Robert L. Hoover · 1969
By Douglas L. Dobbs
Robert L. Hoover, the "Dean of Hoosier newsmen," was born in Indiana in 1898, and has "been a police reporter since Noah’s last dog came down off the ark."
Bob Hoover graduated from Manual High School in Indianapolis and shortly thereafter he started as a cub reporter for the Indianapolis News.
In between graduation from high school, and the beginning of his journalism career, Hoover played drums in various orchestras, including his own. "I remember when our band used to go to Indiana University in Bloomington. Hoagy Carmichael used to listen to us. We called ourselves Holler’s Hoosier Harmonics. In fact, Dick Powell used to sing with us at the old Lyric Theater." The Holler’s Hoosier Harmonics was the first ever to broadcast over the air in Indianapolis over The News – Ayres – Hamilton station.
After his musical career Hoover kicked off his career as a newsman in 1919. "I applied for a job with The Indianapolis News. The editor told me to take off my coat and start to work. I did, and I haven’t put it back on yet." He worked for the News 30 years.
On July 30, 1921, Hoover was wed.
He was the cofounder of the Indianapolis Press Club and served as its second president for four terms, from 1934-39. He succeeded Maurice Early.
While at the News he worked at the City Desk, was Assistant Police Reporter and then became the Chief Police Reporter. In 1949 he ended working at the News.
In 1952 Hoover became the chief editor of the state’s magazine, Outdoors in Indiana. He worked on the magazine for four years until in 1956 he landed a job with WIBC radio in Indianapolis.
WIBC is where he is presently working, cranking out 50,000-watt radio stories all over the state and beyond.
Harley Bierce, a former Star reporter, described Hoover as "just getting his second wind after spending a lifetime recording the antics, the foibles, the tragedies and joys of the great, near great" and unknown.
In 1969 Hoover was inducted into the Indiana Journalism Hall of Fame. On September 25, 1976, he was named "Newsman of the Year" by the Indianapolis Press Club.
Bob Hoover started his journalism career working as a cub reporter for the Indianapolis News, starting in 1919. He later moved up to the city desk, then was assistant police reporter, and then became chief police reporter.
Hoover was kept busy reporting fires, court cases, murders and chasing bank robbers, and through is all he was 22 mayors and 27 police chiefs come and go. During this time he found enough time to be the cofounder of the Indianapolis Press Club, and serve as its second president, 1934-1939. He succeeded Maurice Early.
After the News he started to work as the chief editor for Outdoors in Indiana. He was editor of the state’s magazine from 1952-1956.
In 1956 he began his broadcast career as a reporter for the 50,000-watt radio station WIBS, Indianapolis. Never missing a day, he was there still in 1981 after 62 years in the journalism business.
In 1969 Hoover was inducted into the Indiana Journalism Hall of Fame. Besides being the recipient of special awards from the Fraternal Order of Police, Hoover was named Indiana "Newsman of the Year" by the Indianapolis Press Club. The event took place on September 25, 1976, at the Press Club’s 20th Annual Front Page Ball.
Bob Hoover has been a journalist all his life. Every contribution made was, in some way, something to do with the field of journalism.
After he graduated from Manual High School in Indianapolis, Hoover played the drums in various orchestras. He then started his own, known as Holler’s Hoosier Harmonics. They were the first ever to broadcast over the air in Indianapolis over The News – Ayres – Hamilton station.