Jim Scott Obituary: Legendary WLW Radio Host Dies at 81

A legendary Cincinnati voice has gone silent. Jim Scott, the beloved radio personality known for his tenure as the morning radio host on 700 WLW-AM, passed away on Friday at the age of 81 after battling amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Scott’s career spanned nearly five decades, during which he became a fixture in the lives of many Cincinnati residents.

Early Life and Career

NameDate of BirthPlace of Birth
James Boland (Jim Scott)May 2, 1942Binghamton, New York

Jim Scott, born James Boland, began his illustrious career in broadcasting as a high school senior in Binghamton, New York, in 1960. His entry into radio marked the beginning of a journey that would see him become one of Cincinnati’s most cherished voices.

Early Broadcasting Years

Scott’s early years in broadcasting were marked by his dedication and passion for the medium. He quickly made a name for himself with his engaging on-air presence and ability to connect with listeners.

1960Local Binghamton StationHigh School Senior, Radio Host
1968WSAI-AM 1360Morning Host

The Cincinnati Years

Jim Scott made his debut on Cincinnati’s airwaves on March 23, 1968, hosting mornings on WSAI-AM 1360. His voice became a staple for Cincinnatians waking up each day.

WLW-AM Tenure

In 1984, Scott transitioned to WLW-AM, where he would solidify his status as a morning radio legend. Over the years, he became known for his warm, friendly demeanor and his ability to engage with a diverse audience.

1984WLW-AMMorning Host

Contributions and Achievements

Community Engagement

Jim Scott was not just a radio host; he was an integral part of the Cincinnati community. He used his platform to promote local events and causes, often participating as a volunteer himself. Whether ringing the bell for the Salvation Army’s red kettle campaign or emceeing United Way fundraisers, Scott’s commitment to his community was unwavering.

March of Dimes WalkLeader
United Way FundraisersEmcee
Salvation Army’s Red Kettle CampaignVolunteer

Awards and Recognition

Scott’s contributions to radio and his community did not go unnoticed. In 2002, he received the prestigious Marconi Award for large market radio personality of the year, a testament to his impact on the industry.

2002Marconi AwardLarge Market Radio Personality of the Year

Personal Life and Final Years

Diagnosis and Advocacy

In August 2023, Jim Scott announced that he had been diagnosed with ALS, a progressive motor-neuron disease. Despite the diagnosis, Scott remained active in raising awareness and funds for ALS research, leading the Walk to Defeat ALS in September 2023.


Family and Legacy

Jim Scott is survived by his wife, Donna Hartman, and his sons, Scott Boland, Jim Boland, and Casey Boland. His wife shared in a Facebook post that Scott had “crossed over and is in the loving, welcoming embrace of his mom and dad, mine, his sister, and so many friends.

Family MembersRelationship
Donna HartmanWife
Scott BolandSon
Jim BolandSon
Casey BolandSon

Reflections from Colleagues

Mo Egger’s Tribute

Mo Egger, an ESPN 1530 radio host who worked with Scott at WLW from the late ’90s to the early 2010s, reflected on Scott’s genuine kindness and mentorship. Egger described Scott as a mentor, friend, advocate, and a sounding board, emphasizing how Scott took a genuine interest in helping others in their careers.

Quote: “He had a way of connecting with people that’s unlike anything I’ve ever seen. He was a friendly voice in the morning.”


Jim Scott’s passing marks the end of an era for Cincinnati radio. His voice, which greeted countless listeners each morning for 46 years, will be deeply missed. Scott’s legacy, however, extends beyond his broadcasting career. He leaves behind a legacy of community service, genuine kindness, and an enduring connection with his audience.

As we remember Jim Scott, we celebrate a life well-lived and a career that touched the lives of many. His contributions to radio and his community have left an indelible mark, and his memory will continue to inspire future generations of broadcasters.

Final Thought: Jim Scott’s journey from a high school senior in Binghamton to a Cincinnati radio legend is a testament to his dedication, passion, and the lasting impact one individual can have on a community. His legacy will live on in the hearts of those who had the privilege of listening to him each morning and those who were touched by his generosity and kindness.

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