MacDonald has a long association with broadcasting having spent time on-air with New Zealand’s major news and talk radio brands Newstalk ZB and Radio New Zealand as well as RadioLIVE and working for the BBC in London.
Despite leaving the media to pursue a successful career in communications, MacDonald’s kept an active interest in broadcasting and journalism returning to guest host on the Newstalk ZB Canterbury Mornings show in April this year. He’s also been filling in on the popular show since 14 June.
John will be joined by producer Jess Davidson. Another local, Davidson has broad media experience in live radio and television production, presenting, journalism, and podcasting.
NZME Head of Talk, Jason Winstanley, says, “Both John and Jess are accomplished broadcasters. Being Christchurch locals they’re very well-tuned to the issues that really get under the skin of Cantabs.
“John led the recent debate over the Christchurch City Council’s decision to reduce the capacity of the new stadium. It gave our Christchurch community the opportunity to voice their concerns from a position of understanding on a platform that we know has the attention of local leaders.”
For MacDonald, the new role fulfils a long-held ambition to make a full-time return to talk radio – a medium that he’s never lost a passion for, and he says, “I just love it. The immediacy, the conversation, the personal nature of it. Being local means Canterbury Mornings can get right into the thick of things that get our communities talking.
“It’s perfect having the Newstalk ZB and New Zealand Herald news teams just outside the studio window too. When it comes to covering local breaking news – you simply will not beat local radio.”
With two decades experience in communications based in Christchurch, MacDonald has a deep understanding of and connections to the Christchurch and Canterbury commercial sector.