Sterling Harkins - Legacy
Sterling Harkins’ work in St. Louis radio spanned three stations: KMOX, KWK and KSD.
While specific dates are unavailable, it is known he was a singing staff artist at KMOX from 1926 to 1930, when he was lured to a management slot at an Alabama station. He came back to St. Louis in the early 1930s for a job as studio manager at KWK, which was then located in the Chase Hotel. The job didn’t last long, as Mr. Harkins’ former boss in Alabama called him back to put two new stations on the air.
Harkins’ final broadcasting move came in 1938, when he was hired at Pulitzer’s KSD as a staff announcer. His duties and jobs changed over the years, but he remained in St. Louis until his retirement in 1967. He was a regular participant in “The Land We Live In,” a long-running locally produced radio dramatic series that began on KMOX and then moved to KSD.
Mr. Harkins was one of the first presidents of the local AFRA union, and when KSD-TV signed on in February of 1947, Harkins split his announcing duties between radio and television. In 1959, he was elevated to the job of program manager at KSD radio.