(September 24, 2018) Nick Lewis is an example of the impact a mentor can have on a sports broadcasting career. An STAA member, Lewis is joining KREI/KTJJ radio in Farmington, MO as a news, sports and play-by-play broadcaster.
One mentor who has impacted Lewis’ career over the past year is Brian Hanni, the play-by-play voice at Lewis’ alma mater, the University of Kansas. Lewis graduated from KU in May.
“In my final year as a student, I was hired by Kansas Athletics to be the voice of Kansas volleyball and baseball,” says Lewis. “Brian helped me review my audio in our meetings and made sure to point out things both small and large that I could improve on as the seasons progressed.”
Hanni also helped Lewis with his Farmington application. “Brian knew the programming director in Farmington [Chad Speakar] and put in a good word for me, which I’m certain helped me quite a bit in landing the position.”
Lewis learned of the Farmington job in an STAA job leads email. He replaces fellow STAA member Kevin Kues who left for a sports talk host/producer position in Colorado. Lewis will be working in sports and news.
“Anybody who knows me well enough is aware that while most of my work experience from college came from sports, I graduated with a political science degree and therefore love to follow what’s going on outside of the sports world as well,” he says.
Lewis stood out in the application process by emphasizing that he wanted this job for reasons specific to the radio stations and the area. “During the job searching process I applied for multiple positions at places all around the country, but I think it was important to treat every opportunity differently. For me, it’s kind of the same thinking that goes into why I don’t just copy and paste the same cover letter and send it off to multiple employers.”
When Lewis joined STAA in January, STAA owner Jon Chelesnik was already aware of him. “Brian Hanni had told me about Nick last Fall. He told me he was working with Nick and that Nick had a promising future in front of him,” Chelesnik recalls.
“STAA really helps someone looking for a job save some time,” says Lewis. “Instead of having to do a bunch of Google searches to find where the potential positions are, STAA emails them to you. They also offer a ton of helpful advice, which is sent to each member. At the end of the day, we all have busy lives, and being an STAA member has certainly helped me manage mine.”