PRESSROOM ARCHIVES: : HEATHER COVINGTON Reflects on Steve Harvey Radio Show Premiere Party


Wow, wow, wow, Steve Harvey is now the host of Celebrity Family Feud, my favorite family tv show since childhood.

It seems so surreal that the same guy I wrapped my arms around began his reign as a disc jockey on Ny’s 107.5 WBLS, and would become so grand on tv. Give the man an applause.

There’s no  shamming here, but Steve was a pretty big dude back then when I met him and astonishingly well dressed.

I am just relaying the facts here of my experiences. If you can’t use the word pudgy, but muscular to describe a person’s size with no malice intended, then they should remove the words from the dictionary. I think it is far more offensive to call someone heavy, obese, thick or fat. If fat is what gives a person their appearance size wise, then fat is what it should be called and no different than calling a person skinny who maybe may not like this word, but for societal reasons we are touchy creatures.

To be more explicit…

It took my entire arm span of both arms to hug Steve Harvey after waiting online as a media guest to meet him. He was sweating and looked uncomfortable greeting his fans, but seemed to have a desire to succeed.

I feel partly responsible for his dramatic loss of weight for many who have forgotten, because he was really agitated about my seemingly making it obvious that I couldn’t meet the fingertips of both my hands.

I was simply hugging him like a Dad figure. Forgive my lack of etiquette back then. He probably went home that day and said, this lady probably felt my love handles through my suit. Now that I think about it, it was wrong to return the hug. Steve simply placed his arm on my waist side while WBLS camera guy took our picture.

I have to admit I am a hugging type if you hug me, but not so much lately, so Steve should feel blessed that he got a big ole’ hug from me. I think I have done remarkably well myself and so what if I am giving myself props. I am the only media figure I am sure who has hugged Steve Harvey’s entire waistline  back then, and before he began all of this phenomenal work. WHEW! I said it! And yes, his staff gave me side eye rolls for treating Steve like a normal human being.

I don’t mind clearing up the fact that he doesn’t like to be bothered while filming his shows all the time, in spite of recent backlash of Harvey requesting that no one to bother him while on the set of Family Feud. He’s the best at what he does, and like I said  in a straightforward way, and has always been insecure about his waistline since the day I hugged him.

There, I said it.

He also, had a big afro back then and I just remember the hair looking really dense.

I looked directly at it because I could not believe how well groomed it looked.

He was real pissed by then, but I told him I circulated a digital magazine cover feature with an interview over at Disilgold. And yes, the man snapped at me, and said, “My folks will take care of that.”

Obviously, he didn’t know who his folks were or that my site was granted a business spotlight on the radio show he would be joining and become the number one radio host nationwide next to Wendy Williams, and priorly by Michael Baisden.

I’ll never forget  how 107.5 FM WBLS in New York supported my Disilgold Magazine publication with a business spotlight on their site. That was really huge for me back then. The radio station which owns Circle of Sisters Expo invited me to showcase my publication and bring along my author friends. I introduced a few on air during the radio station’s live programming of event to their millions of radio listeners. That was the first time I met radio host Wendy Williams and her son. She was signing copies of her book. No one was on her line. I am not kidding. These folks deserve a glow up.

Of course, I couldn’t accept the honor of attending the event without supporting the youth in some way, and so the Children’s Literary Pavilion was born. There was face painting and children’s book authors who read excerpts of their work along with a dance session to the latest music hits .

I not only connected to tens and thousands of my book fans, but my business logo was also, showcased on not one, but two 25 foot banners around Steve Harvey’s Gospel and Comedy Show at the event.

The then, comedy queen hosted his show with his nephew and Jaque’ Reid.

During the time, I promoted my favorite African American literature with one of the finest media teams in the nation. We obtained press passes for every major event and worked together as a team to secure interviews in major newspapers and publications. So much fun.

Mind you, I was just an author minding my business. I rarely approached celebrities, just the ones I knew were in route to success as a historian.

Media really wasn’t my forte’, but it became my strength. As a writer  I found a desire to write history books which entailed interviewing great people.

It was heartwarming to see all of my book and magazine fans attend the event.

Thereafter,  I was then invited to all of Steve Harvey’s events, where I made powerful connections with more media friends in the industry.

Quite a few media did not have established presence, so I took them under my wings and exposed them to my literary network. Each time I promoted an author’s work the media giants would support the literary works.

I felt like God highly favored me.A lot of my folks branched out to work with top media. An iconic revelation.

Steve’s  radio show turned out to become a major success on 107.5 WBLSfm. I was fortunate to witness  part of that great beginning of a media mogul’s journey.

It simply doesn’t get any bigger than having  your  Disilgold ‘Publishing, Publicity, Media and Awards’ Enterprise logo grace the signage of one of the biggest names in media, and as a business spotlight at the Steve Harvey’s Gospel and Comedy Show.

He didn’t know that I had already put out there to the universe that WBLS radio will never be the same again, and to via a very huge literary base. This was a time when email blasts were the norm and social media wasn’t even the it thing.  It was the same base, Michael Baisden,  another talk show radio host thanked me personally on his number one radio station on 98.7KISS FM at the time.


That same year they won the Marconi Award, one of the highest awards in public broadcasting according to the producer at the time. The station was aware of my PR abilities, but all I could do is say great things about Steve and wish him well. I believe my experiences meeting  top media figures like Steve Harvey, Michael Baisden and Wendy Williams, who later on granted me her first televised interviews on my own literary tv show, were part of that literary journey that fueled my very own self fulfilling prophecy and mantra,

‘Greatness recognizes greatness.’

Of course, my confidence in front of the media screen was not as confident as these great media figures. Deep inside I was the writer, and was not sure how I stumbled into the media arena, and other than to connect to literary artists I wished to write about their history in my books.

As an educator, I knew to preserve the history of authors was a stepping stone to motivating future authors, especially young authors and still my number one passion to this day.

I got that Steve Harvey just wanted good people he trusted at the launch of his radio show on WBLS, and to bear witness of his journey.

I never really connected to the host ever again, but trust, I watch anything he’s a part of on tv.

I wasn’t big on showcasing myself alongside celebrities and even though the now talk show host may have not considered himself a big celebrity then, I had predicted he would grow.

I found out later, all of the battles he went through to get to where he is today, but I will say that even back then I saw all the qualities of a star in the making  as  107.5fm WBLS crew felt about me.

It’s an endearing memory and why I am so proud the station is still the number one RNB Radio programming nationwide, and yes, Steve Harvey never left his roots.

by Heather Haliah

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