One of Vermont's most respectedjournalists is about to take on a new medium. Dave Gram, an editor for VTDigger.org who spent 31 years covering the Green Mountain State for the Associated Press, has been hired by WDEV Radio as the host of its daily two-hour talk show.
Gram's first day behind the microphone will be February 26. He replaces Mike Smith, who is leaving on February 19 after two and a half years as host of "Open Mike." The program will get a new name, which has yet to be determined, according to station owner Steve Cormier.
The search for a new host, he said, involved calling people and soliciting suggestions. That's when Gram's name surfaced. "He came in, we talked to him and we offered him the job," said Cormier. "Sometimes it's that simple."
Gram's a serious newsman, but he's known in Statehouse circles for a sharp sense of humor that seems likely to translate well to radio. In both respects he's not unlike Mark Johnson, who hosted the show at WDEV for 16 years before, ironically, becoming an editor at VTDigger in 2015.
"We wanted to find a news guy this time," Cormier said. "Mike did a nice job, but someone like Dave, who knows the issues and the people, will be more of a moderator." Cormier emphasized WDEV's tradition of openness to all points of view, a hallmark of its 80-plus years of Squier family ownership.