Live from Chicago on RadioNeo

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Radio NEO brings Greek music and news to Chicago, via local host Alex Facklis. For the past few months, he’s been broadcasting “Live from Chicago,” Monday thru Friday from 9:00 – 10:00 am.

By Maria A. Karamitsos

Facklis, a native Chicagoan, was born to immigrant parents. He grew up attending Holy Trinity Church and Socrates Greek School in the evening. He went on to study Industrial Engineering and Management Sciences at Northwestern University. For years, he worked for Andersen Consulting and then Accenture in various external and internally-facing organizations doing information technology consulting and information systems development, until 2009.

His love for the Greek language and all things Greek started a very young age, “thanks to my parents, my family, and playing soccer with other Greeks, which I still do,” he shared. An active member of Chicago’s Greek community, he previously served on the board of directors for the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago Young Adult League, and is currently an officer of the Hellenic Professional Society of Illinois (HPSI).

Also, Alex recently completed the Certification for Attainment in Greek, offered by the Greek Ministry of Education and Religion.

“Though I’ve spent my entire professional career in information systems technology and consulting, this opportunity is enabling me to return to an aspect of my past long since left behind,” Facklis explained. During his years at Northwestern, he was involved at the university’s WNUR 89.3 FM, serving in a variety of on-air and off-air roles. “It was a great college experience, but since I decided not to pursue a career in radio/entertainment after graduation, it I thought it would only be a fond memory.”

Since leaving Accenture in 2009, he’s been developing his own information services business. “A large part of my initial focus will likely involve solutions for Greek-American businesses and consumers,” he revealed. The company will be launched later this year.

He heard about the radio venture from a friend in the Los Angeles-area, who connected him with two gentlemen from NEO magazine. “Though I had come across the magazine in the recent past, I didn’t know much about it since it’s published in New York and isn’t widely available in Chicago.” The two men were starting a Greek-American radio station based in Astoria, New York. The station – Radio NEO – is available over the air via SCA-capable radios in the New York area, and via the Internet everywhere else. This station differentiates itself with a focus on younger Greek-Americans more accustomed to communicating in English rather than in Greek.

The founders sought a host for a daily Chicago-based program on the station. Facklis accepted the assignment, hoping to gain exposure for his new information technology services business, and to share his passion for Hellenism.

Radio NEO is the only Greek-American radio station broadcasting 24 hours a day, seven days a week, with programming oriented toward Greek-Americans, instead of native Greek speakers. Most shows are produced in the central studios in Astoria (Queens), but in addition to “Live from Chicago,” there is a daily show from Los Angeles and weekly show from Austin, Texas. There is also a fair amount of content - mostly overnight and off-hours -simulcast from Flash 96 and Proto, Athens and Nicosia based respectively, radio stations.

“Live from Chicago” will be focused on the interests of Chicago area Greek-Americans. Currently this consists of a mix of relevant news stories from Greece – in English – local events and happenings, and a wide variety of Greek music.

“My objective in hosting the show is two-fold, to be both entertaining and informative. These components are essential to create a following, and to ultimately develop a long-term relationship with listeners,” he added.

“The show will also include interviews with local Greeks of interest. I’m open to ideas, so if people have ideas for the show or the station, or are interested in sponsorship, advertising, or promotional opportunities, which are essential at this early stage, they may contact me at

For requests or show information, call 773-599-9NEO or 773-599-9636. Follow Radio NEO on Facebook. An internet connection is necessary to tune in to the daily broadcast. Visit and clicking on “Listen”

Reprinted with permission of The Greek Star. 2011.


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