A radio veteran; the married, father of two daughters had continued to host his national afternoon drive show despite serious health setbacks over the last year. Banks had just hosted his syndicated radio on Friday and then traveled to Chicago this past weekend for the Black Women’s Expo before returning back to Miami.
Born in Philadelphia and raised in Detroit, Banks made a name for himself in radio in Los Angeles, before going on to have success in markets like Las Vegas, Oakland and Chicago. It was in the Windy City that Banks became a star, while hosting a morning show on WGCI 107.5FM.
In the mid-90’s, Banks entered the world of syndication through ABC Radio Networks, first with an afternoon show and then the “Doug Banks Morning Show” with co-hosts DeDe McGuire and comedian CoCo Budda.
In 2008, his morning show was canceled and Banks returned to afternoons. His new show, “The Ride with Doug and DeDe” featured comedian Rudy Rush. In 2010, Banks moved over to American Urban Radio Networks (AURN) and the show became “The Doug Banks Show.” Rush left the show and was replaced by comedian George Willborn, who joined Banks after his previous show “The Michael Baisden Show” was canceled.
In 2014, McGuire then departed the syndicated series after more than a decade of working alongside Banks.
Most recently, “The Doug Banks Show” was co-hosted by Dee Dee Renee and continued to air in about 15 radio markets, including Chicago, the place where it all began.
On a personal note, my very first radio opportunity was on “The Doug Banks Morning Show” in the early 2000’s after Banks and McGuire were introduced to me by radio and marketing executive Sheila Eldridge.
For one year, I provided entertainment updates on-air once a week or whenever there was breaking news. Several times, Banks and his morning show team flew me in for high-profile promotional events in New York City, Philadelphia and in Jamaica.
Banks was a kind man. Very gracious and supportive on air. Back in 2013 after the “The Michael Baisden Show” ended, Banks was a contender for the afternoon drive slot on WHUR 96.3 FM in Washington, DC and expressed interest in having me return to his show because he knew having someone connected to DC would be important. The time slot ended up going to Frank Ski.
Our prayers go out to Banks’ family, friends, colleagues and the millions of listeners who have listened to him throughout the years.