Hank Booraem


Hendrik (Hank) Booraem died June 9 of cancer in Hendersonville, N.C. He was 95.

Booraem was born in St. Paul, Minn. and started in the business as an actor, appearing with the Lunts in “Reunion in Vienna” for the Theater Guild. He co-authored “The Sky’s the Limit” on Broadway in 1935 while appearing with Philip Merivale’s “Valley Forge.”

After stage managing the Broadway play “Hell Freezes Over,” he was hired to direct in radio. He oversaw shows including “The March of Time,” “The Burns and Allen Show” and “The Screen Guild Theater.”

During WWII, he was chief of operations of the Armed Forces Network, seeting up radio stations in Berlin, Munich and Frankfort.

In 1946 he persuaded Bing Crosby to record his radio show, and sold the program to ABC, effectively breaking the ban on recorded network shows.

During the 1950s he was VP programs for McCann-Erickson and later VP Broadcasting for Ogilvy and Mather. He also served as VP programming at WPIX in New York.

After his retirement he consulted for Norman Lear, developed and produced “The Mother/Daughter Beauty Pageant” and in 1991 founded the Blue Ridge Radio Players, a non-profit group that makes recorded dramas for the visually handicapped.

He is survived by three children, three grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.

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