to view me like a friend.”

“It is awesome to work for Kindred, a broadcast company that is embedded in the community and still views the primary purpose of local radio as serving their local listeners.”

Bowen is the only radio personality or station from Huntington to be recognized at this year’s WVBA Awards. This is the second time Bowen has won this award, previously winning it in 2011.

Mike Kirtner, owner and president of Kindred Communications, said Bowen is very deserving of this award.

“Cecilia is what local broadcasting is all about. She’s in tune with her listeners. She has fun, she’s happy, she’s always excited to be on the air,” Kirtner said. “I couldn’t be more proud of her and I’m glad to see her being recognized by her peers.”

Kindred Communications has won 10 West Virginia Broadcasters Association awards since 2017 including 2017 Country Radio Station of the Year and 2018 Legendary Station of the Year for WDGG 93.7 the Dawg. Once a station has won Legendary Station of the Year it is no longer eligible to receive the award again. WXBW Big Buck Country 101.5 was Country Radio Station of the Year in 2020. WCMI 92.7 & 98.5 the Planet won best Rock Station in 2018 and 2019.  

Kirtner won the 2018 Mel Burka Distinguished Broadcaster Award.

Locally owned and operated Kindred Communications is made up of six radio stations and nine signals including WDGG 93.7 the Dawg, WCMI 92.7 & 98.5 the Planet, WMGA 97.9 the River, WXBW Big Buck Country 101.5, WRVC 94.1 FM & AM 930 and Cat Sports 93.3 FM & AM 1340, as well as The Insider magazine and Kindred Digital.