Joe DeNardo

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Joe DeNardo
Born
Joseph William DeNardo

(1930-11-27)November 27, 1930
DiedJune 15, 2018 (aged 87)
Occupation
  • television personality
  • weather forecaster

Joseph William DeNardo (November 27, 1930 – June 15, 2018) was an American meteorologist best known for his work at WTAE-TV in Pittsburgh.[1] He was known for his 1994 campaign, "Joe Said It Would."[2] DeNardo resided in Moon Township, Pennsylvania with his wife of almost 60 years. When he retired in 2005, after 45 years on the air, he enjoyed "iconic" status among Pittsburghers.[3]

Biography[edit]

Early life[edit]

Joe DeNardo was born and raised in Martins Ferry, Ohio[4] and attended Wheeling Central Catholic High School in Wheeling, West Virginia. While at Wheeling Central, DeNardo averaged a 4.0 GPA. In addition, Joe was an outstanding basketball player, making the All-State team both his Junior and Senior year. His nickname on the court was "The Flash" due to his speed and quickness on the court.[citation needed]

DeNardo graduated from Duquesne University in 1952 with a major in Mathematics and Physics.[5] He was president of the Alpha Phi Delta fraternity. In 1953 he received a Masters in Meteorology from The University of Chicago.[5]

He was an avid model railroadist.[6]

Career[edit]

DeNardo started his career with the United States Air Force, providing weather reports to authorities.[4] DeNardo served four years in the Air Force, achieving the rank of Commander of the weather detachment at the Greater Pittsburgh Air Force Base.[4] He was honorably discharged in 1956.

In 1957 he opened DeNardo and McFarland Weather Services with his friend David G. McFarland, whom he met in the Air Force. "DeNardo and McFarland", located at the Allegheny County Airport, would sell weather forecasts to the Pittsburgh corporate aviation community (17 clients including Westinghouse, Rust Eng. and ALCOA), private aviation services, gas and electric utilities, construction and local radio stations. The company also had a contract with Allegheny County, Pennsylvania to consult on air quality issues.[7] Many of the US Weather Services (NWS)personnel located at the airport would work part-time for DeNardo & McFarland, one flight down.

KDKA-Channel 2 hired DeNardo in the late 1950s to brief its on-air weather personalities before every newscast. Eventually, Channel 2 managers asked him to do a few forecasts for the TV station's sibling radio station, KDKA-1020 AM. KDKA Radio started DeNardo broadcast career in 1957. DeNardo and KDKA reached an agreement where he would broadcast his weather reports on television. KDKA became one of the first stations in the country with a "real meteorologist" as a part of the programming and DeNardo began his regional fame and celebrity status.[citation needed] After a new manager took over, DeNardo left KDKA, citing the unpleasant atmosphere.[4] DeNardo landed at WTAE-TV in 1969, bringing his news anchor partner Paul Long with him to WTAE, continuing their often sardonic banter when Long would introduce DeNardo for the weather segment of the news. Joe was so popular that his presence at WTAE was the focus of an advertising campaign.[8]

DeNardo retired from WTAE-TV on January 1, 2005. He remained a presence on the station for fund-raising efforts, and continued to deliver his annual "Winter Weather Forecast" on WTAE-TV until 2009.

During the 2014 North American cold wave, the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review sought out DeNardo's opinion on the current state of weather reporting, nearly a decade after his retirement.[9]

Community work[edit]

DeNardo was known for his charitable work for the community. Keeping the spirit of youth in mind, DeNardo would make school visits every Wednesday "with the exception of holidays." He would fly into the school via helicopter and present an assembly for the kids. Traditionally, in return, DeNardo would receive a cake from the faculty of the schools.[citation needed] Along with school visits, DeNardo gave back to the community through The Salvation Army and his own actions. WTAE-TV would host two charitable events each year that donated to The Salvation Army, the Project Bundle-Up Auction (which continues to this day), and the Bundle-Up telethon.[10] DeNardo hosted both of these events.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Owen, Rob (20 August 1998). "A Sunny Forecast Joe Denardo Rests At Home, Expects To Be Back On The Air Sept. 30". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. p. E5. Retrieved 31 August 2010.
  2. ^ "WTAE Flashback: Joe Said It Would". WTAE-TV. November 30, 2012. Retrieved May 19, 2013.
  3. ^ Rutkoski, Rex (September 19, 2011). "DeNardo, Kudzma downplay their forecasting roles". Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Retrieved May 19, 2013. During that time, they were the weather for many Pittsburghers. Today, the two meteorologists downplay their icon status.
  4. ^ a b c d Leonard, Vince (November 22, 1968). "DeNardo its Over CLimate At Channel 2". The Pittsburgh Press. Retrieved May 18, 2013.
  5. ^ a b "Joe DeNardo: WTAE, chief meteorologist". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. February 9, 2003. Retrieved May 19, 2013.
  6. ^ Fanning, Win (June 13, 1978). "The Weatherman's Railroad". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Retrieved May 19, 2013.
  7. ^ "DeNardo Backs Duquesne Light's Better-Air Plans". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. February 27, 1973. Retrieved May 19, 2013.
  8. ^ "DeNardo's The Name. Weather is his game!". The Pittsburgh Press. February 24, 1970. Retrieved May 19, 2013.
  9. ^ Heyl, Eric (January 8, 2014). "Heyl: Joe said it would ... be great if we cooled it". Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Retrieved January 9, 2014.
  10. ^ "Arc to Honor Joe Denardo". Observer-Reporter. March 1, 1999. Retrieved May 19, 2013.