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Arizona Broadcasters Association induct Tucson broadcasting legend in to Hall of Fame

The Arizona Broadcasters Association held their 26th annual Broadcasters Hall of Fame luncheon in Scottsdale on Oct. 15.

Each year, the luncheon honors the lifetime achievements of three to four inductees and their contributions in radio, television, or Internet broadcasting, according to Art Brooks, the Arizona Broadcasters Association’s president and CEO.

“All of the inductees are nominated by friends, family, coworkers [and] other broadcasters,” Brooks said.

The most nominated broadcasters are honored at the luncheon, which is attended by broadcasters of all kinds from around the state.

The Hall of Fame has spread the love and recognition of talk show broadcasting since its inception.

“It’s definitely had a positive impact both in the community and in the studio,” Brooks said.

One of the inductees was Tucson’s very own Bill Buckmaster, a five-time Emmy Award nominee and former broadcast editor for the Associated Press who has served as news director at various stations throughout the Southwest. Buckmaster, along with his company Bill Buckmaster Communications LLC, produces his show “Buckmaster,” a daily news talk program on Tucson’s KVOI “The Voice.”

“Not only did he serve the industry for many years, but he also contributed to the community through all of his great work,” Brooks said about Buckmaster.

Dylan Smith, editor and publisher of TucsonSentinel.com, took over hosting duties on the Buckmaster show the day after Buckmaster’s induction.

“Congratulations to Bill Buckmaster for his much-deserved induction into the Arizona Broadcaster’s Hall of Fame,” Smith said on the cast.

The other inductees include Maurie Helle, Barry Young and Tom Dillon.

Brooks said that Dillon, a sports broadcaster who was honored posthumously, was nominated for his contributions and long list of achievements.

Dillon’s love of sports grew from his love of play-by-play and its “direct link to the team for the thousands of fans that were unable to attend the game, while explaining what is going on to the fans who are watching the game,” Dillon told the ABA, before his death in 2008.

According to Brooks, posthumous inductions like Dillon’s are infrequent.

“We don’t do it every year, but we do it when it’s warranted,” Brooks said.

Helle has been in the business since 1959, and quickly went on to become a chief broadcast director in Ohio. He moved to Arizona in 1962, where he became KSAZ-TV’s chief director and production manager.

Young, the last inductee, has had a career spanning 45 years, throughout which he has worked as a top-rated talk radio host in Atlanta, Miami and Phoenix. He relinquished on-air duties at iHeart Media’s KFYI when he retired in 2014.

Brooks said that when ABA’s Hall of Fame started in 1989, there was nothing like it at the time.

“We felt it was long overdue that Arizona’s best broadcasters, in television, radio, whatever, be recognized and rewarded for their work,” Brooks said.


Follow Andy Alvarado on Twitter.


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