"WVON leads with service and excellence. Our history has proven who we are, our audiences are proof of who we are, and our team members reflect who we are." ~Melody Spann Cooper, Our CEO

A few words

About Us


For over five decades, WVON has been the voice of the city and urban community. The station has performed as a platform of Real influence, including the political campaign sector of change in President Barack Obama’s election.

The Original owners of Chess Records, Leonard and Phil Chess, first carved out the canvas of WVON in 1963, a station designed to be “The Voice of the Negro.”

Later they assembled the dynamic group of Radio personalities, The Good Guys. This group had the title of the Top 3 Radio Stations in Chicago.

Political activism and cultural awareness became the nationwide recognition attached to WVON. To magnify the station’s capabilities, in 1977, WVON was bought by Midway Broadcasting owners Wesley South and Pervis Spann. Today the station is continuing to flourish with Melody Spann-Cooper’s radio expertise in Chicago.

Meet Our CEO

Melody Spann Cooper is the driving force behind Midway Broadcasting Corporation.  As the daughter of the company’s co-founder Pervis Spann, she joined an elite list of female-owned media companies in 1999 when she became Chairwoman of the company, which now includes broadcast and digital platforms.  In addition to the company’s flagship station WVON,  Spann Cooper expanded the company’s assets in 2007, with  the development of WRLL Radio, The Voice of Chicago’s Latino Community.  In October 2020, she oversaw the launch of Midway Broadcasting’s new OTT Digital Streaming Platform, VONtv, (pronounced Vaughn) which can be seen in more than 100 million+ households on ROKU,   Apple TV+, Amazon Prime and at von.tv.

Spann Cooper serves on many professional and civic boards including as Co-Chair of the Diversity and Inclusion Council for the Obama Foundation;  as Commissioner of the Illinois Liquor Control Commission;  as Chair of the Illinois Broadcasting Association;  as a board member of the FCC Communications Equity and Diversity Council (CEDC),  and as a board member of the National Association of Black Owned Broadcasters,

In 2019, she released her first book, The Girlfriend’s Guide to Closing the Deal, a semi-biographical publication for women about people, power and purpose.


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December 9, 2021


Black Bench Chicago graduates first group of young Black leaders in public affairs. Creators hope it’s the start of an emerging, ongoing talent pipeline.

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November 15, 2021


Springfield is sunny with a chance of maelstrom


October 19, 2021


Black & Powerful: Melody Spann Cooper, Midway Broadcasting Corporation Chairman & CEO

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May 22, 2021


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May 22, 2021


Black Media Respond to Mayor Lightfoot Letter

Chicago Defender

May 20, 2021


Our Chicago: Voices of the Community with ABC 7 Chicago’s Cheryl Burton, Explores Significance of the Election of Kamala Harris

Chicago Defender

November 18, 2020


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October 1, 2020


Illinois Black-owned media coalition seeks bigger slice of $2 billion state advertising pie

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September 23, 2020


The Executive Leadership Council Seeks To Amplify The Success Of Black Professionals With 2020 Mid-Level Managers’ Symposium October 14-15

PR Newswire

September 17, 2020


Duckworth Joins Women’s Business Development Center to Discuss Intersection of Gender and Race in Government and Business

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August 6, 2020


Feder: WVON to add ‘enhanced news’ with Black Information Network

Daily Herald

July 16, 2020


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June 15, 2020


Kim Foxx shares the importance of voting at 4th annual L.E.G.A.C.Y. Awards Gala

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UChicago symposium focuses on business diversity in professional services

UChicago News

December 9, 2019


Chaka Khan lights up Chicago Urban League dinner

Chicago Tribune

November 8, 2019


Chicago Urban League flying high thanks to annual gala

Chicago Defender

November 8, 2019


CEO and owner of Chicago’s WVON radio station Melody Spann Cooper pens new book

Rolling Out

November 2, 2019

Come work with us

If you love media or are interested in using your skills to make a difference in Chicago, we might have the perfect opportunity for you to join our team. Come work in an energetic environment where you can develop professionally, make an impact, and have fun at the same time! Learn about our current opportunities below.

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