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News & Press: NABJ News

Police Confirm Identity of NABJ Member Ray Taliaferro

Monday, December 3, 2018  
Posted by: NABJ Staff
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Police Confirm Identity of NABJ Member Ray Taliaferro


Washington, D.C. (Dec. 3, 2018) -- The National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) says Paducah, Kentucky police have now confirmed that a body found Sunday afternoon is that of NABJ member and former radio host Ray Taliaferro.  Two teenagers found the body in a wooded area near the stadium about a mile from where he was last seen November 10.

NABJ President Sarah Glover said, “Ray is known as a pioneer among African American radio personalities.  His success over the years opened doors for many people who followed in his footsteps.”

Ray’s son released a statement that said, “The family appreciates the support and help we received in our search for Ray.  This is a devastating ending to our search for him over these past weeks.  The family is in the process of working with the police to learn the matters surrounding his death. At this time, we are processing this turn of events and ask for privacy as we work through our loss.”

Media reports say a flier had been distributed by the Paducah Police Department stating that the 79 year old was last seen Nov. 10 talking with the manager of the Mellow Mushroom pizza restaurant in Paducah.  The reports said the flier also stated Taliaferro may have been experiencing "disorientation and signs of dementia." 

Published reports have stated Taliaferro and his wife were in the Paducah area visiting land that his wife had recently inherited when Ray disappeared and later showed up at the pizza restaurant.

Taliaferro, who hosted his KGO radio overnight program from 1986 until 2011, also is credited with being the first black talk-show host at a major market radio station (New York City).  He was inducted into the NABJ Hall of Fame in 2011, and around that time had created the Ray Taliaferro Entrepreneurial Spirit Award where for several years was given to daring NABJ members seeking to start their own media company.

Taliaferro was heavily involved in community activities. He once served as president of the San Francisco NAACP and was also the first black member and president of the city’s Arts Commission. Taliaferro also served in various capacities with the San Francisco Greater Bay Area Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, including president as his transcendent personality helped the organization raise millions of dollars for research.


About the National Association of Black Journalists:
An advocacy group established in 1975 in Washington, D.C., NABJ is the largest organization for journalists of color in the nation, and provides career development as well as educational and other support to its members worldwide.

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