Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Great List of Bay Area Radio Hall of Fame Inductees

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (July 16, 2008) — Seventeen local broadcasting legends, including
longtime favorites Alex Bennett, Rosie Allen, Renel Brooks-Moon and Dave Sholin, are members
of the Bay Area Radio Hall of Fame’s Class of 2008.
Four of the Bay Area’s most popular sportscasters — Bob Fouts, Russ Hodges, Don Klein and
Roy Storey — are members of the latest class, as is the “World’s First Airborne Traffic Reporter,”
Hap Harper.
The latest group of honorees — the third to be enshrined — will be inducted during a public
ceremony on October 1 in Berkeley. More than 6,000 votes were cast online and in person during
the open balloting period, which ended on July 1.
The complete Class of 2008, listed alphabetically, includes:
® ROSIE ALLEN — Currently the co-anchor of the KGO (810 AM) Afternoon News, Rosie
began her local radio career at Oakland’s KNEW and San Francisco’s KNBR. She moved to
ABC-owned KSFX (103.7 FM) in 1976 as public affairs director, before joining co-owned
KGO a year later as weekend talk show host and part-time news reporter/anchor. In 1984, she
became co-anchor of KGO’s afternoon newscast.
® ALEX BENNETT — Bay Area born and raised, Alex started his broadcasting career at San
Rafael’s tiny KTIM (1510 AM), which he used as a springboard to success in New York City
at WMCA and WPLJ. Upon his triumphant return to San Francisco, Alex became morning
man at KMEL (106.1 FM), KQAK (98.9 FM, “The Quake”) and KITS (105.3 FM, “Live
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105”). He later hosted a technology-oriented talk show on the CNET Radio and, since 2003,
has been one of the stars of Sirius Left (Channel 146) on New York-based Sirius satellite radio.
® RED BLANCHARD — One of broadcasting’s zaniest personalities ever, Red Blanchard
bridged the gap between radio’s network-oriented “golden age” and the disc jockey-driven
“modern era” in the 1950s. Working with a cast of oddball characters – most of them his own
invention – Red gained a fanatical following with his live program on KCBS (740 AM), one of
the last radio shows to be performed before a studio audience in the Bay Area. Popularized the
1950s catch-word “Zorch!”
® RENEL BROOKS-MOON — Renel’s remarkable career has led her from being one of the
last personalities on the original KFRC during its “Big 610” heyday in the 1980s to being one
of the ringleaders of KMEL’s pioneering “Morning Zoo” to full-fledged stardom as host of
“Renel In The Morning” on 98.1 Kiss FM since 1997. The Oakland-born graduate of Mills
College, known to many as the in-stadium voice of the San Francisco Giants, received the most
votes during this year’s Hall of Fame voting, being named on more than 27% of all ballots cast.
® BOB FOUTS — The voice of San Francisco 49ers football in the 1950s, Bob was also a
popular sportscaster and commentator on KSFO (560 AM) as well as on Bay Area television.
His son, the Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback Dan Fouts, followed in Bob’s footsteps as
a respected broadcaster.
® BILL GAVIN — Perhaps best known for creating the industry-standard record tipsheet The
Gavin Report, Bill Gavin was a pioneering disc jockey who created and hosted “Lucky Lager
Dance Time,” which garnered an extensive audience throughout the western United States. In
1958, three years after he began “Dance Time,” Gavin parlayed his knowledge of music into a
mimeographed tipsheet covering Top 40 records, which quickly became a “must read” for
radio station programmers throughout the industry. Bill Gavin died in 1985 at the age of 77.
® HAP HARPER — Radio’s original airborne traffic reporter, Hap was a Marine Corps
lieutenant and pilot during World War II whose friendship with KSFO’s Don Sherwood led to
an on-air role as in-the-air weather reporter. Spotting an auto accident on the Bay Bridge one
day, Hap described the aftermath and helped create a new industry. In addition to KSFO, he
also was a popular personality on KFRC, KNBR and the combined KSFO/KYA-FM. Howard
“Hap” Harper passed away in 2006.
® MIKEL HUNTER HERRINGTON — An innovator, entrepreneur and radio original,
“Captain Mikey” – also known on the air as “Hot Rocks Hunter” and “Oil Can Harry” – was a
Top 40 disc jockey at San Jose’s KLIV (1590 AM) and helped to pioneer the album rock
format at the Southbay’s KOME (98.5 FM); he later repeated that success at L.A.’s KMET. A
noted wine connoisseur, he relocated to Napa later in his career, working at KVON/KVYN
within a cork’s throw of the vineyards. Named to the San Jose Rocks Music Hall of Fame
(2007). Mikel Herrington died in 1997 of leukemia at the age of 62.
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® RUSS HODGES — Educated as an attorney, Kentucky-born Russ Hodges arrived in San
Francisco in 1958 as the voice of the transplanted Giants, working alongside Lon Simmons
(BARHOF Class of 2006) for a dozen years on the team’s radio broadcasts. Known for his
trademark call of “Bye bye baby” on Giants’ home runs, Hodges attained baseball immortality
for his legendary call of Bobby Thomson’s “Shot Heard ’Round The World” (“The Giants win
the pennant! The Giants win the pennant!”) in 1951. Inducted into the broadcasters’ wing of the
Baseball Hall of Fame in 1980, Russ Hodges passed away in 1971 at the age of 61.
® DON KLEIN — One of the Bay Area’s most versatile and knowledgeable sportscasters, Don
Klein served as the play-by-play voice of University of San Francisco basketball, Stanford
football and basketball, San Francisco Seals baseball and hockey, and San Francisco 49ers
football. During the Niners’ glory days in the 1980s, Klein was behind the microphone to
describe all of the memorable plays for six amazing seasons. His broadcasting career spanned
more than fifty years, including as sports anchor on KCBS (740 AM).
® MICHAEL LUCKOFF — The monumental success of San Francisco’s KGO (810 AM) can
be attributed to many factors – great talent, great programming ... and the skilled direction of
Mickey Luckoff, who has served as president and general manager of the station since 1972.
Under his watch, KGO has remained solidly atop the local radio ratings — a position the
station has maintained since the summer of 1978 — while becoming one of the most honored
radio stations in the history of the industry.
® DUDE MARTIN — At the forefront of the Bay Area’s burgeoning western music scene from
the 1930s through the 1950s, Berkeley-raised Dude Martin (born Steve McSwain) and his
band were a staple of local radio and nightclubs. In addition to leading his own western
orchestra, the Nevada Nightherders, Dude hosted programs on KLX, KYA, KSFO and KGO
over the years; at KGO, his morning radio program of familiar tunes, interspersed with
conversation, led to his next venture as one of local television’s first stars on KGO-TV. He
passed away in 1991.
® TERRY McGOVERN — Currently one of the most popular voice actors and coaches in the
industry, Terry McGovern arrived in San Francisco fresh from KDKA/Pittsburgh in 1968 to
become one of the greatest stars of star-studded KSFO (560 AM). His next stop led him to
progressive rock powerhouse KSAN (94.9 FM; “The Jive 95”) during its apex under the
direction of Tom Donahue (BARHOF Class of 2006). Terry later morninged at K-101 and
KSFO/KYA-FM. Beyond radio, Terry is a successful actor who appeared in countless motion
pictures (including “American Graffiti” and “Mrs. Doubtfire”) and numerous television shows.
® DOUG PLEDGER — There was a time in Bay Area radio during which it was nearly
impossible to miss hearing Doug Pledger on the air – as morning man on KSMO and KKHI
(both at 1550 AM), KWUN (1480 AM) or KNBC/KNBR (680 AM), host of specialty
programs (“Pledger Plays The Classics,” “Pledger Plays Polkas”) and advertising pitchman. A
University of Wisconsin graduate with a degree in law, Pledger made his name originally as a
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sportscaster before settling in as one of San Francisco’s most popular announcers. Later owned
San Mateo’s KOFY (1050 AM). He passed away in April 2008 at the age of 89.
® DAVE SHOLIN — Another of San Francisco State University’s endless stream of talented
broadcasters, Dave Sholin – “The Duke” – got his start at San Jose’s KLIV (1590 AM) and
KARA (105.7 FM). Having quickly built a reputation for having a “golden ear,” he was hired
by the legendary KFRC (610 AM) as music director; he cemented his reputation by being
named Music Director of the Year by the Gavin Report as KFRC pulled off an unprecedented
string of seven consecutive Billboard Major Market Top 40 Station of the Year awards. Later
named national music director for KFRC’s parent company, RKO General, he took the job
one step beyond by creating a series of RKO Radio Network specials featuring stars such as
Paul McCartney, Rod Stewart and Stevie Wonder, as well as a historic interview with John
Lennon and Yoko Ono conducted only hours before Lennon’s murder. Dave Sholin is
currently the morning host at Classic Hits KFRC (106.9 FM).
® ROY STOREY — Another member of the Class of 2008’s stellar group of sportscasters, Roy
Storey excelled in all fields but was unparalleled when it came to describing ice hockey on the
air. His long career included stints behind the microphone for major league baseball recreations
on KYA and for one of the earliest sports-talk programs in the mid-1950s on Oakland’s KLX.
Roy was also the color and play-by-play voice of the San Francisco 49ers (alongside fellow
inductee Bob Fouts), the Western Hockey League Seals (alongside fellow inductee Don Klein)
and the NHL Oakland Seals. He was the radio announcer for hockey matches at the 1960
Winter Olympics at Squaw Valley, and was the voice of St. Mary’s College basketball for many
years. In addition, he was a news anchor at 1260/KYA in the 1970s.
® RUSS “THE MOOSE” SYRACUSE — One of KYA’s famed New York imports in the
early 1960s (along with Gene Nelson, Tommy Saunders, Peter Tripp, Johnny Holliday and
Larry Brownell), Russ The Moose served as captain of the “All-Night Flight” on “Super Freak
1260,” dive-bombing bad records – and some commercials that didn’t appeal to him – while
serving up tasty laminated yak fat sandwiches to his insomniac passengers. His local career also
took him to KFRC (on two occasions), KSFO (three times), KNBR (once) and back to KYA
(for a total of four stints). A legend among his fellow broadcasters, Russ The Moose passed
away in 2000 at the age of 70.

The Bay Area Radio Hall of Fame’s Class of 2008 will be celebrated during a gala ceremony and
luncheon on Wednesday, October 1, at the Doubletree Inn on the Berkeley Marina. The
ceremony, presented jointly by the Bay Area Radio Museum and the local chapter of Broadcast
Legends, will be open to the public. For reservations, please visit www.BroadcastLegends.com.

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3 comments:

Displayer said...

Why is Renel on the list? She's the worst I've heard for the longest time... (or maybe that's why she's being let in). The HOF means less now.

Don said...

I second "displayer's" comment. Renel has an annoying voice and has been foisted on us entirely too long as the Giants public address announcer. It was time for a change as soon as she started.

Don said...

I agree. Renel has no business on this list. The Giants should have replaced her long ago.