Best Spanish-language radio personality - 2013
Armando Pérez Roura
Like his lifelong foe Fidel Castro, Armando Pérez Roura refuses to fade quietly into the annals of history. The 85-year-old radio commentator is still the loudest voice of El Exilio hardliners manning the Spanish-language airwaves. Born January 11, 1928, in Mantanzas, Cuba, Pérez Roura began his broadcasting career when he was 15 years old. After fleeing the island in 1962, he quickly became one of Miami's first Cuban-American rabble-rousers. In the 1980s, Pérez Roura founded Radio Mambí, where he still hosts morning and afternoon programs with a single goal: toppling his country's communist regime. Earlier this year, Univision rechristened Radio Mambí's studio the Armando Pérez Roura Studio as recognition for his contributions. He refuses to retire until Cuba is free. At a time when Univision, which now owns Radio Mambí, is broadening the appeal of its Miami AM Spanish-language stations, Pérez Roura is one of the lone voices keeping conservative Cuban-American radio alive in Miami. His diatribes are laden with questionable hyperbole, such as regularly comparing the Cuban plight to the persecution of Jews in World War II. But it's that spooky, conspiratorial tone that makes Pérez Roura a rare gem of originality on the radio today.