Lil G is going home. One of Savannah's favorite radio broadcasters is moving to Atlanta to accept a promotion. Although he's excited to return to his hometown, he knows he's going to miss Savannah and the many friends he's made here.
"I'll be working for the Cumulus Broadcasting corporate headquarters in Atlanta," says Lil G, whose real name is Gerald Arrington Jr. "I came to Savannah from Atlanta specifically to go to Savannah State."
Lil G first got into broadcasting at West Georgia College in Atlanta, where a friend had a radio station.
"He was one of the first to interview Outkast before they got really big," he says.
After Lil G got involved with the Savannah State University radio station, local gospel singer and broadcaster Lester Leck White introduced him to Cumulus Broadcasting.
"He allowed me to come in and do an internship on his show," Lil G says.
"That's how I got started here in Savannah. Who would know 10 to 15 years later, I would be his boss?
"I graduated in 2001 with a degree in mass communications," he says. "I was working for Cumulus while I was in school, and after I graduated, they sent me to Houston."
A year later, the station's format was switched from rhythm and blues and hip hop to oldies.
"From Houston, they allowed me to come to Savannah with a pay raise," he says.
"I was named the assistant program director and got a night job.
"Five years later, I became the program director of E93 and 103.9 Magic and was a night jock. I've been holding down that title ever since."
It's Savannah's people he'll miss most of all, Lil G says.
"Savannah was good to me," he says. "Savannah saw me grow from a college kid to a husband with two kids. I'll miss people welcoming me into their homes, community and schools."
Through his own nonprofit organization, LG Community Outreach, Lil G established the Teachers Ball and a father-daughter Valentine's Day dinner dance.
"It is much needed," he says. "Between 300 to 400 fathers and daughters come out for that."
Lil G also helped students prepare for the annul CRCT school testing by holding pep rallies every year.
"I go to about 12 schools around Savannah and pump kids up and get them ready for the CRCT," he says.
IF YOU GO
What: Live broadcast with Lil G
When: 6-10 p.m. July 26
Where: B & D Burgers, 209 W. Congress St.
"I've also done some high school football games. I was a live sports anchor for WGSA, broadcasting for high school football."
Lil G was bestowed that appellation by his mother.
"People don't know where the Lil G comes from, but I'm a junior," he says.
"My mom used to always yell for us, and she'd differentiate by calling me Little Gerald or Lil G and it stuck with me. Now I'm older and Lil G is not so little any more."
Lil G's wife, Latisha, is a special education teacher at Beach High School. Their daughters are Ashley, 4, and Tamia, 10.
To celebrate his time in Savannah, Lil G will host his final broadcast July 26 at B & D Burgers on Congress Street. Performers will include Mr. Meezy and the late rapper Camoflauge's daughter, Flau'Jae. City officials are expected to attend and award Lil G with a proclamation, as will the Chatham County Youth Commission.
Other events included an appearance at Frozen Paradise and a block party and barbecue at Cumulus' local office. Chili's, where he is a regular customer, will give a going-away party July 25.
"Everyone I talk to says it's a bittersweet moment," he says. "They're sorry to see me go, but happy I'm moving on.
"I'm going to miss Savannah. I'm really going to miss the people; I'm really going to miss the station. They're like family. We've been together over 15 years, which is a long time."