Broadcast Pioneers member Joseph F. Frazer started in Delaware Valley telecasting in the early days of the medium. In 1949, he went to work for WDEL-TV, Channel 7 in Wilmington, Delaware where he produced Big Five college basketball games. Two years later, the Federal Communications Commission reassigned the station to the Channel 12 dial position.
In the mid-fifties, Steinman Broadcasting sold the TV station to Paul F. Harron who changed the call letters to WPFH. Frazer stayed with the new owner for awhile before going as Sales Manager to WRCV Radio (It was KYW Radio until 1956 and began using the call letters again in 1965), owned by NBC.
In 1962, the network transferred him to their New York City radio station, WNBC. There, as General Sales Manager, he introduced their first sports talk show. The station is now WFAN.
When Tommy Roberts purchased the old WKDN-AM station, he changed to call to WTMR and brought in some middle of the road disc jockeys and some seasoned news veterans. He also brought Joseph Frazer back to the Delaware Valley as the stationís General Manager. He later moved to WFPG in Atlantic City.
In 1973, Frazer left broadcasting to become the Marketing Director for SEPTA. It was he who developed the TransPass. For a set fee, you could ride SEPTA vehicles anytime for no additional charge. He stayed a dozen years with the organization and then retired.
Frazer is a native of the area, a child of the Greater Northeast. He played football for Northeast High and was center of LaSalleís football team in 1941, the last year before the university discontinued the sport.
He earned his bachelorís degree from LaSalle College in 1943 and became active in their alumni association. He helped organize the schoolís annual giving program. In 1997, he was one of the participants at a ceremony reinstating football at LaSalle University.
During the Second World War, he served stateside with the Army Air Corps. After his discharge, he taught English in high school before joining the broadcast industry.
His wife, Helen Fick Frazer died in 1984. They were married for 40 years. The couple had three children. On Saturday, August 21, 2004, Joseph Frazer passed away. He was 83.
From the official archives of the Broadcast Pioneers of Philadelphia
Text written by Broadcast Pioneers member Gerry Wilkinson
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