Legends never die, they just graduate.
Peter Williams (‘20) came into WTUR a baby-faced freshman filled with a love for radio in its dying throes, and left the most accomplished employee WTUR has had. In his nearly four years at WTUR, Williams hosted five shows, with five semesters as the music director and three semesters as the station manager.
With his graduation this past year, WTUR has handed over the reins to sophomore Sawyer Pasma as the new station manager and senior Erica Morman as the programming manager.
“These are big shoes to fill, that’s for sure, but an exciting challenge nonetheless,” said Pasma.
Williams made his biggest impact on pushing WTUR into the future, no longer a single medium entity but a multi-faceted media production institution. From emphasizing Tutupalooza, WTUR’s flagship event that happens every spring, to creating brand new content like the Tiny Desk series, WTUR has grown under Williams.
“The station was always about retaining its voice of the campus, but also driving radio into the future and why we need to stay around for the next ten years,” said Williams. “The minute I walked into the first callout meeting for my radio show and thought I would love to have an impact on this club. It’s a special place and will always be dear in my heart.”
Growing WTUR is imperative for the future. Many colleges like Taylor around the country, including neighboring school Indiana Wesleyan University, have closed their radio program.
But WTUR has only grown. Williams has done this by surrounding himself with a dedicated team. In fact, the ability to anticipate the growth of radio was one main criteria in joining the WTUR staff under Williams.
Williams did more than anticipate the future, but made sense of the present.
“Peter took something that was discombobulated and turned into a well-oiled machine,” said Morman. “WTUR became a creative outlet for students with a consistent lasting vision. This was done through commitment and being known as the WTUR guy, even before I knew him.”
In fact, many of those on Taylor’s campus who couldn’t define WTUR knew that WTUR defined Williams.
One of the crowning and most overlooked accomplishments of Williams, however, came not from his responsibilities as a station manager, but in his role of the music director. Williams comprised a radio hour that featured what he deemed was the greatest hits from indie music of our generation. Featuring songs such as “Somebody That I Used to Know,” “Electric Feel” and “Pumped Up Kicks” ranging from 2006 to 2017: The Golden Age.
Williams is most proud of his ability to make an impact on the voice of Taylor. WTUR has a representative demographic across campus, with athletes, honors students, film students and nearly any type of student involved with WTUR.
Williams graduated at the end of the Fall semester of 2020 and is now working and living in Chicago.