Open Mic Grand Jury Spotlight: Phil Guyan

New York Festivals Grand Jury are some of the best and brightest in the radio industry and the brilliant creative minds who judge the 2019 NYF Radio Awards. These award-winning directors, producers, journalists, writers, actors, creative directors, composers, on-air talent, and programming executives are all actively involved in creating today’s innovative radio content.

Open Mic Spotlight spends a few minutes each week with NYF’s respected Grand Jury members and each NYF Spotlight interview shares the insights of these esteemed content creators from the wonderful world of radio.

Phil Guyan, CEO of Christian Broadcasting Association

This week we shine the spotlight on New York Festivals Radio Awards Grand Jury member, Phil Guyan, CEO of CBA – Christian Broadcasting Association. Phil has led CBA since 1995 performing various roles, such as programming, new initiatives, fundraising and marketing. His main role is to bring together great Christian communicators to create compelling programmes suitable for mainstream radio audiences, which communicate the Christian faith in creative ways.

Under Phil’s leadership, CBA has earned numerous New York Festivals Radio Awards including a Gold trophy for “Newstalk ZB” in 2017 for Best Writing and a Silver for Best Religious Programme. In 2018 “The Crazy Kiwi Christmas Kids Show” earned a Bronze trophy for for Best Children’s Programme.

New York Festivals: What qualities are most important in award-winning work?

Phil Guyan: Creativity, innovation, entertainment value… make me laugh, make me cry, make me smile with appreciation of your cleverness… take me somewhere I’ve never been before.

New York Festivals: How does your experience within the industry help you throughout the judging process?

Phil Guyan: I’ve been making radio programmes for 24 years – all sorts of different formats, from 15-seconds prerecorded, to 24-hour live specials… serious, silly, important, and just for fun. We’ve had some successes along the way, and have never had big budgets – so it’s always been about having a good idea and executing it on a shoe-string budget. That means I admire a good idea when I hear it.

New York Festivals: How do you think content creators will change the way they tell stories in the future?

Phil Guyan: The ability of listeners to engage is greater than ever, so engagement is key, interaction is an attractive option, and authenticity is critical. Listeners also have a million choices, so the only way to build an audience, will be for people to really feel connected. That means intimacy and being known by the audience will be increasingly important.

New York Festivals: What project meant the most to you in your own history?

Phil Guyan: Newstalk BC – (refer A great idea, with loads of talented people on board, creatively edgy, clever story-telling, satirical, political, important, funny, moving, and a million laughs in the making. It won a stack of awards, in several countries. It will be hard to top that one!

New York Festivals: What advice do you have for young people just beginning a career in the industry?

Phil Guyan: ‘Cut through’ requires big ideas… average radio gets average responses. But you don’t need to be shocking to get noticed. Good work will eventually speak for itself. The first twenty years are the hardest – after that, the hard work begins to pay off.

For more information on New York Festivals Radio Awards, please visit: or to enter visit: HERE.

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