The Biff radio celebrating 40 years with dedication ceremony

By: Mike Koury | Birmingham - Bloomfield Eagle | Published March 28, 2016

 The Biff celebrates its 40th year on the air this year with a dedication ceremony of its new studios in Bloomfield Hills High School.

The Biff celebrates its 40th year on the air this year with a dedication ceremony of its new studios in Bloomfield Hills High School.

Photo provided by Pete Bowers

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BLOOMFIELD HILLS — The Biff, the longtime radio station run out of Bloomfield Hills High School, is celebrating 40 years on the air this year and wants to do so with the Bloomfield community.

The station, which operates on WBFH 88.1 FM, will hold a dedication ceremony, open to the public, for its studio that was built at the new high school, 4200 Andover Road, at 2 p.m. on Saturday, April 16.

WBFH general manager and electronic media teacher Pete Bowers said he thought it would be a great idea to bring back some alumni and people who got their careers in media started at the station, and for them to take a stroll down memory lane and see the newly built studio.

Bowers has been with the station since the beginning when it opened in 1976, and has seen it undergo many changes over the years, from playing records and cassettes to using hard drives and computers to play music.

“I’ve been here since day one,” he said. “I’ve seen the evolution.”

From those early days, the studio has grown into a nationally recognized radio station, recently earning 21 awards from the 76th annual International Radio and Webcasting Conference, including four first-place awards, and was a finalist for Best High School Radio Station.

“It’s a pretty rewarding career in that I get students coming in here, and some of them aren’t sure about being on the radio ... and some of them get what I call the broadcasting bug,” he said. “They start to enjoy being on the air.”

One member of its current radio team, senior Foster Stubbs, was part of three of four first place awards, including Best Sports Play-By-Play and Best Sports Talk Program, both with Dylan Wittenberg, and Best Use of Social Media.

Stubbs said he’d always wanted a sports writer or broadcaster, and seeing he had an opportunity at his own high school, he thought he’d take it, saying it was one of the best decisions of his high school career.

And to see people like JoAnne Purtan and Heather Catallo, both alumnae of The Biff who work for WXYZ Channel 7, go on to be successful in their careers was very influential to Stubbs.

“It’s certainly inspiring,” he said. “There’s been alumni all over the world of media, all across America. It’s really cool to turn on the TV and see a news anchor and they could be a Biff alum.

“That’s very cool to see, knowing that they started right where you are right now. They were in your shoes at one point.”

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