November 12, 2013
By Matt Hawkins
November 11, 2013
Los Angeles Dodgers radio broadcaster Charley Steiner ‘71 received radio’s top honor November 9 as he was inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame. The honor, with Bradley representatives in the audience, placed Steiner in elite company with the profession’s greatest voices.
“This place is amazing, and I’m not sure I belong here!” Steiner told the audience.
Steiner shared his journey from Long Island to the Midwest, ESPN, New York and finally Los Angles. That journey included several years as a student worker for Peoria radio station WIRL.
His lifelong dream of broadcasting the Dodgers began as a child listening to Vin Scully on a radio in his mother’s kitchen. Steiner began to chase that dream at Bradley, then from coast-to-coast, with a notable 14 years at ESPN.
Then, a call the fall of 2004 made that dream a reality.
“It was in that small kitchen where I got a phone call from the guy who unknowingly sent me on this career path,” Steiner said. “It was the legendary Vin Scully. Vin said ‘Charley, I just want to welcome you to the Dodger family.’ We should all have a moment like that, if just once in our lives.”
Bradley sports communication major Lee Pikelny ’14, who represented Bradley students at the event, took Steiner’s words as inspiration for his own future.
“It gives me a lot of hope to see how he started,” Pikelny said. “It was a lot about being in the right place at the right time from those early years announcing wherever he could. It’s great to hear that story. I can see myself doing what he did.”
In addition to the inspiration from the famous Bradley alum, Pikelny rubbed shoulders with stars like Reba McEntire and Larry King. The black-tie ceremony, hosted by broadcast icon Larry King, was held at the Museum of Boradcast Communications in Chicago.
“I was thinking about how many celebrities were there while watching it unfold. That was just amazing,” Pikelny said. “It was really touching to watch it all happen. I was so honored to be selected to be there.”
Also attending the award ceremony from Bradley were Paul Gullifor, Chairperson Department of Communication, and Josh Dickhaus, Sports Communication professor.