Anthony Donatelli was born on May 10 in Newport Beach. Donatelli has lived in the Inland Empire for most of his life. He is a husband, son, brother and a fur dad. His first radio job was in college on Coyote Radio, it was on the campus of Cal State University, San Bernardino. Now Donatelli is the guy you drive home with every afternoon on K-FROG. When he is not on the radio, he is either fixing up his 100 year old house that he shares with his wife, managing his fantasy baseball/football teams, getting emotionally invested in some good reality TV or at a concert.
1. Hi Anthony, can you tell me a little bit about yourself before you became a country music radio DJ? I was born in Newport Beach and grew up in Corona for almost my entire life. My parents were fantastic role models growing up and still are. My Dad is a salesman and my Mom is a flight attendant. I also have a younger brother who was my best friend growing up. I watched and played a lot of sports as a kid, my favorites were baseball, football and hockey. A lot of kids that I grew up wanted to be professional athletes, but I always wanted to be the guy announcing the game!
2. What led you to a career in radio? I attended Santiago High School, where I took an interest in writing and began reporting for the school’s newspaper. After graduating, I attended Norco College where I became the Editor-In-Chief of their newspaper and began pursuing a career in journalism. After that, I then transferred to California State University, San Bernardino. On my first day, I noticed the school had their own radio station and my whole mentality instantly changed. I walked into the station and expressed in getting involved. I became a volunteer and got to read a 2 minute sports recap on another students show. After three shifts of doing that, I was given my own show! I I had a two hour sports show where I talked about the schools and professional sports. During my Junior year, I began looking for jobs in radio. I didn’t have enough experience to get a shot at doing play-by-play for local sports teams in the area and other sports stations weren’t hiring. So my program director at school referred me to the Inland Empire music station that she worked for, but my interest just wasn’t there. So I asked “What about K-FROG?” She said my odds were slim but if that’s what I wanted to do then to go for it. So I reach out to Scott Ward, who was currently the music director at the time and morning show host. I sent him a message on Twitter and he was nice enough to reply and actually give me the time of day. He even invited me in for a tour of the station! So I got to visit the station, meet all of the staff and I must have made a great impression because at the end of it, I was offered a job! Part time board operator from midnight to 5am and the rest is history.
3. What is your favorite of your job? My favorite part of my job is making people happy. Of course it’s an amazing perk to go to so many different concerts and meet so many amazing artists, but if I can make someone smile while they sit in traffic or hear the excitement in their voice when they win tickets, that gives me so much fulfillment. I hope that I can be that person that makes someones day a little better and gives them something to laugh at or talk about with their family or friends later that day.
4. Who would be a “dream guest” to have on your show? No question, Taylor Swift. She’s the biggest name in music right now, in my opinion, and I would love to pick her brain on so many things. She’s also very nice to look at.
5. What was your favorite radio station to listen to when you were growing up? The one station I always found myself listening to KIIS-FM. The music, the jocks, everything about it always entertaining to me as a kid.
6. Do you have favorite hobby outside of radio? When I’m not on the radio, I spend a lot of my time wit my wife fixing up our old home. Our house is over 100 years old and was a major fixer upper. In the 2 years that we’ve owned it, we’ve made some real progress! I also love hanging out with my dog and taking him places, he’s seriously the best. I’m also a TV junkie, so I usually kick back by watching sports, The Bachelor or reruns of The Office and Home Improvement.
7. What kind of advice would you give to someone who would want to be a radio DJ? The advice that I would give anybody that wants to be a DJ or anything else in the world is to just be nice. Being mean or rude will get you nowhere and never think that this world owes you anything. Work as hard as you can on every task and treat everybody with the same amount of respect.
8. What was your dream job as a child? My dream job was to be a sports announcer. As a kids I would always turn on SportsCenter or a baseball game and put it on mute. I would take the tv remote and call the game as if i was the sports anchor or play-by-play guy.
9. What is one of your favorite quotes? One of my all-time favorite quotes was from Conan O’Brien’s farewell speech from his final episode on “The Tonight Show.” During his speech he said: “If you work really hard and you’re kind, amazing things will happen.” I’ve come to realize that is 100% true because it’s happened to me.