Mike Cleaver





Announcer/news/engineer CKOV Kelowna 1961-67;

announcer/radio & TV news/engineer CJOC Lethbridge 1967-71;

news CHUM Toronto 1972-76;

morning news/engineer CJCA/CIRK-FM Edmonton 1976-84;

news/assignment editor CHUM Toronto 1984-95;

evening news CFRB Toronto 1995-97;

pm drive news CFTR Toronto 1997-99;

morning news/assistant news director/news room engineer CHUM Group Ottawa 1999-2001;

news/business reporter CJNW Vancouver 2001;

news CKNW Vancouver 2001-current;

consultant Mike Cleaver Broadcast Services current


above from vancouverbroadcasters.com



The following from Mike:


Actually I was 14 when I started in radio. It was Christmas Eve, 1961 and it was at CKOV in Kelowna where I worked until April '67, learning everything I could about the business.


The only thing I haven't done is sales.


In May of 1967, I went to CJOC in Lethbridge where I started to specialize in news while still working as a jock. I also did TV news there before moving to CKXL in Calgary to do news with Dale O'Hara in '71.


Morning news CKXL Calgary 1971-72;


That's when I was scouted by Dick Smyth at CHUM, where I remained until '76.


I went to CJCA in Edmonton after that for 7 years.


Then back to CHUM Toronto for 11 years, a couple of years at CFRB and a couple of years at CFTR/680 News.


I was then recruited by CHUM Group Ottawa (1999-2001) as morning news anchor/assistant news director and designer of the newsroom facility in the new building which houses four radio and one TV station.


I've worked at NW2 as and anchor and business reporter in 2001 but was let go with everyone else when Hayes shut it down. I was later re-hired to work in the CKNW newsroom. Let go in November 2005.


Torontoís 680 is a happening place.

But some veterans of radio news who found themselves part of the 680 News tapestry in the past would beg to differ.

"Things changed while I was there," says Mike Cleaver. A longtime CHUM employee (he now works for their Ottawa stations), Mr. Cleaver moved to 680 from CFRB ("the worst experience of my professional career") in 1998. "They went from being a well-rounded news source to what we always joked was turning into 'Sex-Eighty' News.

"It's like a sausage factory. There would be 35 minutes to fill during each hour, even with all the breaks. And with no support staff, either. I was given the stories by an editor in raw form, and you had to sit there and clean them up the best you could.

"Anywhere else," explains Mr. Cleaver, "if you're hired as a news anchor you make your own decisions, you build your own show. At 680, I'd be handed a script and told in what segment to make it fit. I'd be forced to turn three messy pages into 30 seconds."

Mr. Cleaver blames the station's cutback in the number of field reporters, a lack of morale and a "draining" daily grind for spoiling his high hopes for 680 News. He fled after 18 months.

"They want to appeal to the business guys knocking off work on Bay Street at 5 p.m., but the editors would insist we focus on some actress who doesn't shave her armpit hair," Mr. Cleaver complains.

Nov 6/99 national post




BC Radio History