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Former Penticton radio personality publishes autobiography

Former Penticton radio host Dennis Walker recently published "The Little Red Radio," a story about his life in radio.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED/Dennis Walker
November 27, 2020 - 8:30 PM

Well known former Okanagan radio host Dennis Walker has been putting his COVID-19 isolation time to good use.

Walker recently published his autobiography The Little Red Radio, which details his multi-decade career in radio broadcasting.

Walker began his career in the 1970s, volunteering with local cable television and working minor hockey games as an official scorekeeper, positions that eventually got him on radio in his hometown of Creston.

The story climaxes during Walker’s work on CIGV-FM in Penticton in the third decade of his career. He spent 22 years at the Penticton radio station.

Laid off from the radio station during a corporate takeover, Walker started a radio station in his kitchen and shortly after found a position at a new radio station opening up in Cranbrook.

The book starts with Dennis’ early career at CKOO radio in Osoyoos in the mid-1980s, where he worked with Tom Shields. It was in Osoyoos that Walker learned the importance of connecting with local people and events. 

Walker spent five years in Osoyoos and also worked in Kelowna and Vernon in the Okanagan.

Walker is known for his ability to make everyone he interviews sound like a celebrity. The self-taught radio personality has a story to tell as he continues his unique way of presenting radio.

He’s also known for his year-round devotion to bicycle commuting in both Penticton and Cranbrook.

“There have been some long bike rides and peddling to and from work year round, but it’s much colder in Cranbrook in winter, although it is sunnier,” Walker says.

He’s been the recipient of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal, was named Penticton’s Man of the Year in 2003, and has two B.C. Fruit Growers reporting awards. He’s also placed in the top five of B.C. Small Business, has been awarded the Chamber of Commerce Community Service Award and was recognized several times by Okanagan Life magazine as TV/radio personality of the year.

He’s seen enough of Southern British Columbia to know it’s going to be a difficult choice when it comes time to pick a place to retire.

“I miss Penticton. My wife is from Thailand. The East Kootenay has been good to us. It’s a hard call at this time,” he says.

The Little Red Radio is available now at Dragon’s Den and Sunshine Glass and Mirror in Penticton. It can also be purchased on Amazon.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Steve Arstad or call 250-488-3065 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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