By Steve Kabelowsky Contributing Columnist Published May 03, 2012 at 1:02 PM

In the mornings, she's the one who guides you though the commute to work with more music than any other station in the market.

Gretchen Bartlett is the new host at 94.5 The Lake WLWK-FM, where she is excited to be behind the microphone.

"With this you hope to leave a long-lasting impression on people," said Bartlett, who has been in the morning drive chair for the last week and a half. "It is what I want to do here."

Bartlett has worked in radio city – home of The Lake, WTMJ-AM and WTMJ-TV – before as a producer and part-time promotions assistant. For the past seven and a half years she has been working in promotions and on air for a number of Journal Broadcast Group stations in Knoxville, Tenn. This is a chance to come back to a city that she loves.

"I'm looking forward to what this can bring. Just like they say on Bravo, 'Watch what happens,'" Bartlett said.

This is the fourth year the station has been in what we could call a giant jukebox format, playing everything from current and older pop, rock and a little country. Programming Director John Roberts was ecstatic to add Bartlett to the mix.

"She has a positive energy. And that goes a long way, not only for the listeners but with everyone she works with," Roberts said while recounting the story of how he selected Bartlett for the post. Roberts first heard her delivery while conducting a search within the group for someone who could track for them on nights and weekends.

"We found out from our listeners that they like the music in the morning, but to be in the Top 5 stations, we need to add extra dimensions," Roberts said, referring to elements like traffic reports and staffers from WTMJ-TV providing news and information updates. "We are starting to do that here. These (getting Bartlett in place and expanding other elements in the morning) are the building blocks of the next level."

Election season: WTMJ-TV Ch. 4 will be working with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Wisconsin Public Television and Wisconsin Public Radio for two debates around the state governor recall election. As part of what it calls its Red White and Blue 2012 election coverage, the first debate among the Democratic primary candidates will air tomorrow on Ch. 4.2, the digital over-the-air feed that can also be found on Time Warner Ch. 999. That debate will start at 7 p.m.

The general debate between the winners of the May 8 primary election will air on Ch. 4 on May 31. The general election is set for Tuesday, June 5.

Roadway art: Dave Olson, an artist with Lamar Milwaukee, is in Miami this week to pick up a Gold Obie award. The honor recognizes the best work among the Outdoor Advertising Association of America membership.

Final four: One singer will be eliminated in the live broadcast of "American Idol" tonight on WITI-TV Fox 6. In the performance show Wednesday, Joshua Ledet lead the pack with soul-filled renditions of "Ain't Too Proud To Beg" by The Temptations and the Bee Gees' "To Love Somebody." Ledet, Hollie Cavanagh, Phillip Phillips, Skylar Laine and 16-year-old Jessica "Bebe Chez" Sanchez find out their fate at 7 p.m. tonight.

Steve Kabelowsky Contributing Columnist

Media is bombarding us everywhere.

Instead of sheltering his brain from the onslaught, Steve embraces the news stories, entertainment, billboards, blogs, talk shows and everything in between.

The former writer, editor and producer in TV, radio, Web and newspapers, will be talking about what media does in our community and how it shapes who we are and what we do.