Once known as “The Dean” of Talk Radio, Jerry Williams is one of the originators of the talk radio format.
Audiences throughout the United States have been listening to his views for over 50 years. Not a man to pull his punches, Williams has a legion of fans—and detractors.
Williams began his radio career in 1946 at WCYB/Bristol, Tennessee, near the Virginia/Tennessee border. He then moved to WIBG/ Philadelphia, WMEX/Boston and WBBM/Chicago. The turmoil of the 1960’s fueled his acerbic style, and his listeners loved a good fight.
In 1968, the outspoken Williams returned to Boston and began an eight-year stint with powerhouse WBZ, which spread Williams’ views to 38 states and much of Canada. He would frequently tangle with the Kennedy family on their home turf.
In 1976, Williams joined WMCA/New York, and the following year he moved to WWDB/Philadelphia, where he became the first FM talk host.
In 1981, he once again moved back to WRKO/Boston and began to dominate afternoon ratings for many years. He once tried to mobilize the talk industry when he founded the now-defunct National Association of Radio Talk Show Hosts.
Jerry Williams died on April 29, 2003.
He was inducted into the Radio Hall of Fame in 1996.