Friday, June 1, 2012

Happy Anniversary 'Vote For Bob Crane!' - The Year in Review

By Carol Ford

Bob Crane, circa 1966.
One year ago today, we launched the campaign for Bob Crane's induction into the National Radio Hall of Fame. It was not a decision I had arrived at lightly. In fact, I had not even considered a campaign at all when, on February 1, 2011, I submitted my formal nomination of Bob Crane to the National Radio Hall of Fame Steering Committee at the Museum of Broadcast Communications in Chicago on behalf of Bob's radio colleagues and close friends. However, with public voting being a part of the selection process for the National Radio Hall of Fame, public awareness became a necessity. For Bob Crane to have a fair public vote in the selection process, people needed to know that he was more than just Colonel Hogan of Hogan's Heroes or a murder victim. They needed to know that there was much more to him than what they saw in the media following his death. Indeed, Bob was a very deep and complicated human being, who - while not perfect - genuinely cared for others, was "sensitive and somewhat shy," had what many called a "sunny personality" and could brighten any room just by walking into it, is still adored by his family and friends, and possessed rare talents in music, radio, and acting - talents that must no longer be ignored.

I say without hesitation and with deepest appreciation that this campaign exists because of the efforts of some truly dynamic people - my own friends and coworkers - who practically gave birth to this campaign overnight.

The very first thing we did was launch a blog. Joe Tonzelli created the blog and the brand Vote For Bob Crane. On the evening of June 1, 2011, I received an email from Joe saying, "You are live." In the email was a link to the Vote For Bob Crane blog and the post below. Suffice it to say, we've come a long way! With the help of our Facebook and Twitter accounts, which had been set up by Katie Brownlow, we have had nearly 10,000 visits to the Vote For Bob Crane blog from all over the world.

On June 30, 2011, the National Radio Hall of Fame Steering Committee announced that they had decided to forego public voting for 2011. Instead, they hand-selected a few key individuals from the Golden Age of Radio who they believed had been overlooked by the public but who they felt should be included in the Hall of Fame. This list included Former President Ronald Reagan, who was honored with induction into the 2011 Class. However, the Steering Committee assured me that Bob Crane's official nomination would be retained on file for consideration in future classes. Therefore, we made the decision to forge ahead, our sights now set on 2012.

In January 2012, Bob Crane and his nomination for the National Radio Hall of Fame made headlines twice: once via a press release distributed via PR Newswire (with the help of Janet D'Alesandro), and again in a feature article written by journalist John Burgeson and published in The Connecticut Post. Earlier this year, we also launched our official Web site,, designed and created by Katie Gallagher. We also developed a YouTube Channel.

The support we have received has been tremendous. WICC 600-AM Radio in Bridgeport, Connecticut, was the first to endorse Bob's nomination, followed by the Connecticut Broadcasting History organization. Many prominent individuals in radio and broadcasting also added their support, including a great many members of the Columbia Square Broadcasting Alumni Group. Bob's dearest friends as well as his fans have shown strong support. Most important has been the ongoing support of Bob's family, specifically his now-grown children, who love and miss their father terribly and all of whom Bob loved and adored. It is for them most of all that makes everything we have done and continue to do worthwhile.

Bob Crane with first wife Anne and
children Robert David, Debbie, and Karen.
Bob Crane with second wife Patricia (Patty)
and son, Robert Scott.
Within the next couple of weeks, the official ballot of potential 2012 candidates will be announced by the National Radio Hall of Fame Steering Committee. It is our sincerest hope that the name Bob Crane will be included, and that this year, he will be recognized for his extensive and groundbreaking work in radio and the entertainment industry. 

Bob Crane in his KNX booth - circa 1964.

Bob Crane has been called a genius in the broadcasting field by those who worked directly with him. He is an unsung broadcasting pioneer who helped shape the world of radio, and he is most deserving of the honor of being inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame.

If you have not done so already, take some time and listen to Bob's radio show, and many segments are available right here on this blog. Visit our official Web site and discover for yourself what many have overlooked or forgotten about Bob Crane. Join us on Facebook and Twitter and become a real part of this campaign - your vote truly does count!

Thank you one and all for your support!