Media notes: St. Louis Media History Foundation inducts 21 new honorees

The St. Louis Media History Foundation has inducted 21 new honorees.

They are:

  • Russ Carter started out as a singer with the Ted Weems Orchestra but is best known in St. Louis as the host of the “St. Louis Hop,” a local, weekly “American Bandstand” program on KSD-TV, the St. Louis area’s first racially integrated television program.
  • Robert Coe began operating an amateur radio station at age 15 and co-founded KSD in 1921 at the age of 19. At 22, he was assistant manager and chief engineer. During World War II, Coe built the military communications network for the Asia-Pacific theatre and returned to help establish KSD-TV before moving on to the national ABC network television in New York.
  • Chris Condon joined KSD-TV in 1961 to anchor the station’s 10-minute news broadcast and stayed for 23 years as an anchor and reporter.
  • Sally Bixby Defty joined the St. Louis Post-Dispatch staff in 1965 with no newspaper experience, spent three years in the “Women’s” section before becoming a general assignment reporter and the first permanent female member of the city desk staff. She was a Pulitzer Prize finalist for a series on landlords and arson.
  • Cathy Dunkin, founder and chief executive officer of Standing Partnership, has been in public relations for more than 30 years. The St. Louis Business Journal recognized Dunkin as one of the “Most Influential Business Women in St. Louis.” She has held management positions in St. Louis, Chicago and Dallas with multinational public relations firms and Fortune 500 companies.
  • Native St. Louisan Eugene Field, best known for his children’s poetry, was a reporter for the St. Joseph (Mo.) Gazette in 1873, where he worked his way up to city editor. He went on to work for the St. Louis Journal, the Kansas City Times and the Denver Tribune. In 1883, he accepted an offer to write a humor column for the Chicago Daily News. He stayed until his death at 45 in 1895.
  • Jim Fox spent 65 years in print journalism. After retiring from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Fox wrote a column for the Suburban Journals that continued even after a stroke kept him from typing. He then dictated his columns to his wife and daughter. Fox began his career at the St. Louis Star-Times.
  • Andre “Spyderman” Fuller rose from an intern reading morning news at radio station WESL, where he became program director in the 1980s. Fuller was the first disc jockey in the market to play the founding fathers of hip-hop. Later, he joined the new black-owned station Z-100 FM as program director.
  • In 1940, St. Louis Post-Dispatch staff artist Ralph Graczak originated “St. Louis Oddities,” later known as “Our Own Oddities.” Graczak’s also drew caricatures of celebrities, often featured in the Post-Dispatch’s “Everyday” section.
  • In 1953, local radio newsman Bruce Hayward was named director of news and special events at WTVI, the market’s first UHF-TV operation and the second television station in St. Louis. As the news anchor on all of the station’s newscasts, Hayward also went door-to-door helping viewers install and adjust their ultra-high-frequency antennas. When the station switched dial positions, Hayward remained with the newly named KTVI (Channel 2) as news announcer and public affairs director.
  • Don Hesse was the Globe-Democrat’s editorial cartoonist from 1951 to 1984. The Freedoms Foundation, the American Legion and the National Headliners Club honored Hesse, whose work was nationally syndicated by the Los Angeles Times and the McNaught syndicates.
  • During his 20-year Anheuser Busch, Inc. Bob Lachky oversaw development of several famous beer ad campaigns and helped the company build a 50 percent share of the U.S. beer market. He was named the 1994 Adweek “Top Marketer of the Year,” 2001 Brandweek “Marketer of the Year,” and 2009 Advertising Club of New York “Advertising Person of the Year.” He currently is president of RCL Group.
  • Jeremy Lansman brought listener-sponsored community radio to St. Louis in the form of KDNA-FM. As a teenager, he built a radio station in Hawaii, then joined Lorenzo Milam to found listener-sponsored KRAB in Seattle in 1962. With Milam’s backing, Lansman built and ran KDNA, which played an eclectic blend of music, aired live political rallies, government hearings and board of alderman meetings, news and phone-talk shows. Lansmsn and Milam sold the station in 1973 to pay off its debts and used the proceeds to fund community radio stations across the country, including KDHX in St. Louis. Lansman now owns KYES television in Anchorage, Alaska, and does engineering analysis for radio stations around the world.
  • Erma Perham Proetz, executive vice president at Gardner Advertising in St. Louis, was the first woman elected to the National Advertising Hall of Fame in 1952, eight years after her death. Perham Proetz was the first person to win the Harvard Advertising Award three times. In 1935, Fortune magazine named her one of the nation’s top 16 outstanding business women. She was elected president of the Women’s Advertising Club of St. Louis in 1936.
  • Pete Rahn created one of the first newspaper television guides. Rahn spent 49 years at the St. Louis Globe-Democrat, moving from junior financial copy editor to editor of one of the television guides. Over several decades he wrote more than 7,000 columns, interviewing scores of celebrities.
  • Clif St. James worked at KSD-TV and KSD-AM from 1956 to 1988. He was a radio and television host best known as a weatherman and as “Corky the Clown.” As “Corky,” St. James played host to what may have been the first local children’s show to be broadcast in color with a live studio audience. It ran from 1954 to 1980.
  • Wilma Sim took over “Homemaking with KSD-TV” through most of the 1950s. She appeared on the first local color television broadcast and was active in American Women in Radio and Television. She moved on to become a columnist for Farm Journal Magazine and was recognized as one of the Top 10 Women in Advertising in America in 1972.
  • Robert G. Stolz founded Stolz Advertising Co., which became the third-largest advertising agency in St. Louis. Before he started the agency, he served 20 years as advertising director of Brown Shoe Co. At Brown Shoe, he helped to produce the national children’s television show “Smilin’ Ed’s Gang,” which was sponsored by the Brown Shoe Co.’s Buster Brown brand. Stolz became president of the Ad Club of St. Louis at age 29.
  • Glenn Tintera originated advertising’s use of “focus groups.” Tintera started as a research analyst in 1966 at D’Arcy Advertising Agency, and retired as executive vice president and manager of its St. Louis operation. He was named Ad Man of the Year in 1991 by the American Advertising Federation.
  • Richard Weil retired from the Post-Dispatch in 2004 as its editor for investigative projects after serving as an assistant managing editor, managing editor and executive editor. Weil co-founded the St. Louis Beacon with Margaret Wolf Freivogel and Robert W. Duffy and served as its chairman. He joined the Post-Dispatch in 1973 after 11 years at the Berkshire Eagle in Pittsfield, Mass.
  • Clyde Skeets Yaney was an early live radio entertainer who became a disc jockey. Yaney, the “Golden Voice Yodeler,” began performing on KMOX Radio in the 1930s. He soon achieved star billing as part of the “National Champion Hillbillies,” a group featured on KMOX and the CBS Network into the 1950s. With the end of live radio entertainment, Yaney reinvented himself as a disc jockey, first on WEW and then on KSTL.

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Saint Louis University communication professor Mary Gould’s fall semester undergraduate “Digital Storytelling” class gave the Sweet Potato Project’s website a makeover, a new logo and other upgrades. The Sweet Potato Project, operated by the North Area Community Development Corporation, teaches inner-city youth to grow sweet potatoes on vacant lots in North St. Louis and sell the tubers and sweet-potato cookies. Every fall semester, Gould’s class works with a nonprofit community organization to help produce multimedia material that supports the organization’s mission.

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Sinclair Broadcast Group reported net broadcast revenues of $382.3 million in the fourth quarter of 2013, a 33.2 percent increase compared to the year-ago quarter.

Operating income for the quarter was $103.3 million, a 13.3 percent drop compared to the fourth quarter of 2012. The decline was caused by the absence of political revenue in the non-election year, as well as one-time acquisition costs and a loss on the sale of WSYT in Syracuse. Local net broadcast revenues were up 58.1 percent and national net broadcast revenues were down 14.2 percent because of the drop in political advertising.

“2013 was a historic year for us, including growing broadcast revenues 32.3 percent to a record-breaking $1.2 billion, and once again leading the industry on station acquisitions,” Sinclair president and chief executive officer David Smith said in a statement. “During the year we closed on the purchase of 63 television stations and added more than $1 billion in assets, which contributed $148.4 million in revenues in 2013.”

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The Alestle staff at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville recently won eight awards during the annual college media conference of the Illinois College Press Association.

At the conference, which took place in Chicago Feb. 21-22, the Alestle won second place for general excellence, a category in which the staff had not placed since 2009.

“It was exciting to see the Alestle recognized in all the categories in which they were, but especially in the in-depth reporting and general excellence categories,” Alestle program director Tammy Merrett-Murry said. “It’s a testament to the seriousness in which the staff approaches its work.”

Lifestyles editor Karen Martin and online editor Ben Ostermeier shared a second-place award for in-depth reporting for their series on campus wildlife, published last summer. Copy editor John Layton won a second-place award for headline writing.

Former sports editor Roger Starkey won second place for sports news story for his reporting on former wrestling head coach David Ray’s resignation. Former editor-in-chief Michelle Beard won second place for an editorial cartoon she designed on the board of trustees members’ ongoing disagreements last year.

The Alestle’s recent lifestyles series, “Metro East Eats,” won a third-place award in the entertainment supplement category.

Layton and former photographer Andrew Rathnow both received honorable mentions at ICPA for news story and sports photo, respectively.

The entries in the competition were judged for excellence by members of the Illinois Press Association, as well as other working journalists in Missouri and across the country.

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David Nicklaus of St. Louis Post-Dispatch won the top award for commentary by a newspaper columnist for newspapers with an average weekday circulation of between 100,000 and 200,000 from the Society of American Business Editors and Writers.

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St. Louis-based FleishmanHillard was a big winner at the 2014 PRWeek Awards. It won “Large PR Agency of the Year” honors. FleishmanHillard chief executive officer Dave Senay won “PR Professional of the Year – Agency.” And its “It Can Wait” campaign to end texting while driving won “Cause-Related Campaign of the Year.” Fleishman worked with AT&T on the campaign.

FleishmanHillard also has been named to the “Top Companies for Executive Women” list by the National Association for Female Executives for the fifth consecutive year. Results are based on factors such as succession planning, profit-and-loss roles, gender pay parity, support programs and work-life balance, and the results appear in Working Mother magazine.

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Tony Messenger and Kevin Horrigan of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch won the 2013 Walker Stone Award for Editorial Writing for deeply researched editorials that exposed political hypocrisy. Judges said their work “embodied a spirit dedicated to public welfare.” They will receive $10,000 and a trophy from the Scripps Howard Foundation at a dinner May 22 at the Duke Energy Convention Center in Cincinnati.

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Sean McLaughlin, executive news director of KMOV since July 2007, left in February to become vice president of news for the Cincinnati-based E.W. Scripps Co.’s television division.

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Kavita Kumar, retail and consumer affairs reporter for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, left the St. Louis Post-Dispatch to return to the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, where she was a reporter from 2000 to 2003. Kumar joins former Post-Dispatch business editor Todd Stone at the Minneapolis paper.

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Jacob Barker has joined the business desk of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch as its environmental reporter. Barker has been a business reporter and columnist at the Columbia Daily Tribune for three years. He previously wrote for the Columbia Business Times.

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Jennifer Blome retired from KSDK to join the Animal Protective Association as its director of humane education. Blome had been with KSDK since 1979 and anchored its morning newscast since the early 1980s.

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Native St. Louisan Alissa Reitmeier has joined KMOV as a news anchor and traffic reporter. She previously worked at WINK-TV in Fort Myers, Fla., And KFLY in Lafayette, La.

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Talia Kaplan has left KSDK to be a reporter for WKRN-TV in Nashville, Tenn. Kaplan had been with KSDK since 2011, where she had been a reporter/anchor.

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Local architectural historian and historic preservationist Michael Allen is now a contributing writer for Next City, a Philadelphia-based nonprofit organization with a mission to inspire social, economic and environmental change in cities by creating media and events around the world.

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Radio One Inc. has named Jeffrey Wilson has been named regional vice president of the Midwest radio stations overseeing all six of the Midwest markets: Columbus, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Detroit, Indianapolis and St. Louis. Radio One is a diversified media company that primarily targets African-American and urban consumers. The company owns and operates 54 broadcast stations located in 16 urban markets in the United States. Wilson previously managed Radio One’s operations in Columbus, Ohio, and Cleveland.

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Don Sharp is the new president of Coolfire Solutions. Sharp came to Coolfire from miSEAT in Chicago, where he was interim chief operating officer after spending more than five years at Navistar.

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Robert Cohn, editor-in-chief emeritus of the St. Louis Jewish Light, has been re-appointed to the St. Louis County Human Rights Commission.

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Geile/Leon Marketing Communications has hired Randy Micheletti as vice president, director of account service. As a veteran of several St. Louis marketing agencies, Micheletti has more than two decades of experience as a strategic marketing professional, including working for Geile/Leon from 1999 to 2004.