Art Aronson: From the shores of Chemainus to the radio waves of Victoria

Radio’s Work of Art a coup for The Q when he’s in the Zone

Art Aronson at the microphone at The Q. He says his time in Victoria has been fantastic. (Photo by webmeisterBud.com)

Art Aronson at the microphone at The Q. He says his time in Victoria has been fantastic. (Photo by webmeisterBud.com)

Teamwork is the recurring trait in the significant developments of Art Aronson’s life.

During his high school years, teamwork was the primary focus for Aronson, 34, that brought success and provided motivation on sports teams growing up at Chemainus Secondary School.

Teamwork also plays an important role in Aronson’s current position as news director at Vancouver Island’s iconic 100.3 The Q and The Zone 91.3 radio stations in Victoria.

“In media, you’re part of a team, you’ve got to be a good teammate,” he reasoned.

Aronson went from an orphanage in Thailand at the age of four along with his three-year-old brother Emmett to his adopted family on Thetis Island. He attended the one-room schoolhouse there during his elementary school years up to Grade 6, before continuing in Chemainus.

After graduating, Aronson attended Vancouver Island University in Nanaimo and took general courses while driving a delivery truck for Neptune Foods. He decided one day he didn’t want to wake up at 2:30 in the morning and pack heavy foods the rest of his life so he enrolled in the broadcast journalism program at BCIT in 2009 at the age of 23.

He learned from some of the best in the business there and graduated in 2011. The 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver provided a perfect training ground to acquire experience.

Aronson did an internship in Toronto in 2011 with SiriusXM satellite radio for the National Hockey League’s Home Ice package, and thoroughly enjoyed doing the updates. His time there culminated in the infamous playoffs when the Vancouver Canucks lost in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup playoffs to the Boston Bruins, setting off a riot in Vancouver.

“By the time we got home and turned on the TV, the city was on fire,” he recalled. “That was a crazy time.”

After that, he went in search of a broadcasting job. He wound up doing some odd jobs, including play-by-play for the B.C. Hockey League’s Surrey Eagles.

Eventually, though, he found work as a news reporter in Peace River, Alberta. Within two months, he was offered a job back closer to home with the Vista radio station in Campbell River and relocated to the Island.

“That’s where I really sunk my teeth into municipal politics and small-town events,” Aronson recalled.

Two years later, he went to the Courtenay-Comox station within the same company as a news reporter and covering a variety of sporting and other events.

Aronson actually quit radio at one point in 2013 and took a job with an on-line website that gave sports gambling advice.

But eventually, the lure of radio proved too much. A job at The Q and The Zone opened up and Aronson was hired for the roving reporter position. After about a year, news director Kirk Mason retired.

“I was supposed to be the reporter and he was supposed to be the anchor and news director,” Aronson explained. “Here I am, the reporter and the anchor. I do news for both stations. It’s more anchoring than it is reporting.”

He’s eclipsed three years since taking on the roles while working on completing his Master of Arts and Communication.

“My time in Victoria has been fantastic,” he enthused.

The Q is like the NHL of broadcasting, with a solidly-entrenched team of on-air personalities, a loyal listening audience and strong advertising base.

“It’s been enriching for my career,” Aronson conceded.

And there’s a certain notoriety that comes from working at The Q. It’s like Cliff (Clavin, not LeQuesne) walking into the bar at Cheers. Everybody knows your name.

“I never got into the business to have that status,” said Aronson. “I don’t see myself as famous, but people do recognize my name and my voice now.”

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