Molly McHugh: Toledo's Irish Radio Host Heard Around the World
My name is Molly McHugh. Even though I was born and raised in Toledo, Ohio, my family roots run deep in Ireland. My father was born in Galway, Ireland to 1 of 14 children. Growing up I went to Ireland multiple times visiting aunts, uncles, and cousins. Even though my father moved to the United States before I was born, he never lost his passion for his country.
He had a prominent Irish accent that my friends thought was great even though I barely noticed, and since I could remember he was the co-host of Echo’s of Ireland, a live radio show broadcast worldwide every Sunday afternoon at the iHeartMedia studios in downtown Toledo. Each week my Dad and his fellow Irish friend co-host John Connolly shared Irish stories, laughs and Irish music. Growing up I thought it was so cool that my Dad was on a radio show that family members could hear in Ireland. I had no idea that one day I would be carrying on this role myself.
Although I enjoyed growing up in Toledo, I was anxious to move. After obtaining my Bachelor’s in Human Resource Management from UT, I moved to New York City and started my career in HR. Four years in NYC went by quick, and it was time for my next adventure--Ireland! I wanted to explore the country my father was from, so I moved to Galway to obtain my Master’s Degree.
After spending a year in Galway, I returned to NYC to focus to my career on Employee Benefits Consulting with the Sequoia Consulting Group. After 10 years of big city life, in 2018 I decided to return home to Toledo where my mother and sister were. I was elated (and to be honest shocked!) when John asked me to carry on the Irish Echo and join the radio show as his co-host. I know how much John and this show meant to my dad, and being able to carry on his legacy each week is such an honor.
The job comes with big shoes to fill – my father held this role for 28 years! My father, Ted, was a great storyteller, and what I cherish most about being co-host on Echo’s of Ireland is sharing stories about my Dad with John and playing some of his favorite music we listened to growing up.
I never had dreams of being a radio host. In fact, this isn’t even my full-time job! However, I’ve had some great mentors that have guided me along the way and given me the tools I need to succeed. And that’s why organizations like Women of Toledo are crucial. Providing guidance, resources, and even just words of encouragement can so such a long way, and I’ve seen how Women of Toledo provides all three to women in our community.
Molly McHugh is the co-host of Echo's of Ireland, a live radio show on 1230AM, the iHeartMedia app, and their website. Listen live every Sunday from 11:30am-1:30pm EST as hosts Molly and John Connolly share stories, laughs and music from Ireland. Tune in to their St. Patrick's Day episode where they will be discussing their newly launched website!