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National Association of Broadcasters
Hal Jackson's First Time On Air (1939)

Moment 54: Hal Jackson's First Time On Air

Hal Jackson was the first African American play-by-play sportscaster and the network radio announcer. Jackson was also the first New York City personality to have daily radio shows on three separate stations. He was host of the top-rated “Sunday Classics” on WBLS-FM and the first African American to be inducted into the NAB Broadcasting Hall of Fame. In 1939, Jackson broke the color line at WINX/Washington by hosting "The Bronze Review," a nightly interview program. Before long, Hal had agreed to host called "The House That Jack Built," a program of jazz and blues on WOOK. At one point in the 1940s, Jackson was hosting four different daily programs for four different Washington-area stations.

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November 2, 2020 marks the 100th anniversary of the first commercial radio broadcast. To celebrate this special anniversary, we’re shining a spotlight on 100 key moments in radio's history.

We hope you’ll join us in celebrating your favorite radio memories throughout 2020. Use the hashtag #Radio100 across social media to share these moments with the world. Here’s to 100 wonderful years of radio, and to at least 100 more!

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