In all of Chicago radio, you won’t find a more talented, knowledgeable, brilliant, or universally admired personality than Bob Stroud. But soon you won’t find him hosting lunches anymore.
Stroud, 71, announced Tuesday that he is retiring from the top-rated midday show he has hosted for 21 years on WDRV 97.1-FM. His last day of full-time work at classic rock station Hubbard Radio will be June 30.
As he enters semi-retirement, Stroud will continue to host his two daily features — “Ten at 10” and “One 45 at 1:45” — and his flagship weekly program, “Rock ‘n Roll Roots,” now in its 43rd year.
Few can match Stroud’s longevity here, starting as a production manager at the old WMET in the late ’70s, followed by broadcasts at WLUP, WCKG and WXRT, among others. Since 2001, the Kalamazoo, Michigan native has been a fixture on The Drive.
For a kid who grew up listening to Chicago Top 40 giants WLS and WCFL, this was the ride of his life.
“I never saw this coming, a 43-year career in my dream city of Chicago,” Stroud said. “Now it’s time to relax a bit and spend more time with my family, while keeping an arm wrestle in the game by continuing to host two weekday features and my 42-year-old baby, ‘Rock ‘n RollRoots.” ”
In the latest Nielsen Audio survey, Stroud’s midday show on The Drive was No. 1 overall with a 7.6% market share and a cumulative weekly audience of 487,300. For more than two decades, it has been at or near the top of the highly competitive midday odds.
“I’m just thrilled with Bob’s opportunity,” Keith Hastings, director of brand and content for The Drive, said in a statement.
“Being able to enjoy life and free time with family, while continuing to nurture his relationship with Drive Nation is a rare opportunity. He can continue to do what he loves, while doing it on his own schedule. is a special talent and a special person. I’m really happy that we can continue to work together in this great city.
Hastings said a search is underway for a new midday host. In the meantime, afternoon co-host Janda Lane will fill in from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., starting July 1.