Ken Jones, 90
Ken Jones, who founded the predecessor to KPBS in San Diego, died Oct. 23  in that city. He was 90. While a speech communications professor at San Diego State College (now university) in the 1950s, Jones began work to launch a campus educational radio station. MORE
Winter Horton Jr., 80
Winter D. Horton Jr., a leader in public broadcasting since the 1960s, died Nov. 12 in Pasadena, Calif. He was 80. In 1964 Horton was among the founders of Los Angeles public television station KCET. MORE
Erich Kunzel, 74
Erich Kunzel, conductor of PBS popular July 4th and Memorial Day concerts from the west lawn of the U.S. Capitol, died Sept. 1 , in Bar Harbor, Maine, of complications from liver, colon and pancreatic cancers. MORE
Christie Romero, 63
Christie Romero, an Antiques Roadshow jewelry appraiser and expert, died Sept. 5  of complications from pancreatic cancer. She was 63. MORE
Lewis Zager, 58
Lewis Zager, former director of PBS’s Digital Strategic Services Group, died Aug. 16  of complications from leukemia. He was 58. MORE
Ron Daugherty, 60
Ron Daugherty, 60, general manager of KYUK-AM/FM/TV in Bethel, Alaska, died June 23 in the emergency room of Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta Regional Hospital in Bethel. Cause of death was complications from a severe allergic reaction. MORE
Norman Pellegrini, 79
Norman Pellegrini, program director at Chicago’s classical WFMT-FM for 43 years, died July 2 at St. Joseph’s Hospital in the city. He was two weeks shy of his 80th birthday. He had liver and pancreatic cancer, according to his longtime partner, Donald Knight, the Chicago Tribune reported. MORE
John Callaway, 72
John Callaway, famous in Chicago as the interviewer extraordinaire who originated the longtime favorite WTTW show Chicago Tonight, died of a heart attack June 23  — exactly 10 years to the day after his last show, the station noted. He was 72. MORE
Kathleen Acord, 47
Kathleen Acord of San Mateo, Calif., director of education for KQED in San Francisco until January, died in a car accident June 14 . She was 47. MORE
Sheryl Flowers, 42
Sheryl Flowers, longtime executive producer of public radio’s Tavis Smiley Show, described by Smiley as “the creative force, the genius most responsible for making me sound a whole lot smarter than I am,” died June 8. She was 42. MORE
David Kurzer, 57,
David Kurzer, an accountant at WNET/WLIW in New York City, died June 13  after a five-year battle with lymphoma. He was 57. MORE
Janet Larrabee Mitchell, 93
Janet Larrabee Mitchell, a member of WTTW-TV's board of trustees since 1973 and a co-founder of the National Friends of Public Broadcasting, died Feb. 6 in Evanston, Ill., of complications from a heart attack in May 2008.
In a statement, Newton Minow, former WTTW chairman and life trustee, said Mitchell "set an example not only for WTTW, but for all of public television."
Mitchell was instrumental in founding National Friends of Public Broadcasting in 1970, "to help the stations to understand the importance of volunteers and how to use volunteers in good ways," Judy Dunson, a Friends trustee, told the Chicago Tribune.
NFPB remains active, holding a yearly conference in conjunction with the annual meeting of PBS and APTS.
She was preceded in death by her husband of 69 years, Lyman Mitchell, in 2007. She is survived by two sons, four grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.
Virgil Bisset, 79
Virgil Bisset, 79, a longtime producer and host of radio shows on the Maine Public Broadcasting Network, died Feb. 22 in Brewer, Maine, after a short illness.
He was hired by the Maine network in 1976 and worked there until retirement in the mid-1990s. He hosted the public affairs call-in program Maine Concerns. His Read to Me program with co-producer Charles Halsted won the 1991 Achievement in Children's Broadcasting Award.
Bisset had worked at radio stations in Okinawa, Japan; New York, and Connecticut before settling in Maine. He also did stints as a newspaper reporter for the Christian Science Monitor, the Syracuse (N.Y.) Post-Standard and the Berkshire Eagle in Pittsfield, Mass.
He was an Army medic stationed in Germany between 1951 and '53.
Bisset is survived by a sister and brother.
A memorial service is planned for April in Bangor.
W. Brock Brentlinger, 82
W. Brock Brentlinger, 82, founder of KVLU in Beaumont, Texas, and considered "the father of public broadcasting in Southeast Texas," died Feb. 19. Brentlinger was instrumental in the creation of public radio station KVLU, licensed in 1974 to Lamar University in Beaumont.
"He advocated for us," station manager Byron Balentine told the Beaumont Enterprise. "We were his baby. He was always around, and he lent a hand any way he could, but he never interfered."
Brentlinger served as dean of the College of Fine Arts & Communication from 1969 to 1992 and interim president of the university from 1992 to 1993. He was assistant to the university president from 1993 until retiring in December 2005.
He is survived by his wife of 62 years, Barbara; three sons, two daughters and 10 grandchildren.
Memorial contributions may be made to Calder Baptist Church 1005 N. 11th St., Beaumont, TX 77702; Lamar University Friends of the Arts, P.O. Box 10011, Beaumont, TX 77710; or to Greenville College, 315 E. College Ave., Greenville, IL 62246.
Mary Kleberg, 88
Mary Kleberg, 88, a founding director of KEDT public TV and radio in Corpus Christi, Texas, died Feb. 24.
KEDT went on the air for the first time in 1972 in a vacant school building.
Kleberg was also involved in the Art Museum of South Texas, the Texas State Aquarium and the Christus Spohn’s hospice program. She received the Otis West Lifetime Service Award in 1995 from the Kingsville Chamber of Commerce.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Richard Kleberg Jr., in 1979. Survivors include three sons, a daughter and numerous children and great-grandchildren.
Memorial contributions in Mrs. Kleberg's name be made to: Epiphany Episcopal School, 206 N. Third Street, Kingsville, TX 78363; Friends of Hospice San Antonio, P.O. Box 40487, San Antonio, TX 78229; or Thrive Well Cancer Foundation, START Research, P.O. Box 29331, San Antonio, TX 78229.
Woody Wickham, 66
Woodward A. (Woody) Wickham, 66, a strong supporter of independent documentary films and public media producers, died of cancer Jan. 18  at his home in Chicago. MORE
Robin Breed Ashley, 74
Robin Breed Ashley, a former PBS programmer and onetime executive producer of The Dick Cavett Show, died Jan. 17, 2009, in Cambridge, Mass., of complications of pulmonary disease. She was 74. MORE
Gene Parrish, 82
Gene Parrish, a longtime pubradio broadcaster known for his programs on classical, jazz, opera and choral music, died Jan. 2  of lung cancer in Harbor City, Calif. He was 82. MORE