KETTERING – Terry Lafferty was inducted into the Dayton Area Broadcasters Hall of Fame on Sept. 19 during its ninth bi-annual Induction Gala at NCR Country Club, Kettering.
Lafferty got his first break in broadcasting at WPTW radio in Piqua. Oscar Baker, the father of WHIO reporter Steve Baker, was the owner and station manager and offered Lafferty an air shift on Sunday afternoons. Lafferty also was offered and accepted full-time summer employment for the next three years. During summers he stayed with his grandparents on South Main Street in Piqua and rode a bicycle to work. That summer job was enough to help pay tuition at the University of Dayton and to put a little aside for a used car.
During his last year in college, Lafferty was working three jobs every week: at the university-owned WVUD-FM, WKEF television and WPTW.
As a graduating senior, Lafferty won the James D. Shouse Award from AVCO Broadcasting Corp. The Shouse Award was named for a pioneer broadcast executive at AVCO Broadcasting Corp., formerly the Crosley Broadcasting Corporation. It was awarded for many years at eight area universities to the outstanding senior for academic and co-curricular achievement in the broadcasting arts. It was the only time it was awarded to a non-communications major.
After graduation in 1969, Lafferty was offered and he accepted a position as a master control operator at WKEF-TV and, for an additional $35 a week, announcing duties. Lafferty also was the first director of a couple of children’s programs, including “Clubhouse22.” At the same time, Lafferty was a weekend DJ at WING in Dayton. With the Vietnam War raging on, Lafferty had the honor of doing a hosting a weekly request show for members of the military and their families.
In 1970, Lafferty joined the WING news department, which at the time was Dayton’s largest all-radio news organization. Lafferty spent a couple of years as the night-shift news anchor before moving to mornings. In the mid-1970s, Lafferty and Kathy O’Connor became WING’s first airborne traffic reporters with their “Skywatch” traffic reports.
Lafferty was lured to WHIO radio by Winston Hoehner in 1980. There he was a producer and writer for the morning news and a mid-day and Saturday news anchor. In 1989, when WHIO-FM switched to the modern country format as K-99.1 FM, Lafferty was drafted as its first news anchor. During this same time frame, Lafferty also was a video tape editor for NewsCenter 7.
In 2004, Lafferty took his anchoring duties to WLW in Cincinnati. After eight years, Lafferty, tired of the commute, decided to retire.
Meanwhile, the Piqua radio station’s new owner, Richard Muzzy, had contacted Lafferty to reconsider retirement. The owner finally convinced him in 2015 (50 years after starting in Piqua) to provide newscasts for the station from his home studio.
Lafferty and his wife, Patricia, have two daughters and six grandchildren.