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HUNTER VALLEY, AUSTRALIA -- Dierks Bentley surprised Felicity Urquhart backstage before his performance at the CMC Rocks the Hunter Festival on March 17, when he presented her with the 2011 CMA International Country Broadcaster Award. CMA Board member Rob Potts, CEO of Rob Potts Entertainment Edge, and GAC's "Headline Country" host/executive producer Storme Warren were both on hand for the presentation.
Urquhart was selected as the Award recipient in late 2011, but the announcement and presentation were saved to be made during the CMC Rocks the Hunter Festival, which is produced by Rob Potts Entertainment Edge, Chugg Entertainment, and CMC (Country Music Channel). Bentley headlined the Saturday night show as part of the Australian leg of his "Country and Cold Cans Tour." Warren, whose "Headline Country" airs on CMC in Australia, hosted the main stage.
Urquhart became the host of ABC (Australian Broadcasting Corporation) Radio's long-running national Country Music program, "Saturday Night Country," three years ago. A Golden Guitar Award-winning singer/songwriter, Urquhart is credited with re-energizing the program with her fresh spin and contemporary approach. Under her guidance, "Saturday Night Country" has reclaimed its top position among Country Music media outlets in Australia.
"I am truly shocked by this Award and consider it such an honor," said Urquhart. "Thank you CMA for this acknowledgement. Presenting 'Saturday Night Country' nationally every week is a passion and brings me great enjoyment. The support of ABC local radio makes Country Music accessible and current from anywhere in Australia. It is wonderful to be part of their programming. I must importantly thank John Nutting who handed his show to me after 17 years. His faith in me is the reason I am in radio."
"'Saturday Night Country' is an institution on Australian radio," said Potts. "Felicity took on the hosting role three years ago. It was a huge challenge for her to take over from the 17-year host and legendary broadcaster John Nutting, a former winner of the CMA International Country Broadcaster Award. However, she has proven totally up to the task and has now stamped her own style and feel on the show, achieving additional ratings success. She is a very worthy winner of this important international CMA Award"
The CMA International Broadcaster Award recognizes outstanding achievement by radio broadcasters outside the United States who have made important contributions toward the development of Country Music in their country. Previous winners are listed at CMAworld.com.