Rosalie Trombley Community Celebration

Rosalie Trombley Community Celebration

Rosalie Trombley and Big 8 sculpture with bouquet of flowers at night with Caesars Windsor in background

Do you know who the "girl with the golden ear" is?

It’s Rosalie Trombley, a pioneer in music radio broadcasting.

She started her career here at CKLW (a Windsor-Ontario based station) as a part-time switchboard operator and receptionist, then accepted a position in the music library, and after learning the ins and outs of how a Top 40 radio station worked – got a full-time position as CKLW's music director.

In her position as a music director, she shaped many lives through the power of music. For the listener, she gave them hits that became part of their childhood and core memories, and for artists, she had a huge influence on their careers. It’s been said that artists from all genres would sit on the couch at CKLW waiting for a chance to meet with her to check out their music.

Rosalie passed in 2021, but her legacy and influence still lives on today. She has been inducted into the Motor City (Detroit) Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Canadian Music Week Broadcasters Hall of Fame.

To learn more about Rosalie, watch this video from My Travelling Backpack.

Watch the highlights video from the commemorative sculpture unveiling ceremony!

Open Streets Windsor "The Big 8" Kilometre Edition and the Rosalie Trombley Community Celebration

On Sunday, September 17, 2023, Open Streets Windsor hosted special entertainment at each of our 8 hubs to honour Big 8 radio pioneer Rosalie Trombley’s contributions to the performing arts! In addition to Open Streets Windsor, the Rosalie Trombley Community Celebration included the following:

  • Unveiling of the Rosalie Trombley Commemorative Sculpture at the corner of Riverside Drive East and McDougall Street:
    • With the Open Streets Windsor route open and folks exploring the city, members of Rosalie Trombley’s family, artist Donna Jean Mayne, sponsors, partners, media, and other very special guests joined Mayor Dilkens and City Councillors for the official unveiling of the Rosalie Trombley Commemorative Sculpture. The sculpture is funded by the City of Windsor with generous support from St. Clair College. The interpretive panel and corresponding tribute website are funded by the City in partnership with AM800 CKLW-Bell Media.
  • Grand Opening of the Temporary Rosalie Trombley Commemorative Exhibition at the Chimczuk Museum, 401 Riverside Drive West:
    • Over at Museum Windsor’s Chimczuk Museum location, the temporary Rosalie Trombley Commemorative Exhibition (running thru winter 2024) had a ribbon cutting and grand opening ceremony in the afternoon. Remarks from family, dignitaries, and special guests kicked things off as the exhibition opened to the public. The Trombley family worked hand-in-hand with the exhibition developers to provide an experience that includes biographical information, stories of Rosalie’s life, musician features, records, audio recordings, fashion, vintage items and artifacts from the Big 8, awards, tributes and more. The exhibition was researched, designed, created and installed by Chris Renaud and the team at HCA Mindbox.
  • Screening of “Radio Revolution: The Rise and Fall of the Big 8” at The Capitol Theatre’s Kelly Theatre, 121 University Avenue West:
    • Presented in partnership with WIFF (Windsor International Film Festival), and screened at the Capitol Theatre’s intimate Kelly Theatre, Michael McNamara’s 2004 documentary covers nearly every aspect of the iconic radio station’s blaze of glory, from the technological wizardry behind its amplified “boom thump” signal to the ways CKLW furthered the careers of artists like Alice Cooper, The Guess Who, and Tony Orlando.
  • “The Big 8 CKLW” Remembers Rosalie at The Capitol Theatre’s Pentastar Theatre, 121 University Avenue West:
    • The historic Capitol Theatre was the backdrop for an evening of stories and music to remember Rosalie Trombley. Special guests Ted Richards, Pat Holiday, Les Garland, and others were on hand for a unique trip into the musical past of Windsor, Detroit, Canada and the United States through the lens of the life of Rosalie Trombley as told by some of those who remember her best.