Chatting with PRT's Steve Clem

May 28, 2020

Public Radio Tulsa bids farewell today to Steve Clem. Steve is retiring after 11 years as our Operations Director, and a lifetime of work in this crazy, wonderful world of radio. We didn't let him leave without peppering him with questions, of course.

Public Radio Tulsa:  Steve, you're retiring from Public Radio Tulsa after more than 10 years as our Operations Director.  But you've worked in radio your whole life.

Steve Clem:  11 years at Public Radio Tulsa...longer than any other job in my 40-year broadcasting career.  I have a colorful license plate for a time in Sacramento, Seattle, Albuquerque, and Salt Lake City.  But this area is home!

PRT:  In fact, you used to work with our former News Director, John Durkee, and former reporter, Marshall Stewart, right?  

SC: John, Marshall & I started out together at OSU studying Radio/TV/Film...maybe “studying” is too strong of a word...but we were all together at the beginning of our careers and also the last decade of them, which is kind of cool. 

PRT:  You've written the book, Tulsa's KAKC Radio: The Big 97, and have produced an audio special about that late, great station.  Got any more books you want to write?

SC:  I am starting two book projects: The first is Tulsa Movie Theaters.  We got short-changed!  All of Tulsa’s beautiful downtown and neighborhood movie theaters are gone! It’s a subject I’ve always been interested in.  If you’d like to share your Tulsa movie memories with me, I’ll have my TU email for a while longer: I'm also working on Tulsa Route 66 Motels. This is a harder subject because there were upwards of 50 motels along 11thStreet and Southwest Blvd during Tulsa’s Route 66 heyday. If you have a personal link to any of that history, email me:

PRT:   Any parting thoughts as you walk out the door?

SC: I have always been proud to tell people that I work at Public Radio Tulsa...where the level of dedication, professionalism, and frankly integrity is so high.  I will miss being part of that effort and this team. 

We'll miss you too, Steve!  Enjoy your well-earned retirement.  (Follow Steve's next adventures on Facebook!)