The Crusader Newspaper Group

Gary native opens second radio station in Chicago

radio station
Dinahlynn Biggs in radio station
Dinahlynn Biggs

With the goal of being a radio station that represents the “voice of the community,” Gary, Indiana native Dinahlynn Biggs, president/CEO of the BIGGS Radio station, recently launched the WCHI Chicago-Indianapolis radio station with a diverse platform offering news, talk and all new hip-hop…something for all generations.

Most of the daylight hours, from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., Biggs said her Chicago radio station features podcasts, features Roland Martin, Black America web, and has open forums for people to talk about what is happening in the Chicago communities. She also has all new hip-hop programming for the young artists. “I’m trying to cover all the bases,” she stated.

She has owned the BIGGS Indianapolis radio station since 2020 and launched another totally digital station in Chicago on June 27, 2022, that is available on all streaming platforms by Google Search. Biggs has a staff of 10 for her Chicago radio station, five in Indianapolis and eight volunteers from universities who get college credit working for her.

After graduating from Gary Roosevelt High School, Biggs attended Indiana University NW majoring in business and communications.

Asked how she began in broadcasting, Biggs said at the age of 17 she worked at VJ Records which was the first Black owned record label in the U.S., owned by Vivian Carter. She was hired as an intern working as a file clerk.

Biggs became completely immersed in the radio environment and worked after school filing records and doing other odd jobs on the weekends, but all that changed when one of the employees didn’t come to work one day.

On that same day, Carter gave orders to put Biggs on the radio station. Biggs reaction was “Me? Oh, my God.” The rest, she said, is history.

“I’ve worked as a radio personality for several stations in Gary, Indiana with my being at the AM 1370 station the longest…15 years before crossing over into radio in Chicago,” she explained.

Back in 2017, 2018, Biggs left the AM radio stations because “they didn’t want to jump into the digital pool of radio, the streaming. They just wanted to stay AM. I felt like the radio world was passing us by.

“So, I crossed over to join a station that was called WOSD radio in Chicago to work under veteran radio personality Al Greer. We worked out of the Regal Theater on 79th Street until I opened my own radio station,” she stated.

She has been on the radio since age 17 as a radio personality for several stations in Gary. WLTH, 1370 was the station she was with for 15 years before crossing over into radio in Chicago.

For her WCHI Chicago radio station, Biggs covers news, talk, people’s opinion and all new hip-hop “because I felt like the talk platform was kind of getting away from us.”

When asked her goal for 2022, Biggs said it is to be recognized as a voice for communities across America. “Both of my stations were built on a platform of community service.

“I partner with the Red Cross and the Salvation Army that I have for disaster relief for many years. That is my first love, my greatest passion. Through radio, we are able to help communities in need.

“I am able to give away wheelchairs to those in need, supply backpacks. Every year we give over 800 to 1,000 backpacks to kids. We educate kids on the opportunities in the music field, music, radio and TV which covers being a news anchor, a newscaster, a radio personality, a singer, a song writer or an engineer.”

Biggs said with schools across America taking music out of the curriculum, she wanted to make sure that her radio station had a good platform for students.

Asked how she recruits the youth, Biggs said, “My social media platform is massive. We have a major marketing team. I partner with universities across the country to hire interns. We are able to get people, breaking new news.

“What I love doing is to give workshops helping educate families to put together their music so they can get paid for it,” Biggs explained.

She provides free workshops paid for by one of her workshops to include underprivileged children. “We have musicians from across the country to come down and donate their time to show the young kids how to operate the microphones and instruments. We have classical writing music classes.

“I always travel with all of the artists, Marshall Thompson, the last living member of the Chi Lites from Chicago is my mentor. I was one of the hosts in Hollywood, California as they received the STAR on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

“It was such an honor, a mind-blowing thing,” she said. “I attended all of the VIP events and met and mingled with representatives from the record label that made the Chi Lites famous.”

In addition to Thompson, her team consists of such legends as Gene Chandler, the Duke of Earl, Gus Redmond and the late Herb Kent. She has been touching generations of youth worldwide since the 1970s.

“All those guys give their time to me several times a year in order to share their craft with kids around the world.”

While climbing the ladder in radio, Biggs has worked as a radio personality, a station engineer, a producer and program director. She is also a litigation paralegal working with the number one law firm, Lee Cossell & Crowley, in Indianapolis.

“I am good at settling claims and helping people. Everything I do I enjoy doing it. I travel 26 weekends to host concerts with the stars. It is very exciting.”

She also has her own show every day from 10 12 noon. “It’s my passion,” she said.

Biggs, who met with Reverend Jesse Jackson last Saturday, July 2, wants to partner with the PUSH Excel program, the educational arm begun by Jackson as part of the Rainbow PUSH Coalition.

“Last year I was appointed as national president of the National Black Radio Hall of Fame for the Indiana and Chicago chapters,” Biggs told the Chicago Crusader.

“I didn’t want to take it. I turned it down a few times, but once I realized the importance of having a chapter in Chicago for national radio to memorialize the voices of legends in Chicago, I accepted the invitation. The Chicago chapter had lain dormant for many years.

The headquarters of the National Black Radio Hall of Fame is located in Atlanta, Georgia. “They are building a museum from the ground up that will have the faces and biographies of people in radio. I am responsible for submitting the information from Chicago and Indiana.”

The National Black Radio Hall of Fame has nominated Biggs to receive the Presidential National Award for Community Service. She is slated to accept the award from President Biden in October for community service across the nation.

“I am so excited that they recognize my community service on their radar. I started out as a young DJ, carrying crates, and playing records in clubs. All I ever had was a case of water and a microphone. From that, now to be able to give away thousands of items to people by my partnerships with the Salvation Army is mind-blowing to me.”

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