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Georgia Radio Hall of Fame: 2014

This guide documents the inductees and award winners of the Georgia Radio Hall of Fame.

Legacy Inductees

Scotty Andrews

Scotty Andrews was raised in Douglas, GA. After graduating from George Washington Carver High in 1960, he served in the United States Navy and worked in Armed Forces Radio. Upon his discharge from the service, Scotty took on commercial radio in 1966 as an on-air announcer at WHIH in Norfolk, VA where he also served as Program Director. Returning to Georgia in 1970, he joined WIGO in Atlanta as an announcer. In 1971, he was promoted to program director. He moved to WVEE-FM as an on-air personality and was appointed Program Manager in 1978. Andrews passed away in 1986.

Frank Gaither

Frank Gaither was born in Montgomery and attended Oglethorpe University. He worked part-time at the school’s WJTL. Gaither left Oglethorpe for WTOC in Savannah. A chance to join WGST took him to Atlanta. At WGST he began as an announcer, hosting “Frankie & Johnny,” a man on the street program. He served as program director and became general manager. In 1946, he was hired as sales manager at WSB and in 1951 became station manager, then general manager in 1958. In 1969 he was promoted to executive vice president of the Cox Broadcasting Division. Gaither passed away in 1990.

William Hoopes

William Hoopes was born in Chattanooga and attended public schools in Chattanooga and Cincinnati. He was a Boy Scout, a golden gloves boxer, sold newspapers, and worked at a pharmacy on weekends. He was a Marine medic, wounded at Iwo Jima and received the Purple Heart. After the war, Hoopes attended several colleges and studied art, speech and voice, and photography. In 1961, he purchased WSFB in Quitman. He hosted the morning show on the station and was known as the voice of Quitman. In 2008, he sold WSFB and pursued many hobbies. He died in 2012. 

Bob Joseph
Bob Joseph was born in Miami. During high school, he began working at WKAT. Bob served in the Army until 1954. While in Kentucky, he worked part-time at WHOP in Hopkinsville. After the service he returned to Miami’s WKAT for a while, then, went back to Kentucky to work for WHOP. The owner of WHOP promoted Joseph to the manager of several stations. In 1964, Bob and his wife Jackie bought WDMF in Buford. They changed the call letters to WDYX. They built WGCO in Midway and WIAF in Clarkesville. The stations were sold in 2003. Bob passed away in 2005.

Tom Maxwell

Tom Maxwell was born in Atlanta, attended Georgia Tech and in 1930 he began working as an announcer at WGST. In 1948 along with four other investors, Maxwell built WIBB in Macon. The station signed on to play the hits of the 50s but the format didn’t catch on. He changed the format to featuring hot new music called rock and roll. He hired GRHOF inductees Hamp “King Bee” Swain, Ray “Satellite Papa” Brown, and Charles “Big Saul” Green. WIBB became Macon’s hottest station. In 1955, James Brown recorded a demo tape in the studios at WIBB. Maxwell passed away in 1998.

Mather Payne

Mather Payne was born in Floyd County. He graduated from Rome High School with honors in 1933. He began his career at WRGA in 1935 as a bookkeeper-announcer and was named station manager in 1946. From 1942 to 1945 he served with the Army Signal Corps He returned to Rome and WRGA and worked tirelessly in the community. He was named "Young Man of the Year" by the Rome Exchange Club. In 1966 Mather Payne was awarded the Di Gamma Kappa Pioneer Broadcaster of the year honor from the University of Georgia. Mr. Payne retired in 1977 and died in 1979.

Bob Plymale
Bob Plymale was born in Quitman and landed his first job at WTIF in Tifton, After a year he accepted a job at a station in Valdosta and attended Valdosta State. He changed his on-air name to Dickie Shannon. In 1974 he applied for and got a job at WBBQ in Augusta. In 1999 he left WBBQ for WGOR where he remained for five years as program director and air talent. Shannon lent his popularity to many charitable organizations and causes in the CSRA (Central Savannah River Area). After a brief illness, he died in 2007.

Warren Roberts

Warren Roberts was born in Red Oak. While in high school he worked for a dairy supply company and began his radio career as an actor on WATL. He served in the Army from 1942 until 1946, then, went to work at WEAS in Decatur. He started as an announcer and eventually became manager. In 1948, Roberts and Statesman Quartet founder Hovie Lister began what may have been the first daily Southern Gospel program. The program was on the air at different Atlanta metro stations for 46 years. Roberts retired in 1993 and died in 2011.

Dorothy Ruth Thurman
Dorothy Ruth Thurman was born in Midville. She attended the University of Georgia and Corcoran College of Art and Design in Washington, D.C. She modeled for art students then moved to New York changing her name to “Tedi.” In the late '50s, Tedi appeared on NBC TV’s “Today.” She was hired for NBC radio’s "Monitor," giving weather forecasts in an alluring voice with lush music playing in the background. After radio, she moved to Los Angeles to pursue acting. She appeared in Ed Wood's cult classic “Jail Bait.” She died in 2012.
Bradley "Slim" Williamson

Bradley “Slim” Williamson was born in Jackson County Georgia. He taught himself to play guitar and fronted the “Georgia Peach Boys.” The band was playing in Winder on WIMO. The station owner asked Slim to read a sponsor’s commercial. That began his radio career. Soon he bought a radio station, and finally owned a chain of stations. Along the way, he began producing records and formed Chart Records. Williamson moved to Nashville and had a successful career as a publisher and producer. He and his wife moved back to Georgia when he retired. Slim passed away on Christmas Day in 2013.

Career Achievement Inductees

Willard Arbour Willard Arbour

Willard Arbour grew up in Atlanta and built a carrier current radio station while attending St Pius X High. He got his first taste of broadcast radio as a member of the Junior Achievement Radio Company program staff on WSB FM in 1971. Arbour sold ads, wrote copy, and voiced commercials. While attending Georgia State he was a student manager at WRAS. From there he got his first job at WYZE in Atlanta. He joined WKLS FM and stayed for 21 years before joining Atlanta’s WZGC. He stayed for four years and retired in 2008.

Craig Ashwood Craig Ashwood

Craig Ashwood was born February 1, 1958 in Melbourne, Australia. He grew up in Australia, Singapore, and Japan. Craig's radio career began after leaving the University of Minnesota in 1979, hosting a morning drive on KRSI Minneapolis. Craig moved to 94Q Atlanta in 1980, where he spent the next ten years doing middays, TV, and community/charity work. Between 1990 and 1998, Craig programmed stations in Miami, San Francisco, and Washington D.C. He voiced all Outback Steakhouse national radio ads for 19 years beginning in 1988. Prior to retiring in 2012, Craig was Senior Director, Site Services, Cox Media Group.

Ryan Cameron Ryan Cameron

As a child, Ryan Cameron heard his voice on a radio special about kids, who like himself, had speech impediments. That inspired him to pursue a radio career. After graduating from Campbell High in Smyrna and attending West Georgia College, he became an intern at V-103, and soon he was doing nights. Ryan was hired for mornings at the new WHTA in Atlanta after a brief time at WKYS in Washington. In 2005 he went back to V-103 for afternoons, then in 2013 moved to mornings. Cameron is the arena voice of the Atlanta Hawks.

Mitch Gray Mitch Gray

Mitch Gray was born in Cedartown, GA, on August 24, 1957, and is a lifelong resident of Tallapoosa. He began his radio career in Bremen in 1977 doing middays on WWCC. Gray joined the staff of WPPI in Carrollton in 1979 and has been on the air in the community for over 35 consecutive years. A winner of both AP and UPI honors in sports categories, he has served since 1982 as the play-by-play voice for University of West Georgia teams. For the past 18 years, Gray has also hosted the morning show on WBTR-FM in Carrollton.

Al Haynes Al Haynes

Al Haynes was born in Fort Benning, Georgia, and graduated from Columbus High School with the dream of becoming a broadcaster. His radio career began in 1974 at WXLE in Phenix City, AL. He also worked at WCLS and WCGQ in Columbus. In 1975, Haynes went to WSM in Nashville. He left the Music City for WOOK in Washington, DC, then, moved to WLPL in Baltimore. In 1982 he returned to Columbus to work for WFXE. Next was a stay at WCGQ, then to his current home WRLD/Boomer 95 where he is the Public Affairs Director and morning show host.

Rick Mack Rick Mack

Rick Mack was born and grew up in Washington, D.C. He attended the University of Maryland earning a degree in Radio, Television, and Film. His radio career began in Athens, Ohio as a radio account executive. He came to Atlanta as VP/GM of WVEE/WAOK. He went to WBIG in Washington, WWDC, then, back to Atlanta as VP/GM of Fox 97. In 2002 he became Director of Sales at WKHX/WYAY. In 2008 Mack joined Lincoln Financial Media as VP/GM of Star 94; he is now Senior VP.  Rick was named one of Radio Ink’s Greatest Managers in 2012 and 2013.

John Wetherbee John Wetherbee

John Wetherbee was born in Columbus, Ohio. He began his radio career in high school at WBBY FM and while attending the college of Wooster was GM of its station. After college while working at WKRC in Cincinnati, Wetherbee was hired as a jock then PD at WFYR in Chicago, moved to Atlanta to be operations Manager at WALR, then went to WFOX FM. He got a meteorology degree and returned to Atlanta radio at WLCL FM. John went to Savannah as Operations Manager for Clear Channel but now does the weather for television and 67 radio stations in the US.

Scott Woodside Scott Woodside

Scott Woodside was born in Jacksonville. He began his radio career at age 16 at WHYD in Columbus, learning from Georgia Radio Hall of Fame inductees, Jimmy Deer (’08 Legacy) and Bill Bowick (’08 Career Achievement). He moved to WCHK in Canton then entered the Navy where he served as a broadcast journalist. After his tour of duty, he came to Atlanta’s WQXI in 1972 as a newsman. In 1976 he joined 2008 Legacy Inductee Barry Chase at Z93 as sidekick and newsman. In 1976 he went to WPGC in Washington as morning newsman for Jim Elliott. They moved to WRQX and then to WZGC Atlanta. He was an Atlanta traffic reporter until retiring in 1997.

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