The Team

Produced by Sherry Hursey and Rick Cowling for Turning On the Light Entertainment

Hosted by Tom Averna


  • Share the Dream with Sherry Hursey and Rick Cowling
  • News Muse: Malayna Dawn


  • Deb Frisch
  • Vernon Howell


Sherry Hursey is an award-winning actress, vocalist, writer and producer whose face and voice are very familiar to television, radio and film audiences worldwide. Most recognized as, Ilene, on the hit series Home Improvement, or Kirsten Dunst’s mother in the Universal blockbuster Bring It On, Sherry has an extensive list of credits from stage to screen. Spreading her wings and following the call of her spirit, Sherry wrote, produced and starred in the uplifting family musical, Lilly’s Light, winner of the KIDSFIRST BEST AWARD! Following, she founded Lilly’s Fostering Hearts,, a non-profit org advocating for displaced and foster youth. This led her to producing PSAs and interstitials for Public TV, as well as, co-creating Smile TV, a web based network dedicated to exclusively positive news. Sherry is now the co-owner of Turning On the Light Entertainment,, where her heart and talents are being fully expressed by writing, producing and distributing inspiring and uplifting positive music and media. Follow her on Facebook or @SherryHursey on Twitter.

Rick Cowling is the co-owner, sound engineer and music supervisorRickBioPic2-260x300 for Aside from being an extremely accomplished musician, multi-instrumentalist, vocalist, writer and producer, Rick has been the guitarist for Kenny Loggins, as well as, touring for five years as the lead singer and keyboard player for Ambrosia. You may even recognize him as the singing pharmacist on Modern Family. As a songwriter and music producer for Capitol records, Sony Playstation, numerous commercials and TV shows such as The Bachelorette, Beverly Hills, 90210 and Teachers on ABC, Rick has created an extensive library of original music and sound design. Rick has also produced music and DVD projects with many major artists including Bonnie Raitt, Gladys Knight, Laura Brannigan, Melissa Manchester, and Bobby Womack.


Tom Averna is Station Manager of emPower Positive Radio and the voice of the station. As a 15-year veteran of radio, in 1999, Averna began to collect “positive” music from children’s andfamily movies and mainstream artists like The Beatles, Michael Jackson, Lee Ann Womack, Sting and many others, and started putting together an Internet radio station.

About this same time, he discovered New Thought and began attending services at CSL Seattle and had made friends who attended Mile Hi in Denver. There he found artists who performed incredible music with a positive message and he knew his mission was to start a station playing not only mainstream music that had a positive message, but the music of these New Thought Indie artists. In April of 2000 Radiopositive was broadcasting on Live 365. In 2002 after being approached by a record promoter, he and Scott Johnson founded the Positive Music Association. Now with his partnership with emPower Music and Arts, he feels he finally has found the team with the desire, vision and talent to make Positive Radio a reality. Follow Empower Positive Radio on Facebook.


Malayna Dawn fell in love with words, music and positive messages as a child, and was a working vocalist by the age of 10, gaining experience in live performance, recording studios, and on camera in TV and film. As an adult, with a Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies, she began working behind-the-scenes (and in front of them!) in radio, television, film, print media, online media and live events, both in the United States and her 12-year home of Sri Lanka.

Malayna has done a ton of positive writing for the web and has authored a spiritual adventure novel: Echoes Across Time. Her mission statement is, “I use my voice–written, spoken or sung–to share my worldview, informing and inspiring joy, abundance and a life well-lived.”  Most recently, she shared positive connections as the producer and host of Pop Conscious: Where Pop Culture and Spirituality Unite! on Unity Online Radio. Learn more about all of her work at


Deb Frisch works as a data analyst, utilizing spreadsheets and databases, but is a musician as well, playing the organ and alto saxophone since childhood. As an adult she has played in a variety of local bands and continues to be a part of a trio called “Blended Energy” where she plays both the sax and keyboard.

Finding herself on the path of spirituality, she believes that every situation happens for a reason and contains a lesson. She attended a Posi Palooza concert about 10 years ago, immediately falling in love with the positive and inspirational messages within these songs.  The motto “Change your music-change your life” has proven to be very true for Debbie. She believes there is something positive in every situation, even thru difficult times. Her new path is to help others see the good in the world by spreading positive news. It’s the pay it forward of positivity.

Vernon Howell Vernonwas a radio announcer at various radio stations in Florida when he fell in love with writing. He wrote radio commercials and public service announcements and then worked as a freelance writer. During his work as a journalist, Howell wrote travel and personal profile articles. As a student at Polk Community College, his creative work was chosen by the college’s reader’s theatre for performance.

Vernon was a Citizen Scholar Student of Writing at the University of Virginia before returning to his home state and graduating from the University of Tampa. When he graduated, class of ’06, he was tied for the oldest graduate in a class of over 800 students and he hopes he serves as a classic example that young at hearts should never say, “Too late.”

During his early days in radio, he interviewed many people from all walks of life, including great artists, politicians and sports figures. He is an award winning public speaker and writer who today, researches, writes, prepares PowerPoint shows and serves as presenter of various presentations for Eckerd College’s OLLI program.