- NAME: Hal Jackson
- OCCUPATION: Business Leader, Disc Jockey
- BIRTH DATE: November 03, 1915
- DEATH DATE: May 23, 2012
- Did You Know?: In 1990, Hal Jackson became the first African American to be inducted into the National Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame.
- Did You Know?: Hal Jackson was the first African-American host of a continuing radio program on a network.
- Did You Know?: With Percy Sutton, Hal Jackson acquired WLIB-AM and WBLS-FM, New York City's first African American-owned and -operated radio stations.
- EDUCATION: Dunbar High School, Howard University
- PLACE OF BIRTH: Charleston, South Carolina
- PLACE OF DEATH: New York, New York
- Full Name: Harold Baron Jackson
- AKA: Harold Jackson
- AKA: Hal Jackson
Best Known For
Hal Jackson was an on-air host and DJ known for his work in racial integration via radio, and for later co-founding the Inner City Broadcasting Corporation.
Think you know about Biography?
Answer questions and see how you rank against other players.Play Now
Hal Jackson was estimated to be born on November 3, 1915, in Charleston, South Carolina. He went on to integrate radio airwaves with shows in Maryland, New York and Washington, D.C., and programs like The House That Jack Built. Surviving payola charges, Jackson eventually co-founded the Inner City Broadcasting Corporation and later hosted the show Sunday Morning Classics. He died on May 23, 2012.
"If you think you are beaten, you are. If you think you dare not, you don't. It's all in your state of mind."
"This is Hal Jackson, the host that loves you the most, welcoming you to 'The House That Jack Built.' We're rolling out the musical carpet, and we'll be spinning a few just for you. So come on in, sit back, relax and enjoy your favorite recording stars from here to Mars."
"You have to be willing to make sacrifices, and when you succeed, you should reach back and try to help others."
"I've got to pack the the shellac and hit the track, but I'll be back."
"Hal was a giant. He was a first for so many, for radio and black radio. He was always looking for ways to bring people in the industry up."
Harold "Hal" Baron Jackson was born on or around November 3, 1915, in Charleston, South Carolina, to Laura Rivers and Eugene Baron Jackson. His parents died when Jackson was still a boy, and he stayed with other family members for a time before living on his own in a Washington, D.C., boardinghouse at only 13 years old.
Jackson excelled at a variety of athletics at Dunbar High School, including baseball and tennis, and went on to attend Howard University, where he worked as a college sports announcer. Through sheer panache, Jackson secured a spot providing commentary to the crowd at games for the Homestead Grays, who were part of the Negro Leagues.
By the end of the 1930s, Hal Jackson had approached Washington, D.C.-based WINX with an idea for an interview program, with management telling him in racial derogatory language that an African American would never work at the station. Jackson then decided to get a sponsor, C. Coley, who owned a restaurant chain, and hired the white advertising agency Erlich & Merrick to secure 15 minutes of WINX airtime.
Jackson arrived right before showtime with his first guest, Mary McLeod Bethune, and got on the air before any of the higher-ups could stop him. The show was an immediate hit and came to be known as The Bronze Review, with Jackson taking on both celebrity culture and political matters with figures like Lena Horne and Eleanor Roosevelt.
Over the next few months, Jackson expanded his broadcasts to three other stations in the D.C. and Maryland area, and eventually launched his music show, The House That Jack Built, on WOOK. By the mid-1950s, he had relocated to New York, broadcasting at stations WMCA and WLIB and appearing on live WABC shows from Birdland, the legendary New York City jazz club. Jackson became the first African-American host of a continuing radio program on a network. He also helped integrate the on-air roster of WMCA.
Jackson was caught in the payola scandal of the early 1960s and, facing allegations of taking money for song play and doing janitorial work to support his family, lost his WLIB job. Charges were eventually dropped, with some asserting that Jackson was targeted for his active support of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. (Jackson had been known for previous activism as well, having helped end racist policies at D.C. fashion retailers and forming an all-black basketball team.)
Throughout the rest of the decade, Jackson worked in Philadelphia, New York and New Jersey radio, and co-hosted live concerts. He was also responsible for helming the Miss Black Teen America Contest, which later became known as Talented Teens International.
profile name: Hal Jackson profile occupation:
Sign in with Facebook to see how you and your friends are connected to famous icons.
Your Friends' Connections
Included In These Groups
Famous Scorpios 554 people in this group
Famous People Named Harold 10 people in this group
Famous People Named Jackson 37 people in this group