Bill Evanov, President and CEO of Evanov Communications Inc., will be celebrated for his achievements and contributions to Canada’s musical heritage with an induction to the Canadian Music and Broadcast Industry Hall of Fame. He will be honoured on Thursday, March 10, 2011 during the Broadcast Industry Awards gala at Canadian Music Week in Toronto. Previous inductees include: Gordon Lightfoot, David Foster, The Guess Who, Alanis Morissette, Allan Waters, Tom Cochrane, Ronnie Hawkins and Rush… to name a few.
  Bill Evanov is the Founder and President of Evanov Communications Inc., one of Canada’s fastest growing independent broadcast companies. A true entrepreneur, Evanov went from owning 3 radio stations in Toronto to 11 across the country in a span of just six years and in an age where independent radio ownership has drastically declined due to the consolidation of large corporate multi-chain broadcasters, he has stood firm and bucked the trend. It is one thing to operate radio stations, it is another to be hugely successful doing so, especially in major markets where competition from the large corporations is extreme.

Years ago, when a young Bill Evanov decided to get into radio, he knocked on the doors of CHUM, CFRB, CKEY, CKFH, CFGM, CHIC and CHFI; but was rejected by all due to lack of experience. As fortune would have it, Johnny Lombardi gave him an opportunity at CHIN Radio, a relatively unknown station at the time, and within 18 months Evanov became Vice President Sales.

Johnny Lombardi and Mel Lastman hosted the First Annual “Spaghetti Dig in Contest” of which Evanov became the Chief Organizer. He subsequently morphed this event into the highly successful CHIN International Picnic, which has remained a staple event in Toronto over the last 30 years and known the world over by the Guinness Book of World Records as the largest event of its kind.
Among his many accomplishments, Evanov created several unique, non cookie-cutter formats including: The Evanov CHR/Dance format which delivers a variety of different genres of rhythmic music – Pop, Rock, Hip-hop, R&B and Dance; The Jewel’s “Light Adult Contemporary” format blending soft, melodic music in a variety of genres from different eras; and in 2007 he launched CIRR-FM known as Proud FM, the world’s first of its kind, that programs to Toronto’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) population.
Evanov is one of the only independent broadcasters left in the country’s largest markets. He is the founder of the famed Summer Rush Concert – the largest annual live concert produced by a radio broadcaster in Canada. Summer Rush, in its 18th year, is a platform for many local artists to perform to a sold-out crowd and is now produced in Halifax as well as Toronto.
Bill Evanov “walks the walk” everyday in support of Canadian music. He has opened the door for independent Canadian musical artists at ALL Evanov stations across the country which has often resulted in being the first to recognize and play fresh new Canadian talent.
Among some of the more notable successes who received first radio airplay radio airplay in the respective market of each Evanov station, are Michael Buble, Shawn Desman (Juno ’06 winner), Danny Fernandes (MMVA winner & Juno nominee), DJ Danny D (half a million CDs sold & Juno nominee), Massari (MMVA winner & Juno nominee), The Sound Bluntz (’03 & ’04 Juno winner), Joee (Juno nominee), Addictiv (Juno nominee), Love Inc. (Juno winner), BKS’s “Rock Em Sock Em Techno” (550,000 copies sold). The stations provided extensive airplay, far exceeding other stations to promote Richard Abel, Amy Sky, Mark Jordan, Jann Arden, Holly Cole, Jesse Cook, Molly Johnson, k.d. lang, Chantal Chamberland, and Serena Ryder.
Bill Evanov strongly supports education with over a million dollars through a series of scholarships and endowments. Some of the partner university and college institutions include Waterloo, Acadia, King’s, Dalhousie, Carlton, Guelph, Sherbrooke, Humber, Western and the University of Manitoba. He is also committed to the Aboriginal Media Fund that encourages, promotes and makes possible the development of aboriginal talent.
ECI radio holdings are both responsive and proactive in the communities they serve. For example, ECI was, the original and still is, the media partner of the Student Crime Stoppers Program, a partnership between the public, the police and the media.
With an enterprising spirit, he has blazed trails and achieved a roster of firsts and milestones in independent radio. He defined dance music as a unique radio format when he re-launched CING FM as Energy 108 in 1990 and took it from 90,000 to over 800,000 weekly listeners (FALL 95 BBM) making it the most popular radio station among teens and young adults. He then recreated the format on CIDC FM and grew it into the #1 CHR station in the country with 853,000 listeners. (BBM S2’09)
ECI is the first broadcaster in Canadian history to elevate female employees to ownership status through new radio license acquisitions.
His “Move Like Lightning” and “Just Do It-Make it Happen” philosophy has guided the company to stand strong in the stiffest competition and his extremely tenacious approach and street-fighter attitude have extended to the team he has carefully assembled over the years.
Despite a recent recession where the broadcast industry witnessed hundreds of layoffs and millions of dollars in cut-backs, Evanov managed not only to keep his staff of over 300 employees intact, he maintained the tradition of flying every single employee from across the country to the head office in Toronto for the company’s annual Christmas party.
Evanov sits as a board member with the Ontario Association of Broadcasters and holds membership with several other broadcast organizations. He raises thousands of dollars every year for dozens of charity initiatives including “Boating for the Cure”, an event he personally spearheads within the company that raises thousands of dollars every year for prostate and breast cancer.
Bill Evanov is an entrepreneur and a pioneer. His contribution to the Canadian broadcast industry is considerable and bound to continue.
Tickets for the Canadian Music and Broadcast Industry Awards Gala Dinner are available for purchase through the Canadian Music Week website at http://www.cmw.net.
Canadian Music Week is Canada’s leading annual entertainment event dedicated to the expression and growth of the country’s music, media and entertainment industries. Combining four information-intensive conferences; a trade exposition; a film festival; three awards shows and the nation’s largest New Music Festival – Canadian Music Fest – CMW spans a five-day period from March 9 to March 13, 2011 at the Fairmont Royal York Hotel and various downtown Toronto venues, attracting participants from across the globe. For more information, visit http://www.cmw.net.