Alan Chartock, WAMC’s president and CEO, calls it a career


ALBANY — WAMC Northeast Public Radio President and CEO Dr. Alan Chartock announced his retirement yesterday after more than four decades at the station.

The 81-year-old announced the news through the station’s website yesterday, adding that it’s time for a new group of leaders to take the helm. Stacey Rosenberry, Director of Operations and Engineering, was later named the organization’s Interim Chief Executive Officer.

Chartock with acclaimed singer-performer Harry Belafonte (Photo by WAMC / Facebook)

“Alan just has this desire to share and inform and engage people in the news of the day. It’s been incredible to learn the ins and outs of high-level, fast-paced journalism with Alan as a mentor,” said Ian Pickus, WAMC’s News Director, who has been with the station since 2008. “Alan allows us to grow while holding us – and our work – to incredibly high standards. We will all miss his daily insights and guidance, but we stand on the solid foundation he built.”

The upcoming summer fund drive will be in tribute to Chartock’s accomplishments in shaping the station’s success. He said he intends to remain with the station to help it through the leadership transition.

Alan Chartock. (Photo by Leif Zurmuhlen)

“While we are incredibly sorry to see him leave the leadership of WAMC, he has more than earned the right to step down and relax a bit,” said Dorothy H. Reynolds, Chair of the WAMC Board of Trustees. “While Alan’s retirement is effective immediately, he has assured us he stands ready to continue to help in any way we might need his support.”

Chartock was a 39-year-old political science professor at the State University of New York at New Paltz who led a successful legislative internship program and launched the Legislative Gazette newspaper when he took the reins of WAMC in 1981. At the time, the Albany Medical College held the license and decided to hand over the FM signal that it had used for in-house medical lectures.

A WAMC news reporter interview Albany County Executive Daniel McCoy. (Photo by WAMC / Facebook)

Shortly after taking the helm, Chartock launched the station’s first fund drive – going on air and putting out the SOS — asking the community to “Save Our Station.” His vision for the station’s programming led to the creation of numerous shows, many of which are carried by public radio stations around the country.

Chartock created and hosted “The Capitol Connection,” a weekly show engaging New York leaders in conversation about the topics of the day. He conducted weekly interviews with then-Governor Mario Cuomo for 12 years. He subsequently authored “Me and Mario,” a compilation of those interviews along with his reflections on his conversations with Cuomo.

Additionally, he created “The Congressional Corner,” interviewing dozens of local congressional leaders from the WAMC listening area. He launched “The Media Project” and “The Roundtable” and offered commentary each day during “Morning Edition.” Alan has also served as executive producer of a number of National Productions programs.

The WAMC radio crew. (Photo by WAMC / Facebook)

In recent years, Chartock pursued substantial investment in infrastructure modernization, the addition of online streaming, podcasts, and audience outreach via social media to ensure WAMC continues to expand its capacity to meet its audience wherever or however they are tuning in. Station programming now operates in 29 locations throughout the region.

Although Chartock calls Great Barrington home, he said he was proud to keep WAMC in the heart of Albany and worked to expand the community’s arts and music capacity by building The Linda, WAMC’s performing arts center, across from the station’s studios on Central Avenue in Albany. In 2021, the Board named 318 Central the “Alan S. Chartock Broadcasting Center” in honor of his contributions to the station.

“As I reflect on over 40 years of service to the creation and development of WAMC, I feel it is time for me to turn things over,” Chartock said. “This has been the journey of a lifetime and I have loved every minute, every challenge and every opportunity for growth this work has afforded me. But it’s time to let a new crop of leaders take the helm and I have every confidence that the Board and staff will more than rise to the occasion.”

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