Peter Jahns, whose on-air name was adapted from his middle name, John, was a popular radio personality in the Sarasota-Bradenton area for nearly twenty years. From 1972 to 1989, his morning news reports, live interviews and evening call-in talk show on WSPB-AM and sister station WMLO-FM enjoyed a loyal following.
Born Peter John Brass in Brooklyn, New York, Jahns developed an interest in radio while in his teens and pursued his career in Florida after taking speech and acting courses at the University of Connecticut and broadcasting for the Armed Forces Network in Munich, Germany during his 1950’s Army days. When asked why he pursued a radio career instead of acting, he always said it was because it paid more than his Screen Actors Guild card.
During Jahns’ early radio days in the 1960’s, he specialized in news and talk shows and worked with stations in Tampa-St. Petersburg, Bradenton-Sarasota, Ft. Myers, and Orlando before moving on to larger markets like WLS in Chicago (where he also recorded magazines for the blind) and WOKO in Albany, New York. In 1972, he returned to Sarasota and was on the air until 1989 when an ownership change and staff shakeup took him off. He also enjoyed helping local charities as an announcer for their fundraisers and events.
Since retiring from radio, Jahns had been a trainer and supervisor in the Sarasota office of Scarborough Research, a national marketing research firm, and recorded books for CoolBeat Audiobooks in Sarasota.
After fighting non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma for three years and developing kidney disease, Jahns died January 21, 2008 at the age of 69.
1972 - 1989 Other Tampa Bay Area Stations (News)