My guest today is Valerie Alker, a name local listeners to WGCU will remember, because she was a longtime reporter and host on our airwaves. Val got started in radio in 1983 as a DJ at WPAS AM 1600 in Zephyrhills. From there she moved onto WMNF Community Radio in Tampa where she often hosted the Women’s Show. She then moved over to WUSF, where she was a reporter and newsreader, before moving down this way to work at WSFP after spending a year or so as a boat bum. Then, once Florida Gulf Coast University was built in the late 90s WSFP became WGCU and Val was part of the team that launched it. I had the pleasure of working with her starting in 2003 when I started as an intern, all the way through when I left radio for a while in 2011. She lives in Punta Gorda with her super cool husband Coop. From what I can tell via Facebook they pretty much spend their time birding and paddling and traveling to neat places…living the pleasantly retired life. It’s quite surreal to be sitting down in the studio with Val again.
Above: Interview with full music
Below: Short version