She’s Got The Power
Carolyn “CJ” Bevill on her four decades at KCEP.
Few people in Nevada are unfamiliar with KCEP Power 88.1 FM, known to its loyal fans as “The Community Station.” Carolyn “CJ” Bevill has worked at the station for 37 years, and has had a front row seat to its evolution.
“When I started working at KCEP, Ray Willis was the departing general manager and Al Johnson was the incoming general manager and the station’ was broadcasting from a trailer in the parking lot of the Historic Westside School,” she recalled. “I started as a traffic director and receptionist when I first came to the station. I believe administratively there were only three employees: myself, a general manager and a program director. There were deejays who were the on-air personalities as well. I know some people might remember Gino B and Ray C during that time. People often ask about Gino B. He still keeps in touch, and is now retired now and living in Arizona.”
The primary objective of KCEP when it started broadcasting was to train and educate those interested in pursuing a career in communications. KCEP has kep generations of fans keep up with the latest in gospel, R&B and soul music.
According to Bevill, “There have been many notables and celebrities who visited the radio station throughout the years. The R&B group that really stands out in my mind are the O’Jays. They visited the station in the past, but still come by to this day to say hello and to spend time with us. Also, I remember picking up the phone and Jesse Jackson was on the other end of the line.”
Bevill says that there have been many memorable moments at KCEP radio. “There have been good times and not-so-good times, but the best moments for me was when we coordinated radio station fundraisers at the Historic Moulin Rouge Hotel when Sarah Ann Knight Preddy operated it. She was a wonderful person and our weekly fundraisers there would bring the entire community out in support of the radio station. I remember DC Rider and Bobby D, who would serve as our fundraising deejays. It was really wonderful. I also have photos from the ‘Keeping the Music Alive’ fundraising concert that Kimberly Bailey-Tureaud produced for KCEP in 1992 at the Thomas & Mack Center.”
Recently, KCEP redeveloped its station that has moved into another area in the Historic Westside School with the latest broadcasting technology and equipment.
Bevill, who was inducted into the Nevada Broadcasters Hall of Fame in 2000, explained her longevity this way: “Some people ask,” she said, ‘Why are you still here at KCEP? And I say, ‘Because I love my job, and we are a family. Always have been.”