Dick Kernen receives tribute from State of Michigan
Specs Howard School of Media Arts Vice President of Industry Relations, Dick Kernen, was recently given Special Tribute from the State of Michigan to honor his 40 years of service to the school and industry.
The award was presented by State Representative George T. Darany (D-Dearborn), as a "Special Tribute to Dick Kernen" and was signed by State Senator Morris W. Hood III (D-Detroit) and Governor Rick Snyder.
Kernen's career began as a mail carrier for WXYZ AM in 1956. After a short navy career, Kernen spent 12 years at WXYZ, moving from through the ranks with various mid-level positions. In 1966, the FCC ruled AM and FM stations could no longer be simulcast, and in 1969, Kernen assumed a programming role for WXYZ's FM station, at a time when most vehicles did not even have FM radios. He helped popularize the station under its new WRIF moniker and is responsible for hiring one of Detroit's most recognizable voices: Arthur Penhallow, who was known as Cicero Grimes at the time at WNRS in Ann Arbor.
By 1972, Kernen had years of broadcasting and networking experience, making his transition to a career with Specs Howard a natural evolution. As an instructor and placement advisor for Specs Howard School, Kernen has been a cornerstone in the broadcasting industry for the State of Michigan, having placed thousands of Specs Howard graduates in radio, television and other media positions.