WNHU Welcomes Longtime Radio Personality as General Manager
WNHU Welcomes Longtime Radio Personality as General Manager

By Thalia Hernandez ’17 M.A.
Communications and Public Affairs Graduate Assistant


Dave Cranshaw
UNH Today Editor

When he was a student at Hobart College, Bruce Barber stopped by the school’s radio station to visit a fraternity brother who was hosting a show.

“He gave me a card to read on air,” Barber remembered. “I went in the booth and was reading it when I looked through the glass and my fraternity brothers were trying to make me laugh. I think I might have cracked up at one point, and I thought I had made a fool of myself. When I came out, someone said, ‘Bruce, you sound pretty good.’ That was it. I was bitten by the bug.”

Bruce Barber

He went on to host a music show, serve as the station’s public affairs director and do play-by-play work for various sports teams, experiences that launched him into a 35-year career in radio.

“That was my introduction to radio, and I am so excited to give the students at UNH the same opportunity,” said Barber, who was recently named the new general manager of WNHU 88.7. “It was college radio that started me. In a lot of ways, that made my life.”

Barber is perhaps best known as a co-host of the “Smith and Barber Morning Show,” which ran on WPLR in New Haven for nearly 18 years. He will now lead a station that is regularly named the best college radio station in the region in the annual Best of New Haven Readers’ Poll.

“The station’s biggest strength is the commitment of its volunteers,” he said. “I am amazed by the students’ talent, their passion and their desire to try new things and to learn.”

He first became familiar with WNHU about six years ago when he was invited to campus by the station’s general manager. “I loved the station and all the different programming and really fell in love with the place,” he said. “What I enjoy most about college radio is the creative freedom. It energizes me the most.”

“College radio really existed in the past as a way for students to experiment and learn,” he continued. “I want to take that, which we’re doing, and expand on it. If just one student gets to have the same opportunities that I had, it’s a win for me. I think it is going to be a lot more than one before we are all said and done.”

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