“The program was in Spanish in the beginning and there were some calls from people who complained,” said Andrade, who added that he was startled by scarcity of Latino-centered programming and general news in the area.
He said he knew that radio, particularly talk radio, could offer them the news and education they hungered for and give Andrade the chance to put down roots that meant something.
“Miami is in a beautiful state with lots of opportunities, but it was too busy and had lots of competition with Hispanic media outlets,” he said. “But here in Delaware was a state of opportunities. There were no Spanish stations, no competition.
“I chose to be the head of the mouse and not the tail of the lion.”
In 2010, Andrade leased a frequency for Maxima 95.3 FM from Great Scott Broadcasting Network. That frequency now reaches 95 percent of Delmarva’s Latino Community.
In addition to offering Latin music, Andrade opted to produce and broadcast shows that featured experts in legal, financial, and faith-based areas but also met the cultural heritage of his audience.
He said he’s committed to helping the region grow economically and culturally.
“Every day, we set out to broadcast local, live shows that speak to the interests of our listeners, hosted by local personalities who take phone calls and respond to the audience,” said Andrade. “That is what radio is supposed to sound like.”
The Voice Radio Network employs a staff of 30, and in Andrade’s ‘what’s next’ strategy, he hopes to expand.
“I truly want to make sure this company is going to be strong in the business we do,” said Andrade. “We want to grow and open new stations in Wilmington, Pennsylvania, Baltimore and New York.
Andrade also hosts a television show on ABC Channel 47 called Latino Flavor. But he said his first love remains radio. “Radio is what makes me happy,” said Andrade. “I don’t work for radio, I live for radio. I can do it for 24 hours and never get tired.”