2 | Jack L. Cooper
Everyone on this list is forever indebted to Jack Leroy Cooper, America’s very first Black radio disc jockey and radio programmer. Despite no formal education and dropping out of elementary school, Cooper paved the way for Black folks to be entertainers on-air and to control the content that was heard. In 1929 he created the “All-Negro Hour” on WSBC in Chicago. He was the first DJ to play gramophone records on air. This was, of course, not without many obstacles as we learn the hurdles that Mr. Cooper faced to lay the groundwork for where Black folks are on radio today.
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