Northern Nevada Business Weekly: Tell us about your company and what you do.
Eddie Floyd: I founded Nevada Matters about 15 years ago. I am a host of a three-hour news show Monday through Friday from 6 to 9 a.m. on 101.3 FM. We rebroadcast my show on other radio stations and on 99.1 FM talk, our Fox News affiliate. I am in charge of sales, marketing and creating new shows.
NNBW: How did you get into this?
Floyd: Many years ago I owned a real estate company here in town that specialized in manufactured housing. I started with 22-minutes of airtime where I did the Saturday night movie on Fox television and promoted my business and company and got advertisers. Bob Carroll, Mr. Radio, a dear friend of mine, said to me to do a radio show on KSRN. I started my first show there, a 30-minute talk show every Sunday at 6 a.m. It was called Wheel Estate. Interviewed so many politicians, and the then Secretary of State, Dean Heller, said to me, “All you ever talk about is Nevada matters. You should change the name of the show.” That is how it all started.
NNBW: What do you like most about this gig?
Floyd: Radio truly is not a profession; it is a disease, and if you catch it, there is no cure. When I can’t even walk any more, I have plans to do radio shows from my barn called Barn Yarns. It gets into your blood and you love it because you get to meet so many wonderful people.
NNBW: What is the most difficult aspect of your job?
Floyd: Keeping peace from the far left and the far right on a political show.
NNBW: Is this the career you had envisioned for yourself?
Floyd: No. In college, what I wanted to do was be a PR man for either an entertainer or a politician. That is what I studied. I became the alumni secretary PR man for the University of Florida upon graduation, and after about a year I was hired away by Jack Lemmon, the comedian. I worked for two years on the annual Comedy Golf Classic tournament and met everyone from Bob Hope to Bing Crosby.
NNBW: You ran into some legal trouble a few years back and spent time at Federal Correctional Institute, Terminal Island. How did that experience shape your outlook on life, and what did you gain from it?
Floyd: I spent 2.5 years at Terminal Island. It hurt me. I had an insurance company, a mobile home dealership, a real estate company, money, property, and I lost it all. But here’s the amazing thing. I learned the true value of family and friends. My family and my friends became stronger.
NNBW: What was your first job?
Floyd: My first job was the only job ever in my life that I received a salary instead of a commission. I was a lifeguard when I was 17 in Atlantic Beach, Fla.
NNBW: Have any advice for someone who wants to enter your profession?
Floyd: This is from the bottom of my heart: If you are interested in entering the radio profession, my advice is to come see me. I will go out of my way to help you get involved.
NNBW: What are your favorite hobbies or pastimes? How do you spend your time away from work?
Floyd: I work with my wife at Wynema Ranch, our ranch just north of Hallelujah Junction. It is a wild horse sanctuary. I spend time with my grandkids. Weekend mornings I spend fishing at Frenchman’s Lake, then I come back to the ranch and mend fence or work with the horses.
NNBW: If you could live your life over again, what one thing would you change?
Floyd: I learned this from prison: the importance of time spent with family as opposed to time spent building businesses and careers. I spend more time with grandchildren today than I ever spent with my children, and that brings a tear to my eye when I think about it. When you are put away in a federal prison, and you only get to visit on a weekend and sometimes it’s behind plate glass with a telephone, you realize the importance of family, of friendship, and of time shared.
NNBW: If you had one memory you could hold on to for the rest of your life, what would that be?
Floyd: The birth of my children. When your children are born, and the doctor hands you that child, the euphoria that you feel is amazing … I can’t even imagine what it would feel like to be a mother. The only other time I felt that where it wasn’t a birth of one of my children was when my daughter asked me to attend the birth of my second grandson.
NNBW: What did you dream of becoming when you were a kid?
Floyd: A fisherman. I am a Minorcan-descent fisherman. My father ran fishing boats in Mayport, Fla. until the day he died, and I hung out on the docks in Mayport, a little fishing village.
NNBW: If you had enough money to retire right now, would you? Why or why not?
Floyd: No, absolutely not. I love the radio.
NNBW: Where’s your perfect vacation spot?
Floyd: On a deep-sea fishing boat with wonderful living quarters where you could fish during the day, anchor at night, and a take a boat into an island like I used to do when I was a young boy. That would be my perfect vacation — crystal clear waters, fishing, scuba diving, but then going in and seeing the local cultures on the islands.
NNBW: Why did you choose a career in northern Nevada? What do you like most about working/living here?
Floyd: I was playing golf at the La Jolla Country club as we did the annual Comedy Golf Classic. On the 18th hole, Bob Hansberger, the then-president of Boise-Cascade, asked me to be the PR guy for their recreational lands division at Incline Village. I drove here in a little ’68 Porsche, and as I was putting my suitcase on the bed I got a phone call. The guy said, “My name is Lloyd, and I’d like to take you to lunch tomorrow.” The next day Lloyd Dyer, president and CEO of Harrah’s and Bill Harrah came to my door. We got in a limousine and flew to Sacramento for lunch on Mr. Harrah’s Canadian-built jet. I hadn’t even been in Reno 24 hours, and those were the first people I met. I said to myself, “Damn, I’m not leaving.”
Know someone whose perspective you would like to share with NNBW readers? Email reporter Rob Sabo at email@example.com or call him at 775-850-2146.