John Kiesewetter reports:
Mike Martini glows like an old tube radio when he talks about his 2013 project: Reviving the Greater Cincinnati Broadcast Hall of Fame.
“It’s been 20 years! It’s time to do it,” says Martini, Media Heritage archives president and WMKV-FM (89.3) producer/host.
Ruth Lyons, Bob Braun, Red Barber, Powel Crosley Jr., Ernie Waits and “Uncle Al” and Wanda Lewis were among the 37 people inducted in 1990-93.
But you’d never know it. No plaques hang anywhere. And nobody has been added since the Cincinnati Historical Society abandoned the Hall of Fame ceremony 20 years ago.
Martini needs $10,000 to resume the program and preserve the past. He wants to make modest 8-by-10 plaques to be displayed in the Voice of America Museum of Broadcasting on Tylersville Road, West Chester Township.
By the end of the year, he wants to induct a new class of Cincinnati’s best broadcasters from the recent and distant past. Perhaps Gary Burbank, Jerry Thomas, Bonnie Lou, Peter Grant, Robin Wood, Rich King, Don Herman, Bob Trumpy or Joe Nuxhall?
His event won’t be as elaborate as the Historical Society’s 1990 black-tie gala or the 1992 ceremony with “Howdy Doody” star Buffalo Bob Smith or the 1993 concert by Braun, Marian Spelman, Ruby Wright, Bonnie Lou, Colleen Sharp, Mary Ellen Tanner, Nancy James and the Cliff Lash Trio.
“I understand they lost lots of money, which is why they didn’t do it in 1994,” Martini says.
Those interested in making a tax-deductible donation to the non-profit organization, or volunteering, should write Martini at Media Heritage Hall of Fame Fund, Voice of America Museum, 8070 Tylersville Road, West Chester Township, 45069. See more about Media Heritage at www.historyofbroadcasting.com. For a list of the 37 Greater Cincinnati Broadcast Hall of Fame members, go to my blog at www.cincinnati.com/blogs/tv. See the gallery by searching keyword: FAME.
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