Radio personality Princess Stormm does great things at work as it is, but she’s gone the extra mile for the Harris-Stowe State University community. Read more from Danielle Brown at The St. Louis American.
Community engagement and outreach are as much a part of radio as playing the hottest songs on air and interviewing music’s biggest stars.
Afternoon media personality and assistant program director Princess Stormm’s nearly 10-year journalism career has included serving the community and philanthropy. When she’s not entertaining St. Louis and Metro East listeners on Hot 104.1’s airwaves, or fulfilling her assistant program director duties for Hot 104.1 and 96.3 The Lou, she dedicates her time to youth, especially young girls.
She grew up as “the baby” of her family and her mother’s only daughter. She didn’t have an older sister to help guide and mold her. But she instills the values and lessons she learned over the years into young girls.
“I always tell my mentees not to do what I do, but strive to be better than me,” Stormm said. “There’s not a right or a wrong way to live life. Do what’s best for you.”
During school visits, she’s never shy about sharing her educational experiences. It not only involved her moving a lot and transitioning to different schools throughout the region. She also, at one point, was enrolled in an alternative school.
“They can relate to me because I show them messing up doesn’t make your story end,” Stormm said. “People sometimes feel when they get in trouble or something happens, that’s the end of their journey, but it’s not. That’s just a part of it.”
Her mentees usually connect with her on social media, where they can apply for internships or inquire about her mentoring program “A Princess Within.” The program’s goal is to help girls find self-value while completing activities that include Painting With A Twist, vision boards and more.
Aside from her continuous mentoring and journalism profession, Stormm recently added financial aid assistance to her resume. In honor of her mother, she and Harris-Stowe State University partnered for the “Angela Barnes Malone Live and Learn in the Lou Scholarship.
“I wanted to do something in honor of my mom ,” Stormm said. “She helped me through my journey. My mom paid for me to go to school, I’m not in debt from college. She really believes in my vision and has always been there for me. I wanted to give her flowers and recognize her while she’s alive, I appreciate her.”
The award will be given to an incoming HSSU freshman and the money can be used toward any of their school costs.
Stormm said she and Harris-Stowe exceeded expectations, raising $8,000 for this year’s recipient A’Maree Nash, who will attend in the fall.
“I want the scholarship to be an annual thing where I can host galas, raise money and more,” Stormm said. “I want to make sure people who look like me, act like me, and talk like me understand it’s possible to go where you wanna be.”
Radio wasn’t a profession Stormm originally envisioned herself doing. Early childhood education, with hopes of becoming a preschool teacher, had been her goal.
She acknowledged she wasn’t an early riser and that education wasn’t a good fit for her. She changed her major to communication and hasn’t skipped a beat.
At 19, she began as a Hot 104.1 intern while enrolled at the University of Missouri-St.Louis. After she graduated a year later she was hired as a board operator.
“When I first got into radio I used to say ‘I’m gonna have my own email one day, I’ll be the boss one day,’” Stormm said.
“I used my planner and created a job checklist to help me tackle how to get to where I am now. It feels good being from St. Louis and having my peers, old classmates and other people witness my come up and see I made it happen.”
A new program director, Boogie D, took a chance on the young talent and hired her to be on air with DJ Sinamin doing Ladies Night Radio.
DJ Shay Money was brought on staff to replace Sinamin, and the show’s ratings continued to climb, and the duo made history together.
“I became the first female in St. Louis to do nights and have a number one show for over a year,” Stormm said. “That was the first time it ever happened for an all-female show to dominate nights.”
Sinamin, Shay and Boogie had left when another program director Derrick Greene, came to the station. He promoted Stormm to a full-time night jock slot.
At the height of the pandemic, Stormm switched to afternoon drive weekdays 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. for her show #TheStormmShow and she stepped into the role of assistant program director for Hot 104.1 and 96.3 The Lou.
“Everybody in radio always tells me that my story is rare because most people don’t become an [apd] in their hometown,” Stormm said. “You usually have to leave and come back. To even be on the PM drive is unheard of.”
#TheStormmShow begins with trap trivia. Stormm asks listeners if they’re knowledgeable at specific rap lyrics, classic Black movies and more.
The 4 p.m. hour is much different. The media veteran is also a mother to a 2-year-old son. After the birth of her son, she felt inspired to incorporate a motherhood segment called Mom 2 Mom into her show. It was a risk because it’s much different from what she’s typically done, but she saw the bigger picture and took that leap.
“I pose a question to all the mothers and motherly figures about a specific conversation piece and have them call in to discuss it,” Stormm said.
“Parenting starts at home, it’s the parents job to teach their children how to be respectful to everyone around them. It’s also the parents’ role to make their child feel comfortable with talking to them about anything.”
KMJ the DJ joins Stormm at 5 p.m. for the Show Me Mix and the 6 p.m. hour is about all things media and entertainment.
“I’m happy to do what I love in the city that I’m from, it’s rare,” Stormm said. “It’s possible to do what you wanna do. Don’t be afraid to go out and try it. There’s no right or wrong way to do it. Keep going and remember women can do it all.”