Christian radio leader beats Howard Stern

FROM WND

Dobson among 2008 National Hall of Fame inductees

Christian psychologist James Dobson, who has been telling parents how to apply biblical principles to lead their families, raise their children and affect society for more than 30 years, is being honored by the National Radio Hall of Fame.

Dobson’s “Focus on the Family” radio broadcast, which is heard on more than 4,000 radio stations worldwide, is among the members of the 2008 class of inductees, officials have announced.

“I’ve made a living putting thoughts into words throughout my adult life, but it is difficult to express how I feel about this honor,” Dobson said today at a staff assembly. “I am especially pleased because the wonderful people at Focus on the Family deserve it. Our radio program has not been a solo effort. It has been a symphony performed by more than 10,000 people over the past 32 years. I am indebted to them all.”

“To have ‘Focus on the Family’ honored in this manner means we’ve made a difference in families all over the world,” said Jim Daly, the president of the organization. “That Dr. Dobson’s listeners recognized the excellence and relevance of the content of the daily broadcast and voted to give him a much-deserved win shows Dr. Dobson’s influence is as strong as ever in the hearts of his fans, as well as in the culture.”

The Hall of Fame’s 2008 steering committee had nominated Dobson in the “national active” category, alongside Bob Costas, Dr. Laura Schlessinger and the notorious Howard Stern, officials said. To qualify, a broadcaster must have contributed to the radio industry on a national level for at least 10 years.

Dobson’s program then was chosen in the Hall’s first-ever online voting competition.

As host of the daily broadcast, Dobson is being added to a field of radio luminaries such as Orson Wells, Paul Harvey, Gene Autry, Bing Crosby, Kate Smith, Jack Benny, Walter Winchell, Dick Clark and Rush Limbaugh, while the “Focus on the Family” program is recognized along with hit shows as “The Shadow” and “Your Hit Parade.”

Dobson started his program in 1977 and today it is heard on more than 3,000 radio stations across North America plus hundreds more in nearly 160 other nations where his broadcasts are heard in 27 languages.

The Hall of Fame said others in the Class of 2008 are Art Bell, whose program “Coast to Coast AM” was syndicated on more than 500 stations; the late Jess Cain, the long-time morning host on WHDH/Boston who died in February; Howie Carr, who also is an award-winning columnist for the “Boston Herald;” the late Bob Collins, a popular talk show host in Chicago until his death in 2000; Michael Luckoff, president and general manager of KGO-AM in San Francisco; Charlie Tuna, a veteran of 40 years on the air in Oklahoma, Kansas, Boston and Los Angeles; and the late Dick Whittinghill, a southern California personality who once sang with Tommy Dorsey and his big band.

Ceremonies to honor the individuals and programs will be Nov. 8.

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