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Helen G. Hatfield

Announcer and Program Director Station WSBF St. Louis
Here she is, the announcer of Station WSBF, in person and not a moving picture. No she does not resemble Gloria Swanson or Constance Talmadge, but she has a lot of short, brown curls and brown eyes. She doesn’t ever have time to be quiet very long, because she has radio for breakfast, dinner and supper as it were. Station WSBF is on the air at least four times each day, noon, afternoon, early evening and midnight, so one would not have much leisure when securing talent to take care of all those entertainments and announce as well.
Miss Hatfield’s office is always welcome to visitors, and she is glad to welcome you to the studio at any hour of the day, and no matter how busy she is, she is always glad to discuss the particular phase of radio in which you may be interested. She extends you just as cordial a greeting whether you happen to be one of the kiddies who are members of her “Sandman Club” or the mayor of the city. She tells with enthusiasm of being stopped on the street by a little newsboy who asked her if she was the radio announcer and when she assented – said, “Here, have a paper, this is on me.”
Yes, roses are her favorite flower and you can send her as many as you wish.
She claims the distinction of being the first woman announcer to broadcast sporting events, such as baseball games, football or even a prize fight. While her interests are varied and she tries to present to the radio fans at little bit of everything they like, she is most interested in the progression of the musical and educational work being done by the station. Under her direction the clubwomen of the city have instituted an educational course which is given under the auspices of the Geo. Innes Study, Inc., each week. This course comprises the best in art, literature and music. The best talent obtainable along these lines is presented on these programs. A course in languages, French and Spanish, is also given. The public library is represented in weekly book reviews and on the children’s hour.
The aim of station WSBF is to serve the community, especially that immediately surrounding St. Louis. Its division of activities has been arranged accordingly so that at some time during the week persons of every age and taste may tune in and be entertained by something that particularly interests them. Its broadcasting may be divided into three groups, entertainment, information and education. Under the heading of information, the St. Louis Times furnishes a daily service which gives the radio listener the stock reports, news items, weather report, the sport events of the season and any other information desired.
Civil service talks, talks on fashion and household hints, interior decorating, Babson business reports, government agricultural information are also furnished.
The Automobile Club of Missouri furnishes a weekly road report as well as daily bulletins.
The educational work by the Geo. Inness Study, Inc., and the public library are discussed above.
The entertainment features provided are for everyone. The children are entertained by the Sandman Club programs on which fairy stories and tales of adventures are told by trained story tellers. The kiddies who are members of the club take turns at entertaining the other members from time to time.
Travel programs and organ recitals (by Tom Terry) are given for the shut-ins. Lovers of good music may enjoy the high-class artist programs and dinner concerts of classical music. For the young folks the Loew's Night Owl and the hotel dance orchestra programs are provided as well as plenty of jazz and popular music. The studio orchestra is directed by Mr. A. B. Jefferis.
Sunday night of each week the de luxe musical program is broadcast from the stage of Loew's State Theater.
Miss Hatfield says she conducts a regular information bureau. If someone wants a singer for their choir or if a singer needs a job they ask if she knows of any to be obtained. When a poem is desired by one of the daily readers of the newspapers they consult her to find out who recited it, or someone may want the address of an artist or entertainer whom they wish to reach, and they telephone her.

(Originally published in Mid-West Radio Magazine, 11/1925).