John Browning, Jr.
A fourth generation Sarasotan, John started working at WSPB in 1943 while still in high school. Interviewing for the job was easy – his father, John, Sr., was vice-president and general manager of the station. Since he possessed a first class ticket his first job there was sitting transmitter duty, but by early the next year, an air shift was added which lasted until he graduated in June 1945 and left to join the Navy.
Following the end of WWII, John enrolled in classes at the University of Florida. His schooling, however, was interrupted when he got married and left to join the staff of WHIT in New Bern, N. C. After about a year there he returned to his studies in Gainesville while working a full shift as a transmitter engineer for WRUF, a station on the University’s main campus. The hard work and long hours paid off in 1951 when he was awarded a degree in electronics engineering.
Right out of college, John joined Westinghouse Electric Company on the Graduate Student Training Program, spending time in both Pittsburgh and Baltimore before choosing the Electronics Division as his permanent job assignment location. For the next 37 years, he traveled extensively for the company while holding a number of engineering and management positions. During this time he was in charge of systems installation and customer support programs involving sophisticated defense electronics products worldwide.
In 1988 John retired from Westinghouse and returned to Sarasota. Today (2007) he and his wife, Vivian, continue to live there. He’s a member and past director of the Downtown Kiwanis Club, past director of the Kiwanis Foundation, and Director of the Sarasota Pines Nursing Home. He has also been vice chairman of the county’s Public Facilities Financing Advisory Board, a member of the City of Sarasota Citizen Tax Oversight Committee, and served on the City Parks, Recreation and Environmental Protection Board for 6 years, and the City Board of Adjustment for 7 years. He’s a member, past president and past treasurer of the Harbor Acres Community Neighborhood Association and has served as a vice president and secretary of the Sarasota City Coalition of Neighborhood Associations. He also belongs to the Civic League, the Sarasota Historical Society and the Sarasota Alliance for Historical Preservation.
1943 - 1947 Other Tampa Bay Area Stations (Engineering)
1943 - 1947 Other Tampa Bay Area Stations (On Air Personality)