Women’s History Month: Women of Radio
Congress declared March as National Women’s History Month in 1987 to reflect on the contributions of women to United States history.
In honor of Women’s History Month, we wanted to discuss some of the important women in radio history.
The first female-hosted radio show was in 1931 with Kate Smith. She later presented the popular radio variety hour, “The Kate Smith Hour” from 1937 to 1945. At the same time, she has the #1 daytime show “Kate Smith Speaks.” She was also long known as the “first lady of radio.”
After an exciting career with popular radio and tv shows, she was awarded the U.S. Medal of Freedom in 1982. She was also inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame in 1999.
Pegeen Fitzgerald is known as the “First Lady of Radio Chatter.” Pegeen and her husband, Edward, had a popular “husband-and-wife at home” radio show. They broadcasted this show for over 40 years, and it later became a Big Apple institution.
The New York Times reported that she had “pioneered the at-home radio format.”
Susan Stamberg was the first woman to ever anchor a national nightly news program and has won every major award in broadcasting. She was the host of NPR’s All Things Considered from 1972 to 1986. She is well known for her knack for finding an interesting story. Some of her notable interviews include Laura Bush, Rosa Parks, and James Baldwin.
Susan was inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame in 1996 and awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2020.