WTRR-AM 1400 

Original Call Letters: WTRR

Originally Licensed: May 20, 1947 

Original City of License: Sanford 

Original Frequency: 1400 

Origin of Call Letters: Named for first owners son; Tolliver R. Rivers                                                      

Original Power: 250 Watts                                                                                                                                                                                     

Original Location: Mayfair Inn, on Lake Monroe                                                                                                                                                                                                                               logo courtesy of Rick Padilla

Original Format: Block Programming

Network Affiliation(s):

Keystone Broadcasting System
Associated Press Radio
Florida News Network
American Radio Network
Sun Radio Network
Westwood One


1947-Southeastern Broadcasting System 
1947-Radio Station WTRR  ($50,000)
1977-Seminole Radio Corp.  ($221,000)
1984-Emmett Broadcasting Co.
1986-Seminole-Orange Broadcasting ($325,000)
1987-Metro Orlando Broadcasters ($335,000)
1988-John Torrado
1989-River Country Broadcasting
1989-Metro Orlando Broadcasters Inc. ($417,000)
1992-J&V Communications ($300,00)

History Of Call Letters and Formats:

WTRR-1947-Block Programming
WTRR-1971-Top 40  "The Rock On The River" 
WTRR-1974-Adult Rock
WTRR-1978-MOR   "TR14"  
WTRR-1979-Modern Country   "1400 Radio"
WWJZ-1983-Oldies   "Happy Days Sound"
WUEZ-1984-Big Bands/Standards  " WUEZ - Easy 14"
WUEZ-1986- Adult Contemporary  "Z-14"
WKUS-1987-Adult Contemporary/MOR/Country
WNSI-1988-Adult Contemporary "News, Sports & Information"
WTRR-1991-Adult Standards  ABC "Stardust" format
WTRR-1994-Talk  "Power Talk"
WTRR-1998-Spanish  "Su Nuevo Amor"
History of WTRR

This is where WTRR first broadcast from 1947 until 1949.
The hotel was called the Mayfair Inn.

The New Tribes Mission today

Aug 1949-Sanford station WTRR moves from the Mayfair Inn to the new building on E. First Street & Mellonville Ave.
Who remembers WTRR radio station down on E. First Street? Did you know the building is still standing today? -- In 1947 Mr. Thomas Rivers applied to the City of Sanford to build a radio tower on City owned property near E. First Street & Mellonville Ave. The radio call letters come from Mr. Rivers son, Thomas R. Rivers -- WTRR. The tower was erected in 1947 & radio broadcasts began from the Mayfair Hotel and continued from the Mayfair for nearly 3 years. In late 1947, Mr. Rivers assigned the station over to Myron Reck. Mr. Reck applied to the City to build a new building on City property. Finished in early 1949, the building and tower were owned by Reck, but the land was owned by the City of Sanford. In 1967, Mr. Jeno was looking for land & purchased the lot that the radio station & tower sat on from the City of Sanford. At that point, Mr. Reck wanted to buy the land from Mr. Paulucci, but a deal could not be worked out. In 1968, Mr. Reck made the decision to purchase land out on Celery Avenue & build a new station there, along with moving his tower. -- Mr. Paulucci moved his local business offices into the old WTRR building, along with modifying the outside of the building with a brick veneer. As you can see, the building is still standing in the same location today. (From the "History of WTRR, Sanford, Florida", written by Christine Kinlaw-Best for the Sanford Historical Society)

The Tampa Tribune
Mar. 1, 1947

The Federal Communications Commission today authorized operation of this new radio station. James S. Rivers, trading as Southeastern Broadcasting Co., Sanford, Fla., 1400 kilocycles, 250 watts, unlimited time, conditional upon meeting engineering requirements.

Radio Station Sale
Sarasota Herald-Tribune
Dec 16, 1948

Washington -(AP)-Authority to sell radio station WTRR at Sanford, Fla., to Myron A. Reck has been asked of the Federal Communications Commission
by owner James S. Rivers. The price is fixed at $50,000. Reck has asked that the name of the station, which operates as the southeastern broadcasting system, be changed to radio station WTRR. 

In June of 2003, I had the pleasure of speaking with Mr. Bill Reck. He was a partner along with his father, Myron Reck in the ownership of WTRR. He gave me invaluable "first hand" information which you'll find here. 
 The origin of the call letters: Named for first owner, Mr. Rivers son, Tolliver R. Rivers. Originally broadcast from the Mayfair Inn on 1st Street in Sanford.Now the New Tribes Mission. The station had "block programming", which meant blocks of time were set aside for a variety of programming that spanned the musical spectrum. There was a slot for popular music, a slot for easy listening, a slot for country, and, as a sound called rock 'n' roll percolated, a slot for rhythm and blues. 

There were also live broadcasts on election nights and "Sanforama,'' a three-day trade show for local merchants broadcast live from the Sanford Civic Center.

In the early 1950’s the station was moved from the Mayfair to a building  “across the side street” from the "old" Centr
al Florida Regional Hospital, which now is the Seminole County Services Bldg. In 1961 the station boosted its power from 250 watts to 1,000 watts and in 1968, it moved into Its new studios on Celery Avenue.The first building built by Myron, then later a second building built by Bill Reck.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Station as it appears today on Celery Ave.

By 1977 Myron Reck would retire, Bill was in full partnership with his dad, and sold the station to Smith Broadcasting out of Wisconsin. Bill would move to Canton, North Carolina. When the Recks sold WTRR, they ended up in Western North Carolina due to the location of WPTL-AM 920 being right outside the radius of the non-compete clause the father-and-son signed when selling WTRR which he continues to own and operate. In 1981 Bill Reck moved back to Sanford and managed Sanford's WTRR for Bob Smith (Smith Broadcasting) who wanted to move back to Wisconsin.

Formats: Block programming. 1947-1967 "Pop" in the A.M., Easy listening mid days, and a Country/Western program called the “Bar None Ranch”. After school hours “pop” skewed toward a younger audience. “The Rhythm Hour” would be on the air from 5 to 6PM nightly. This was the first African American oriented program and would run from 1949 until the 1960’s. 1967 would see a more standard format of Adult contemporary, news and Seminole High School Football. 

In 1992 Spanish-language programming was added to its English-language format, the station's new owners, J&V Communications announced. The station, based in Sanford, debuted Spanish-language programming July 5 after its June 15 acquisition by J & V Communications Co., a communications company established by John and Virgen Torrado of Deltona. The two purchased the station for $300,000 from William A. Masi, president of Metro-Orlando Broadcasters Inc. Spanish programming airs on Sundays from 2PM to 6PM.

WTRR Personalities

Bill Reck-1958-1977-Co-Owner/General Manager/Program Manager-Radio Station WTRR/1974-Operating Partner-Communico Broadcasting  In Memory

Gilbert D. Brooks-1947-Program Director-Southern Broadcasting System  

Julian Stenstrom
-1947-Sports Director-Radio Station WTRR
In Memory
J. Marion Harmon, Sr.-1950-Program Director/1951-News Directort-Radio Station WTRR

Nick Pfeifauf
-1954-1964-News Director/Program Director-Radio Station WTRR  
In Memory
Samuel E. Poison and his wife, Arlene Poison-1954-"Music For Moderns" (Jazz)-Radio Station WTRR

Gil Luck-1959-1970-Radio Station WTRR  

From an email from Gil "... I worked every shift on the station at various times. Did Seminole Junior College and Seminole High School play-by-play..."
Harry Elwood (Harry Bierly)-1966-Air Personality/Chief Engineer In Memory 
Tim Trott-1970-1975-Program Director/Mornings/News Director-Radio Station WTRR

George Crossley-1970-1971-Air Personality/Sales-Radio Station WTRR 
Biography    In Memory
Jerry Allen (Terry Stuhr)-1974-1977-Afternoon Drive/Program Director/Music Director/Play-by-play announcer of the Friday night football games for the (Sanford) Seminole High School "Fighting Seminoles".  They were in contention for the state championship in those years. David Schulz ran the board during those broadcasts
Beau Taylor-1974-1976-Captain in the Seminole County Sheriff's Department-Communico Broadcasting
Chuck Thomas-1975-1977-Mornings-Radio Station WTRR
David Schulz-1976-1978-Evenings-Radio Station WTRR
Len Russell-1977-Program Director-Seminole Radio Corp. 
Jim Sandridge-1977-Music Director-Seminole Radio Corp. 
Mel Clark-1977-News Director/Program Director-Seminole Radio Corp.

Ken (KP) Manning-1979-1982-Program Director-Seminole Radio Corp
Biography    In Memory

Larry Edwards
-1979-1983-Seminole Radio Corp
Bob Anthony-1979-1983-Seminole Radio Corp

Patricia Madden-1980-Seminole Radio Corp. 

Rick Padilla-1983-Program Director-Seminole Radio Corp. 
Darren Chase (Bill Klinger)-1990-Talk Show Host-River Country Broadcasting
Jimmy V.-1992-6AM-9AM-Metro-Orlando Broadcasters Inc.
Homan Machuca-1992-News Director-J&V Communications Co.

Chuck Harder-1992-"For the People"-3PM-5PM weekdays
-J&V Communications Co.   In Memory
Cmdr. Bill Hasson (of The Sanford Police Department)-1993-Noon-1PM Fridays-J&V Communications 
Joe Episcopo-1994-1999-Air Personality/General Manager-J&V Communications 
Kathy Llamas-1995-1998-Sales Manager/Host of "Info Line"-4PM-5PM-J&V Communications 
Dominic Anthony-1995-2000-Host-"The Unexplained"/Production Manager-J&V Communications 
Kimm Fisher-1996-Host-"For Women Only''-Mon-4PM-5PM/ 1997-7PM-8PM-Wed-J&V Communications 

Connie Fishbaugh-1997-"Town Talk"-1PM-2PM Monday through Friday-J&V Communications  
Jim DeBerry-1999-2002-"The Unfunny Serious Show"-J&V Communications 
Robin Nathan Hood-1999-2002-"The Unfunny Serious Show"-J&V Communications 
Mickey Gold-2000-Co-host-"Ages of Rock"-9PM-Midnight Saturdays 
Tom Borkes-2000-Co-host-"Ages of Rock"-9PM-Midnight Saturdays

Lee Moss-"Night Train"-6:30PM-9PM-Pop Music/9PM-10PM-Easy Listening-Radio Station WTRR

Wayne Trout
-News Director   Biography     In Memory
Arthur Beckwith-Clerk of the Seminole County Court
Sal Tee (Salvatore Taglireno)-"Solid  Gold Reunion"-weekdays, 10AM-2PM-see WDBO-AM 580 and  WHHL-AM 1190
Russ Ross  Biography
Nancy Ramsey who later went on to be "Lisa Young" at WWKA-FM 92.3
Jack Smith-Seminole Radio Corp
Bruce Schirard

Ken Dixon  
Dave Hammond
Mike Creiger

Bill Bauman-News Director 

Terry A. Stuhr-Program Director

Kimm Marie Gillem-Host-"For Women Only"

Tommy Roberts
Bob Smith


Other Names IN WTRR History

James S. Rivers-1947-President/General Manager-Southern Broadcasting System 

Joseph Paris-1947-Commercial Manager-Southern Broadcasting System 

Bruce Smith-1947-Program Director-Southern Broadcasting System 

Emerson Browne-1947-Chief Engineer-Southern Broadcasting System 

J. Marion Harman, Sr.-1947-Station Manager/Commercial Manager-Southern Broadcasting System/1948-Program Director/News Director/Women's Director-Radio Station WTRR

Myron Reck-1947-Co-Owner/-Radio Station WTRR/1974-Operating Partner-Communico Broadcasting   

Edna "Mickie" Reck-1947-Assistant Manager/1948-Women's Director-Radio Station WTRR   In Memory

Dick Aiken-1947-Commercial Manager-Radio Station WTRR

Ralph Spotts-1947-Farm Director/1962-Chief Engineer-Radio Station WTRR/1974-Chief Engineer-Communico Broadcasting

James Fields-1947-Sports Director-Radio Station WTRR 

Lonnie Padron-1948-Promotions Director-Radio Station WTRR

James Williamson, Jr.-1948-Chief Engineer-Radio Station WTRR

Bob Smith-1948-Farm News Director-Radio Station WTRR

J. Marion Harman Sr.-1954-Program Director-Radio Station WTRR

JT Almon-1974-Commercial Manager-Communico Broadcasting

Robert E. "Bob" Smith-1977-1984-President/General Manager/Commercial Manager-Seminole Radio Corp    In Memory

John Popp-1977-Chief Engineer-Seminole Radio Corp

Laurie Wontenay-1977-Promotion Manager-Seminole Radio Corp. 

Gladys "Shorty" Holzmann-1977-Station Manager/Sales-Seminole Radio Corp. 

Larry Hadley-1989-President/General Manager-River Country Broadcasting 

William Massi-1989-CEO/President-Metro Orlando Broadcasters Inc.

Frank Vaught
-1989-General Manager/Station Manager/Advertising Director/Program Director-Metro Orlando Broadcasters Inc.  
 In Memory

Jim Vinson-1989-General Sales Manager/Promotions Director/Public Affairs Director-Metro Orlando Broadcasters Inc.
Ron Sutton-1989-General Sales Manager-Metro-Orlando Broadcasters Inc.
April Hawkins-1989-Promotions Manager-Metro-Orlando Broadcasters Inc.
Ovie Loman-1989-Chief Engineer-Metro-Orlando Broadcasters Inc.
Tim Wade-1991-Chief Engineer-Metro-Orlando Broadcasters Inc.

John Torrado-1992-CEO/President/General Manager/Marketing Director/Program Manager/Program Director-J&V Communications Co.

Virgen Torrado-1992-Co-owner-J&V Communications Co.

Jack Weible-Sales Manager

Bill Burgess  In Memory
Hank Elwood

Harry Bierly, Jr.-Chief Engineer-Radio Station WTRR 

Other Programs In WTRR History 

M4 Radio-1996 to 1998-(Indie Radio)-Lance Stinson and Stormy-Weeknights 7PM-10PM-J&V Communications Co.
"Teen Connection"-1997-written and produced by high school teens, from 3:30PM-4PM-Tue-J&V Communications Co.  
PhilRadio International-1998-Kathy Llamas-J&V Communications Co.  

Chuck Harder-"For The People"      In Memory

Orlando_Sentinel_Jun_1982.jpg (127919 bytes)                                                    

Orlando_Sentinel_Jun_1982_2.jpg (68739 bytes)

Orlando Sentinel Jan 31, 1997

3. Popularly called the "Mayfair," this huge brick and stucco hotel was designed by Sanford architect Elton J. Moughton. The hotel was built in 1925 for Forrest Lake, the Mayor of Sanford, and was part of the waterfront beautification plans, which led to the construction of Seminole Boulevard. Like the boulevard, the hotel sits on reclaimed land in an area that once separated the city of Sanford from the town on Mellonville. In 1930 the failed hotel was purchased by the City and renamed the Mayfair Hotel. In 1948, the hotel was purchased by the New York Giants. From 1963 to 1977 the building housed the Sanford Naval Academy and the interior was significantly altered. The hotel is now the international headquarters of the New Tribes Mission. The exterior is largely original.


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