WDRB says goodbye to a behind-the-scenes legend
Our longtime director is retiring after 50 years in broadcasting, 28 of them at WDRB News.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- You probably don't know his name, but he's been bringing you the news for more than 40 years. On Jan. 31, he's doing it for the last time.
Director Arnie Harrah is retiring from WDRB, and the man behind our newscasts has quite a story himself.
Arnie began his broadcasting career working in radio in West Virginia in the early 1970s. He moved to WTVQ in Lexington, where he worked on the children's show "When Happy Met Froggie," and even ended up hosting its last week on the air in 1979.
But Arnie's true passion was making the calls behind the scenes, and he excelled at it. He directed at WHAS in the 1980s then joined WDRB to become the first director of the News at 10 in 1990. He went on to work here for 28 years. By our unscientific calculations, Arnie has directed more than 11,000 newscasts at WDRB alone.
Those of us who have worked with Arnie all these years appreciate his mild manner and cool demeanor, even in the most stressful situations. He's the strong, confident voice who literally calls the shots of our newscasts: which cameras to take, which video to roll, whose microphones are up.
Other longtime Louisville legends took a break from retirement to wish him the best. Former WDRB anchor Don Schroeder sent his best wishes.
"The newsroom is losing its most valuable player," Schroeder said in a video shot on the beach. "You've been there a long, long time and man, you've done a great job. All those newscasts. I really don't know how you did it for so many years."
In a newspaper interview that featured people behind the scenes of TV, Arnie talked about directing.
"It's exciting, because you get one chance at it," he said. "There's an energy in live television you can't produce anywhere."
Arnie himself produced many amazing moments here at WDRB. He's a leader, a mentor and a true friend. And he will always be a part of the WDRB family.
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