The newly-formed KAB Rising Star Award seeks to recognize young broadcasters (under the age of 40) who have made a significant impact on their stations and communities. Winners are selected based on their contributions to the industry, spirit of innovation, and community involvement. The KAB will present the Rising Star Awards at the Station Awards Dinner on Oct. 24 in Manhattan! Be sure to join us as we honor these two incredible broadcasters!
Rising Star TV Award
Lily Wu, KWCH, Wichita
Lily Wu has been a television journalist for nearly 12 years and began telling stories in her hometown of Wichita as a teenager with the Wichita East High School newspaper and KTQW TV, where she won a KAB 1st place award in Public Affairs in 2003.
In June 2020, she joined the Eyewitness News team as a co-anchor for the 4 p.m. newscast and multimedia journalist for KWCH. Lily also produces a weekly business and employment story for the “Building You” franchise and informs viewers of daily “Job of the Day” opportunities on KWCH at 4 p.m.
Lily earned a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Hong Kong, while serving as a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar. She also earned the distinction of Summa Cum Laude, graduating with two bachelor’s degrees in international business and integrated marketing communication from Wichita State University. She is dedicated to serving her community as an active volunteer for various organizations. She is a board member of the Steve Clark YMCA and the WSU Barton School of Business Advisory Council, director of the Miss Wichita Asian Festival Scholarship Pageant, and past president of the Wichita Asian Association. She has previously served on the boards of the WSU Alumni Association, Orpheum Theatre of Wichita, Botanica Chinese Garden of Friendship, Susan G Komen Wichita chapter, WSU SIFE, Visioneering Wichita, and Diversity Kansas.
Lily was involved in pageantry and placed 4th Runner-Up at the Miss Global 2017 pageant held in Cambodia. She won the titles of Miss Kansas United States 2012 and Miss Kansas Teen International 2003, and represented the USA at Miss World University and Miss Chinese World. She was named the “2020 Exceptional Young Leader” by the Wichita Regional Chamber of Commerce and a “2015 Leader in Diversity” by the Wichita Business Journal.
Rising Star Radio Award
Matt Althouse, Eagle Communications, Great Bend
Matt started his radio career at KJCK-FM in Junction City in 2003 as on air talent and later, music director. He spent one year with Rocking M Radio in Great Bend in 2008 at KZRS working the mid-day shift.
In 2009 Matt joined Hull Broadcasting in Great Bend where he had the opportunity to be exposed to every facet of the business. From traffic logs and programming, to engineering, and later Operations Manager and Digital Sales Manager for Eagle Communications.
He was also Program Director for KBGL-FM from 2012 until 2021 when he accepted the position of General Manager for Eagle Communications in Great Bend. In his first year of station management, Matt and his sales team have hit all but one of their monthly quotas. He’s successfully navigated the replacement of an operations manager and news director and orchestrated the successful and profitable giveaway of a brand-new car for Great Bend radio’s summer promotion.
Matt sees himself as a problem solver. He enjoys helping clients and staff members solve their problems, and says, “There is no shortage of problems out there.” He looks back with pride on some successful cases, such as the plumber who showed up at the office as a one-man operation with a single truck who now runs a large fleet with storefronts in multiple communities–proof of the power of radio and a strategic advertising campaign.
Matt is also passionate about enriching the next generation of media professionals. He works hard to enable young people with opportunities to grow and succeed in the broadcast industry.
Away from the office, Matt has successfully navigated some challenges as well. As a single dad with two young children (Lucas and Emma) work/life balance is a top priority and a challenge that he has conquered.