Thursday, December 26, 1996
Al Schottelkotte: 1927-1996
A Life Remembered

The Cincinnati Enquirer

'Al Schottelkotte's Spotlight Report' was a staple of WCPO newscasts.
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March 19, 1927 - Albert J. Schottelkotte was born to Mr. and Mrs. Albert. W. Schottelkotte of Cheviot.

March 19, 1943 - On his 16th birthday, as a high school sophomore, he was hired as a copy boy at The Enquirer.

June 1943 - Accepted a full-time reporting job at The Enquirer, at the height of World War II. He never completed high school.

September 1950 - Began a two-year stint in the U.S. Army during the Korean War, giving current affairs lectures. The public speaking experience led him into broadcasting.

July 1951 - Married Virginia Louise Gleason, with whom he had 12 children.

March 1953 - Shortly after returning to The Enquirer, he began writing the "Talk of the Town" column and broadcasting a 6 p.m. newscast (and daily "Spotlight Report" feature) on WSAI-AM. He becomes a full-time columnist in 1956.

June 1959 - Named WCPO-TV (Channel 9) 11 p.m. newscaster (in addition to Enquirer column and 6 p.m. WSAI-AM newscast).

January 1961 - At age 33, he quit The Enquirer for a full-time broadcasting career at WCPO-TV and WCPO-AM. He would win the 11 p.m. news ratings for 22 consecutive years (1960-82).

March 1961 - After Channel 9 switched to CBS from ABC, he appeared on CBS'Gunsmoke as a bailiff.

February 1971 - Named vice president for news for Scripps Howard Broadcasting at age 43, the youngest vice president in company history.

December 1973 - A Rembrandt stolen from the Taft Museum was given to Mr. Schottelkotte, who showed it to his 11 p.m. viewers while police fumed off-camera and threatened him with obstructing justice.

May 1977 - Presented a Governor's Award for career achievement by the regional chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.

July 1977 - Slugged an unknown intruder who had burst into Channel 9's studio and ran toward the anchor desk as a filmed fire report aired on the 11 p.m. news. The man fell down, then ran out of the studio. He was never found or identified.

October 1980 - Borrowed a remote TV truck from Dayton's WHIO-TV to broadcast live from the Channel 9 parking lot. Police had sealed off the station when an armed gunman, James Hoskins, barged in late one night and held nine employees hostage for several hours. Channel 9's coverage earned several national awards, including a Peabody for reporter Elaine Green's gunpoint interview with Mr. Hoskins.

October 1981 - Promoted to senior vice president at Scripps Howard Broadcasting.

June 1982 - Announced he would leave the 11 p.m. news after Nick Clooney's WKRC-TV (Channel 12) Eyewitness News passed Channel 9 in May "sweeps" ratings. He remained as 6 p.m. news anchor and Scripps Howard senior vice president.

August 1982 - Anchored the last 11 p.m. Al Schottelkotte News after 23 years. He moved into a new job, Channel 9 station manager, while remaining on the early evening news.

December 1985 - Named Scripps Howard Foundation president; continued to anchor the 6 p.m. news.

August 1986 - At age 59, anchored his final Channel 9 newscast (5:30-6:30 p.m. after the station hired Carol Williams to co-anchor with Pat Minarcin. His "Al Schottelkotte's Spotlight Report" features remained on the 6 p.m. news until 1994.

January 1988 - Married former Channel 9 reporter Elaine Green.

June 1990 - Named one of five charter members of the Cincinnati Journalism Hall of Fame established by the Society of Professional Journalists.

June 6, 1992 - Inducted into the Cincinnati Historical Society's Cincinnati Broadcast Hall of Fame.

December 5, 1996 - Named chairman of the Scripps Howard Foundation.