For more than 40 years Jack Rinehart worked as a senior reporter at WRTV, Indianapolis. During his four decades on-air Jack broke thousands of stories, covered hundreds of exclusives, and established himself as one of the most trusted reporters in the market. His career highlights include an Emmy Award, Associated Press awards, a CASPER Award, and he was named a “Sagamore of the Wabash” by Indiana Governor Robert Orr.
Jack was born and grew up in South Bend, Indiana. He graduated from Bradley University in 1973 with a bachelor’s degree in Speech. While still in college, Jack started working as a reporter at WRAU-TV (now known as WHOI) in Peoria, Illinois. He later became an Investigative Reporter and Weekend Anchor at WRAU before coming to WRTV on November 10, 1975.
Bill Shirk graduated from Ball State in 1967 with a degree in education and initially worked as a repairman and as an account executive for his Dad’s advertising agency. He taught a year of middle school in 1965 then talked his dad and mother into applying for the license for WERK Muncie. They received the license and Shirk’s parents wanted him to start at the bottom, so he began at WERK as the janitor. A year later, he became a weekend DJ at WERK and by 1968 not only became WERK’s station manager, but also served as sales manager, program director, production manager and remained as a DJ in the afternoons.
Throughout the next three decades, Shirk went on to own, general manage, program and serve as an air personality on ten radio stations and two TV stations in Muncie, Indianapolis, Greenwood, Greencastle, Cloverdale and Lebanon. A member of The Garden United Methodist Church, in 1983 Shirk was the executive producer and starred in “The Escapist” the first motion picture ever produced in the state of Indiana before the film commission was established in Indiana.
He is also a published author having written “Modern Day Houdini.” Bill Shirk was the number one Escape Artist in the World, in the 1970s, 1980s & 1990s, setting eight Guinness Book of World records from fastest escape from Strait Jacket 1.68 seconds to a World Record Jail Break. Through his escapes, Shirk has raised thousands of dollars for underprivileged and handicapped children and adults throughout Central Indiana. This work has been recognized with various awards including the Crossroads Business Award, Variety Club of Indianapolis Human Achievement Award, and the Indianapolis Northwest Lions Club Special Award, among others.
He now owns 12 radio stations in Hawaii and does mornings on the oldies station in Honolulu.
Howard Kellman majored in radio and television at Brooklyn College receiving his B.A. degree with Cum Laude honors in 1975. During those undergraduate years Howard was the radio and television voice of St. John’s basketball from 1973-75.
For baseball fans in Indianapolis, Kellman celebrates his 40th year as the play-by-play announcer of the Indianapolis Indians in 2015. When not in the booth with the Indians, Howard also did 25 years of play-by-play at WHMB-TV covering the High School football and basketball games of the week which he continues in 2015.
While juggling the Indians and high school on-air jobs, Howard was Sports Director at WNDE in 1981, hosted radio shows on WXLW and WNDE called “Great Baseball Memories”. These programs were a series of vignettes Kellman put together with his baseball background. He also hosted a TV show “Inside the Indians” focusing on the Tribe.
There were times when he filled-in and did play-by-play for the Chicago White Sox, New York Mets and Cleveland Cavaliers and was a sideline reporter for Yale Football in 2012 on the YES television network.
Dick Florea had a thirty-five (35) year career at WKJG-TV, Ft. Wayne, where he served from 1966 until his retirement in 2001. Prior to those years, Dick worked at WMRI radio and WTAF-TV in Marion, Indiana. While at WKJG, Dick served as News Director and Anchorman, Public Affairs and Community Relations Director, and host of the daily interview show “Editor’s Desk.” He shared the broadcast desk with legendary Indiana sportscaster and station manager Hilliard Gates.
Dick’s impressive on-air following included a broad demographic of viewers who made a point of watching The News with Dick Florea daily. Fort Wayne regional viewers knew when they tuned in a Dick Florea newscast, the stories would be well-researched, and accurately reported, without spin. His delivery was low-key and straight forward, without a hint of pomposity. This mirrored his off-air demeanor of gracious humility. He treated his news sources
with respect and dignity, but did not hesitate to dig into a story until he was certain he had all the facts.
His presence was familiar out in the community, as well as on-air, where he was (and is) heavily involved with civic organizations. He donated hundreds of hours to the non-profit Christian organization Habitat for Humanity, served nine years as president, and in retirement was named Director Emeritus of the Fort Wayne chapter. He produced and hosted the community teacher recognition program called “Excellence in Education”. For 25 years he was the radio voice of the Marion Easter Pageant. He served as president of the Allen County-Ft. Wayne Historical Society; Historic Ft. Wayne, and Quest Club. In retirement he continues to provide leadership on several church and community boards.
Recognized and admired by broadcasters across the state, he is past president of the Indiana Broadcast Pioneers and the Associated Press Broadcasters of Indiana. He is a graduate of Purdue University, where he was regularly heard in the 1950’s on WBAA as a newscaster and classical music host.