Lee Knudsen Was Much More Than A Pleasant Voice

For more than three decades, Leland “Lee” Knudsen was a familiar voice to radio and television listeners in the Puget Sound area.
Classical-music lovers could depend on him for tidbits of background about composers and compositions. And when it came to old movies, he made a point of noting who had performed in what. “That’s what made him popular as a radio and TV announcer,” said his wife, Nancy Knudsen, who also has made a career in the broadcast industry. Mr. Knudsen, a longtime Tacoma resident, died Saturday (Oct.16) from complications of Parkinson’s disease and diabetes at the Tacoma Lutheran Home and Retirement Community in north Tacoma. He had lived there for a short time after hospitalization. He was 70. Mr. Knudsen was a 1946 graduate of Ballard High School. In 1950, he got a degree in communications, specializing in radio broadcasting, from the University of Washington, but continued graduate studies and served as night manager for the university’s public-radio station, KUOW-FM. A photo showing him seated at a radio console hung on the wall outside KUOW’s studio in the UW’s School of Communications building for more than a decade, said his wife. Mr. Knudsen went on to work at radio stations KISW-FM in Seattle and KTAC-AM in Tacoma, and he was classical-music host at KXA-AM in Seattle. “He had a vast knowledge of the classical repertoire,” his wife said. He was newscaster and program director at KTW-AM and was one of the few people to work at KING-AM and -FM at the same time. He worked as jazz host at KBVU in Bellevue, and returned to Tacoma to work at KTAC-AM and -FM in 1967. After his radio career, he became involved in television, working as booth and news announcer at KTNT-TV and continuing when it became KSTW (Channel 11), in Tacoma. “Everyone called him the voice because you never saw his face on camera,” said his wife. “He did voice-overs and worked behind the scenes. He was only on camera to do a Christmas greeting during the holidays.” At KSTW, his was the voice that announced the afternoon movie, said his wife. He retired in 1986…

Also see Victor Stredicke Finds An Old KJR Schedule

Author: Jason Remington

Creator, Admin, & Editor of QZVX, former broadcaster at KTOY FM/Tacoma, KVAC/Forks , KDFL/Sumner, KTTX & KWHI FM/Brenham (TX), KONP/Port Angeles, KBAM/Longview, KJUN/Puyallup, KRPM FM/Tacoma, KAMT/Tacoma, KASY/Auburn, KBRD FM/Tacoma, KTAC/Tacoma, KMTT FM/Tacoma, and KOOL FM/Phoenix. -- Airchecks

2 thoughts on “Lee Knudsen Was Much More Than A Pleasant Voice

  1. I met Lee Knudsen at KTW in 1963. His future wife Nancy handled the front desk. Hal Links was the other announcer and Art Jacobsen was the manager/sales person. That’s the whole staff other than a weekend fill. In early 1964, the station was sold and switched to Top 40.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Some comments may be held for moderation. (New users)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.