Meet Our Staff
Brad Walhof, Station Manager
Brad Walhof’s career in the communications industry spans over three decades. Most of the thirty four years have been spent in radio. Walhof also worked briefly in newspaper and television. In radio Walhof worked his way up in the ranks from disc jockey to morning show host and then sales manager and finally general manager.
Walhof has been a station manager for over fifteen years for various radio stations in northern Minnesota.
Walhof has broadcast over 1000 sporting events on the radio including basketball,, volleyball , hockey and football. Highlights include high school events from the Fargodome, Metrodome, Williams Arena, Mariucci Arena and the Target Center. The most memorable sports broadcast was the Class” A” Minnesota High School Basketball Championship game in 2007 when Cass Lake Bena was defeated by Ellsworth 74-73 on a three pointer at the buzzer at Target Center.
Walhof also received a MBA Crystal Award for best small market live news coverage from the Minnesota Broadcasters Association for reporting live on the Minnesota Log Homes/ Chippewa Tribe fire.
In 2007 Walhof chaired the media portion of the Minnesota Governors Fishing Opener on Leech Lake. Over 30 media outlets broadcast live from the event.
Walhof’s resume includes interviews with U.S. Senators, Congressmen, Governors, and state and local political leaders.
Walhof served on the Walker City Council for eight years and was mayor of Walker for sixteen years. Under his leadership Walker built a new three million dollar state of the art water facility, rebuilt the wastewater treatment facility to expand capacity and most recently worked with Congressman Jim Oberstar to complete a one million dollar expansion of the Walker Airport runway to accommodate twin engine aircraft.
Walhof is proud of the fact that the KOJB broadcast studios, tower, and transmitter facility were built entirely with grant money. The radio project included a 500 foot tower in Bena and two additional 400 foot towers were built for Leech Lake MIS in Ball Club and Cutfoot . The towers now owned by the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe with Bena managed by KOJB Radio and the Cutfoot and Ball Club towers managed by Leech Lake MIS. The radio project including the three towers totals 1.9 million…all without using band funds.
Walhof and his family live in Walker. His wife Cindy is a tribal lifeline specialist for Arvig Communications Systems on the Leech Lake Reservation. Cindy provides telephone, internet and cable to area residents.
Walhof’s interests include sports, fishing, snowmobiling and family activities.
Marie Rock, Program Manager
My name is Marie Rock. I was born in Minneapolis, MN. My parents owned a farmhouse in Forest Lake, MN where I went to school as a kid. When I was 11, we moved to Phoenix, AZ, where I landed most of my teenage years. I graduated from Maryvale High School in Phoenix in 1981.
After high school I got my first taste of radio while working at an Employment Agency as an Employment Counselor. I participated in a radio contest that Jonathon Brandmeir at KZZP was holding to get locals to read the news. I wrote my essay, and was chosen. After I did my bit, I was approached by an Agent who asked me to cut a radio commercial. I cut a commercial for “Hooters” in Tempe, AZ. It paid $25.00, and all I had to say was “it’s Hooterful”.
After living in Denver, Colorado for a few years, I moved to MN. I had my two kids and went to work for the Minnesota Chippewa Tribe as a Secretary. After a year I moved to the Bureau of Indian Affairs and worked there for 10 years in the WELSA project at first, then moved to Contracting. I left the Bureau in 1996 at the GS-9 level as a Warranted Contracting Officer and Self-Determination Specialist. During this time, I held a part time position as an Announcer for C.D. Broadcasting in Bemidji; aka KJ104.
After being laid off from the Bureau, and C.D. Broadcasting was bought out by R.P. Broadcasting, I went to work for R.P. full-time as an Announcer. I moved up to Promotions Director, and eventually added Assistant Program Director to my title. I worked in that building for 12 years – in various shifts on two stations (one Adult Contemporary, the other Classic Country) with my last shift being a morning show host and a Friday night 80’s show host. After working for R.P. Broadcasting, and a few casino jobs later, I decided to attend college.
I attended Bemidji State University in 2004 and graduated in December 2009 with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Psychology, and a minor emphasis in Sociology. After college I went to work for Oshki Manidoo – White Earth’s Adolescent Treatment Center in Bemidji. I worked there from April 2010 to May 2011 as a Youth Counselor. I really enjoyed working with kids, but the call of radio came back and I left for the job as Program Director for KOJB here in Cass Lake.
I really enjoy my job, and look forward to working with the volunteers at the station. I presently live north of Bemidji with my husband Lee and my two cats – Drakaar (who is part Bobcat) and Diablo. I have two grown kids – Lexi and Justin, and two grandchildren – Caleb and Christine, with one more on the way. I am thankful to my mother - Jan Rock - for all of her assistance while I was in college and her help today, and my father - Samuel Rock - for the same, may he rest in peace.
Tracy O'Brien, Office Manager
Hi! I am Tracy O'Brien, I was born in Minneapolis, MN and I am a Leech Lake Band Member. My family and I moved from Minneapolis when I was about 9 years old to Bena. we lived in Bena for about 3 years and moved again to Sugar Point. I went to Remer High School up to the 11th grade, played high school sports including basketball for 6 years.
We moved back to Bena halfway through my 11th grade year, where I went to Cass Lake High School, graduating in 1983.
After high school I went to work as a receptionist for the Leech Lake Education Department. I worked there for a couple of years before moving to Minneapolis. I stayed in Minneapolis a couple of years working for the Holiday Inn Hotel Industry.
I moved back to the Leech Lake area and worked for the Leech Lake RTC and then at Leech Lake Headstart.
In 2000, I started working as a receptionist for the Leech Lake Gaming Division. After a few months as their receptionist I interviewed and was selected for a job within their Training Department. I worked in this department for about six months before interviewing again and being selected to work in the Employment Department as a Human Resources Associate. I stayed with Leech Lake Gaming for six years.
In 2006, I went to work for the Leech Lake Reservation Tribal Referral Program. After about six to eight months I transferred into the Leech Lake Homelessness Program as an advocate for Homelessness on the Leech Lake Reservation. I worked in this program for fours years, assisting in the opening of the new Leech Lake Reservation Homeless Shelter. I also assisted in securing a $50,000 a year, youth homelessness grant for the Leech Lake Reservation.
I have four awesome children; Tashina, Tahnee, Dennis and Braedon, and five grandchildren.
Although I have only been with KOJB a short time, I find it to be very enjoyable with an excellent staff that are friendly and helpful. I believe working for the new KOJB Radio Station will be a new and rewarding experience for me.