ACRAs Finalists Fever – #9

Staff Writer

There are thousands of hard-working, dedicated and amazingly creative people throughout the radio industry – and every year a small fraction of those people make the short list as a finalist in the ACRAs.

Just like we did last year, over the next few weeks, Radio Today will shine a spotlight on the best of the best.

Today we feature Annie Hugo, Dale Sharp and Liam Ftizgerald  

Let’s Roll Out the Red Carpet….The ACRAs Finalists Fever – counting down the days to the big event on October 10 by profiling the finalists across all categories. You can get involved by emailing us here.



Annie Hugo; Triple M, Melbourne VIC, Southern Cross Austereo

Radio, the career.. where did it begin..

As a kid I used to be obsessed with SAFM in Adelaide. I would follow the Black Thunders around the streets every weekend & call up for every contest (but I would always use my alias ‘Tina’). I knew I was destined for radio so it wasn’t surprising that I ended up at SCA as my first job! I started as a coordinator then progressed to an Account Manager after 12 months & have been an Account Manager for the last 3 and a half years. 

Best part of your job….

I get to meet lots of amazing people PLUS I get to work in a fast paced, energetic & motivating environment!

Biggest achievement is the last 12 months… 

I got nominated for the Media Vic Radio Sales Rep of the year in November. 

You get the ACRA, what’s your speech..

I would thank all the staff at SCA that help me every day. The Account Manager role is not a one man show, so I am thankful for all the amazing human resources at SCA who allow me to be the best I can be!


Radio Datacast; Dale Sharp, Mix FM & Sea FM, Maroochydore QLD, EON Broadcasting NM

Where did you start Dale..

I started off at Star 106.9 as the IT admin and trainee tech trained by Andrew Chapman then moved on 4GR/CFM Toowoomba, Hot 91.1, SCA Perth, 4BC/4BH then finally back home to EON at Mix and SEA fm working with the best people in radio.

Best part of the job…

Would be the people, Doing technical things nobody has done before.
Being an Engineer is a lot different than most of the staff.. you’re the one that gives the station its own sonic signature.

Tell us about your entry in Engineering Excellence..

Charles Darwin said “it’s not the strongest of the species that survives but the most adaptable” and In this digital age radio needs adapt to new methods of engaging with listeners.
This is exactly what Radio-datacast does.
Radio-Datacast is a system which can run on a Raspberry PI; a $50 computer running Linux operating system. Additionally it is scalable to install on larger Linux based servers for use by larger radio networks.

The system will display information to the listener such as:

  • Title and Artist of song that is currently playing
  • Current temperatures for your coverage area
  • Current Traffic accidents and issues
  • Current power outages (currently only available in QLD)
  • Twitter – station and announcer outbound “tweets”
  • This allows announcers to engage with listeners via their radio screens

 Hot Tomato are now also running the software and loving it!


Liam Fitzgerald; 3YB, Warrnambool VIC, ACE Radio Broadcasters C

Tell us how you got your start..

My background in radio is very short, this is my first commercial radio job since completing Swinburne’s Diploma of Arts in Commercial Radio under Jim Barbour.

That was back in 2005, its taken me to this year to get into radio after pursuing other things since.

I have been working here for four years, and this is my third ACRA nomination, so for that i am incredibly honored.

Tell us about your entry…

It was very hard to fit the entirety of my role into 60 seconds, but i thought it was important to show the range of sports people i get to interview, display the variety of things i do in my role, and of course display how i go about my job.

Here’s your moment… the speech.. go..

Couldn’t accept the award award without acknowledging the great people i work with everyday. The team at 3YB/Coast FM in Warrnambool, they are all so talented, and we work hard to make sure we do the best we can for the community.

Special thanks to Lois Chislett who has helped me develop over the years in the news room, and to Jon Vertigan for being a great mentor in presenting sport shows on air and helping me improve, and to Peter Headen our General Manager, one of the best blokes, and bosses i’ll ever have the privilege to work under.

Also a big thanks to the volunteer presenters that come on air every week to present the sport shows with me. The netball girls, Nicki Farmer, Pam Davis and Trish Butters, Cricket show co-hosts Andrew Sloane and Brett Eldridge, and everyone else i work closely with week in week out, the Hampden League Live team, and Sport Sunday host Greg Kelson.

Also a big thanks to the judges, its great to finally win one! And a big congratulations to all the other nominees.



Are You an ACRAs Finalist?

If you’re a finalist in Metropolitan, Non-Metropolitan, Provincial or Country drop us a line and we’ll shine the spotlight on you. Email Blair  here.




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