REPORTER Maddie Wines spoke with Phil Beer about how he became a popular radio presenter.
A LAKE Eppalock man who was bullied as a child because of his stammer is making his mark as a radio presenter.
Phil Beer, who broadcasts two shows a week on Phoenix FM, came runner-up in one of the categories of a prestigious national broadcast competition.
The self-confessed film-buff was shortlisted for his radio music program in the Community Broadcasting Association of Australia awards.
Phil's music program features soundtracks from war movies made in the 1950s and 1960s.
They include The Great Escape, The Bridge on the River Kwai, Battle of Britain and Dam Busters.
He has only been broadcasting on Phoenix FM for about 14 months.
Phil said he had never expected to come as far as he had with his radio work.
He said he was teased by his peers when he was younger and said the traumatic childhood memories were always in the back of his mind.
"I have got a lot out of (radio) personally," he said.
"As a child I used to stammer very badly.
"In the classroom I use to get picked on and bashed up but I always fought back, that is the lesson I tell people who are bullied.
"When I was in the school room and had to read a chapter of the book (the bullies) always sat behind me hissing and poking rulers into the back of my neck or they would put ink over my books.
"At university I was told by a lecturer I should take allocution lessons because I would never be able to speak in public.
"I think radio has really helped me though.
"I hope that it encourages people who have a stammer to overcome it."
Phil said he had always had a keen interest in radio but it wasn't until Phoenix FM offered him a broadcast show that his career really took off.
"When I was at TAFE I did multimedia (and for the) final display of (my work) I wrote a radio play," he said.
"Phoenix approached me and asked if I wanted to present radio.
"I thought about it for four weeks and before I knew it I was on-air.
"(I am very thankful) to Phoenix for giving me the chance to do it in the first place.
"I never thought I would ever be on radio full stop but somehow I ended up there and I just try and do my best."
Phil said he was "shell-shocked" with the award nomination and was grateful for the opportunity to be involved in radio.
The CBAA awards are designed to promote excellence and acknowledge the accomplishments of community radio stations across Australia.
"I had a lot of anxiety because I didn't know what I was up against or what they expected of me," he said.
"I just did something that I enjoyed doing.
"It was Phoenix committee that said they would like me to enter into the awards.
"Not for one moment did I ever think I would get anywhere."
Phil hopes to give back to the community through his radio work.
He said he hoped to offer listeners programs with a bit of difference.
"(I want to) get people to recognise that there are a lot of community stations out there trying to do something to give back to the public," he said.
"My main aim is to give back something to the public and hope people are listening and tuning in."
Phil co-ordinates a movie club when he is not busy with his radio presenting.
The recently set-up club attracts aspiring producers, directors, actors and film fans.
Phil presents his radio show on Wednesday nights from 8pm to 10pm and on Sundays from 1pm to 4pm.