Staff & Leadership

Meet the people responsible for WERS' great taste in music


Our Staff

The mission of WERS 88.9 FM is to train future leaders of the media industry while creating a high-quality product for the Boston community and beyond that reflect our parent institution, Emerson College. WERS fulfills this mission every day as a professionally managed, student-run station. Please read more about the professional staff members who help carry out the mission of WERS.

Jack Casey, General Manager

Jack began his radio career as a DJ at WBRL in Berlin, New Hampshire between his first and second year at Emerson College. By the time he was a senior, Jack was hosting the morning show at WAAB-AM, the leading top 40 station in Worcester. After graduation, Jack worked on the air at radio stations around the U.S. and Canada, and in 1975 he moved into the ranks of management in the Washington, D.C. market. After programming stations in Roanoke, Richmond, and Cleveland, he returned to Boston to launch Magic 106.7 and served as programming manager there for 5 years. Around the same time, Jack returned to Emerson as adjunct professor of mass communications, and in 2004 he became the general manager of WERS.

Howard “D” Simpson, Operations Manager

Howard Simpson, an Emerson College Alum, ‘94, returned to campus to serve as WERS Operations Manager in 2007. As a student with a passion for urban music, Howard realized a versatile skill set would help him obtain longevity in the commercial radio industry. To that end, on-air performance, production, talk show producing, traffic, website management, and I.T. support came to be areas of specialty for him within multiple formats. Howard insists everyone call him “D”, a throwback to the radio pseudonym he adopted as an 889@Night host. “Broadcasting is an adventure everyday all day. Training future media industry leaders in this on demand age is the most challenging yet rewarding opportunity I’ve ever had.”

Kevin Cooney, Director of Development

Kevin came to WERS after spending more than a decade doing archaeological research in Turkey, Italy, England, and the United States. As the Director of Development, Cooney is responsible for WERS’s member recruitment and retention efforts. He works as part of a dynamic team organizing the station’s on–air pledge drives, events, and other fundraising activities. Cooney grew up in Hastings, Michigan, and obtained BAs in history and anthropology from Michigan State. He received a master’s degree in anthropology from Northern Illinois University. In 2004, he moved to Boston. Prior to Emerson, Cooney was the director of Membership and Publication Services at the ASOR.

Ashley Peterson, Associate Director of Development

Ashley comes to WERS with a background in nonprofit communication and marketing, and currently serves as the Associate Director of Development.

In that role, Peterson is responsible for donor stewardship, retention, and acquisition in addition to supporting annual fundraising efforts. Ashley is a life-long resident of Massachusetts and currently resides in Lowell. She graduated with high honors from Bentley University with a degree in marketing and is passionate about all things music, community, and education.

Mark Hobbs, Underwriting Director

Mark brings a well-rounded media and event marketing background to WERS. He started in radio sales at WCAP Lowell, Curt Gowdy Broadcasting’s WCCM/WCGY in Lawrence, Jam’n 94.5, and the Greater Media radio cluster, a 12 year billboard gig at Clear Channel Outdoor, Live Nation as Director of Sponsorship where he coordinated the naming rights sponsorship for the highest profile music amphitheater in Boston, the Blue Hills Bank Pavilion. Back to Clear Channel Outdoor overseeing operations and sales for at South Station, Simon Malls as Area Director of Business Development and full circle back to radio to WERS. As a Berklee grad, he brings a deep understanding of the power that music can bring to the marketing conversation. “The energetic modern rock format, passion and enthusiasm of our student staff and knowing I can be a resource for their professional growth makes this a great fit for me!”

Carol Royce, Membership Coordinator

Carol comes to WERS with a background in finance and operations and currently serves as the Membership Coordinator.

In that role, Carol manages the sustaining member program and works closely with the Associate Director of Development in supporting annual fundraising efforts. Carol earned her BA in Communication Arts from Gordon College. Prior to Emerson College, Carol worked in the finance and operations division at a VC firm north of Boston.

Chantel Watkins, Business Analyst

Originally from Maryland, Chantel joined WERS with a background in accounting and unclaimed property audit and currently serves as Business Analyst.

Chantel is responsible for initiating vendor payments, budget monitoring, and collections. She graduated with honors from Northeastern University with a dual bachelor’s degree in Accounting/MIS.

Ashley Lindsay, Traffic Coordinator & Administrative Assistant

Our Traffic Coordinator and Administrative Assistant, Ashley Lindsay joins WERS as no stranger. During her undergraduate years at Emerson College, she made WERS her second home, working on air and behind the scenes in the urban music department.

Known to audiences as Lady Ashley, she captivated listeners of the Secret Spot with soul filled R&B music. In her new role as Traffic Coordinator, she is eager to further develop her knowledge of advertising in radio. In her free time outside of the station, Ashley enjoys watching docu-series specials and wine tasting with friends.

George Knight, Morning Show Host

George Knight has been fortunate enough to spend his professional broadcasting career in his home city of Boston. After graduating from UMass Amherst with a communications degree, he started in Boston radio as a traffic reporter on WBZ Newsradio 1030. From there, he went to WSSH-FM and Kiss 108 (WXKS-FM), before being hired as Production Director for 92.9 WBOS-FM, where he remained for over 20 years. Along the way, he has co-hosted a morning show with NPR journalist Robin Young, and hosted and programmed the very popular and long running specialty show Sunday Morning Over Easy. He’s been a personality on Magic 106.7 and Country 102.5, and his voice can be heard across the country, thanks to his work as a freelance voice talent for radio, TV, and more. George is a man with a well rounded taste in music, and he has brought his knowledge and charm to the WERS airwaves every weekday morning since 2013. In addition to co-hosting the morning show with a revolving cast of very talented students, he serves as a mentor and coach for on air performance and radio production. He also happens to be an exceptionally funky bass player, and for many years has played in local bands alongside WERS Underwriting Director Mark Hobbs.

Phillip Jones, Afternoon Host

Phillip Jones, Emerson College '18, began at WERS as a freshman news writer and on-air host. During his time as a student, he led the Production Department while studying screenwriting and sound design.

After a stint in Los Angeles post-grad, and time on air at WCRB and WZMR in Boston, Phillip returned to WERS a week after his commencement to host the afternoon drive. When not on-air he programs Standing Room Only, the Playground, and All A Cappella. Now a Somerville resident, Phillip plays bass guitar, teaches Sunday School, and pays visits home to Wellsville, NY.