"Fez" Marie Whatley (born Todd Hillier, March 31, 1964), is an American talk radio host and comedian who co-hosts The Ron and Fez Show. From October 9, 2007 to June 27, 2008, Whatley also served as the Executive Producer.
Whatley originally became well known after becoming a producer and contributor for The Ron and Ron Show in Florida. After the show disbanded, Whatley teamed up with Ron Bennington to create The Ron and Fez Show, then titled Ron and Fez Dot Com.
Whatley originally became well known after becoming a producer and contributor for The Ron and Ron Show in Florida. After the show disbanded, Whatley who was formerly a sidekick and producer now teamed up with Ron Bennington as a co-host to create The Ron and Fez Show, then titled Ron and Fez Dot Com. which premiered on New York City radio station WNEW FM on April 17, 2000.
Whatley and Bennington continued on WNEW FM until the end of 2002, as well as being syndicated to several other FM markets around the United States, including WJFK-FM in Washington, DC. After they went off the air in New York City, as well as most of the other markets, they continued to broadcast from WJFK FM, relocating to DC.
On July 19, 2004 Whatley and his longtime pal Ron Bennington returned to the Florida airwaves, airing in the 1 PM to 3 PM slot on Tampa Bay, Florida's The Buzz WBAA-AM 1010 after the station adopted a new talk format, and abandoned its former sports talk format.
The Ron and Fez Show moved to XM Satellite Radio on September 12, 2005 after leaving WJFK 106.7 FM in Washington D.C.
Behind the Laughter
Whatley graduated from Pinellas Park High School in Pinellas Park, Florida in 1982, and received a publication award from the International Thespian Society.
Whatley suffered a mild heart attack on November 9, 2005 which he did not recognize. He went on to host The Ron and Fez Show the next day before consulting a doctor where he was informed he had suffered a heart attack and was also diagnosed with diabetes. An angioplasty was performed and Whatley returned to the show on November 28, 2005. Approximately one year later, Fez left the show again due to chest pains, and needed a second stent put in.
On September 24, 2010 Fez was diagnosed as suffering a third heart attack while in the hospital for treatment for an unrelated medical issue. He was released from the hospital on Monday, September 27 and returned to the show on Wednesday, September 29.
On February 24, 2011, Fez's father, Dick Hillier died in a NYC hospital. Ron Bennington was on-air the next day and in Fez's absence put on an impromptu radio memorial for Fez's father going to break playing Danny Boy. Fez returned to the air on Monday, March 7, and offered a touching remembrance of his father.
On February 24, 2012, Fez came out as gay. Fez had been playing a flamboyant character on the air for more than 20 years, but became increasingly uncomfortable in the role after recognizing his sexual orientation and being unable to publicly embrace it. After admitting his sexuality to his co-host Ron Bennington three years earlier, Fez spoke openly on the air about his issues as a closeted man, referring to his "secret," but had remained unable to say it directly. He chose to come out on the one-year anniversary of his father's death.
Fez has performed the following characters and impersonations throughout his career.
- Fez Whatley
- Nature Boy
- Ric Flair
- Jan Brady
- Andre the Giant
- Dennis the Annoying Neighbor Who Asks for Awful Favors
- Cameltoe Curtis
- Lionel Pillowbiter
- Tossy McSalad
The Roman War Helmet
- Is a diehard Tampa Bay Buccaneers fan
- When he first joined WNEW, he claimed that he was engaged to a woman from Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada. He later confessed that this person didn't exist.
- Later professed his love on the air of Dawn Cumia, Anthony's sister, leading to much mocking from Ron and Soundboard Fez.
- Marched in the 2012 Gay Pride Parade in New York City.
- "Now the blueberry is one that can't work on its own. It has to have something with it like the Kiwi. It's not a standalone fruit."
- "Rude AND rude!"
- "That's all I've got"
Things that have made Fez cry
- His grandmother dying
- His father dying
- Mikey D calling him on his birthday months after Mikey had kept harassing him (while Fez was drinking)
- Opie asking him what which Batman character he wanted to be
- Intern Dana showing off her Facebook fan page that had a bunch of anti-Fez comments on it.
- Having to defend the Elmo puppeteer who had been accused of inappropriately touching children.
- The Other F-Word
- Being compared to Andy Rooney by East Side Dave
- Doing a live read for Mrs. Fields cookies