You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

John von Soosten, TV Exec and Former NATPE President, Dies at 71

John von Soosten, a veteran programming exec for New York TV and radio stations and former president of NATPE, died April 13 on Long Island after a short illness. He was 71.

A native of New York, Von Soosten began his career as an engineer at what was then WOR-TV. He moved to what is now WNYW-TV in the era when the station was owned by John Kluge’s MetroMedia. He rose through the ranks from assistant production manager to working in the promotions department to the post of VP and director of programming for the station that became the flagship O&O of Rupert Murdoch’s Fox network.

In 1985, von Soosten was elected president of the National Association of Television Program Executives, just as the organization set off on a growth spurt with the expansion of the national first-run syndication business. He also served on NATPE’s board of directors and on its executive committee.

After WNYW, Von Soosten moved to Katz Television as senior VP and director of programming for the national advertising rep firm, which works with local TV stations around the country.

Von Soosten also worked for New York radio stations WQEW and WNSW, and he hosted the pop music programs “Frank’s Place” and “On Broadway” for XM Satellite Radio.

For the past three years, von Soosten hosted “The Great American Songbook” program for Nantucket’s NPR affiliate, WNCK. Von Soosten divided his time between homes in West Hempstead, N.Y., and Nantucket.

“He had a deep passion the music and artists, and spent his life sharing that passion with us throughout his illustrious broadcasting career,” the station said in a statement.

Survivors include his wife of 45 years, Linda Baron, and two nephews.

More TV

  • "A Solar Calculator, a Game Ball,

    Delayed Viewing Ratings: CBS Rules Thanksgiving Week

    John von Soosten, a veteran programming exec for New York TV and radio stations and former president of NATPE, died April 13 on Long Island after a short illness. He was 71. A native of New York, Von Soosten began his career as an engineer at what was then WOR-TV. He moved to what is […]

  • Frankie Shaw's 'SMILF' Scores Key Comedy

    Frankie Shaw's 'SMILF' Scores Key Comedy Golden Globe Nominations

    John von Soosten, a veteran programming exec for New York TV and radio stations and former president of NATPE, died April 13 on Long Island after a short illness. He was 71. A native of New York, Von Soosten began his career as an engineer at what was then WOR-TV. He moved to what is […]

  • Mario Batali

    Chef Mario Batali on Sexual Harassment: There Should Be 'Zero' Tolerance

    John von Soosten, a veteran programming exec for New York TV and radio stations and former president of NATPE, died April 13 on Long Island after a short illness. He was 71. A native of New York, Von Soosten began his career as an engineer at what was then WOR-TV. He moved to what is […]

  • Fox News Launches Marketing Salvo in

    Fox News Launches Campaign to Woo Morning Viewers

    John von Soosten, a veteran programming exec for New York TV and radio stations and former president of NATPE, died April 13 on Long Island after a short illness. He was 71. A native of New York, Von Soosten began his career as an engineer at what was then WOR-TV. He moved to what is […]

  • MR. ROBOT -- "eps3.5_kill-process.inc" Episode 306

    Our Staff Picks: TV Shows to Watch the Week of Dec. 11, 2017

    John von Soosten, a veteran programming exec for New York TV and radio stations and former president of NATPE, died April 13 on Long Island after a short illness. He was 71. A native of New York, Von Soosten began his career as an engineer at what was then WOR-TV. He moved to what is […]

  • TV Ratings: 'Sunday Night Football' Dips

    TV Ratings: 'Sunday Night Football' Dips From Last Week

    John von Soosten, a veteran programming exec for New York TV and radio stations and former president of NATPE, died April 13 on Long Island after a short illness. He was 71. A native of New York, Von Soosten began his career as an engineer at what was then WOR-TV. He moved to what is […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content