Herb Shaindlin
An Anchorage
Broadcasting Legend

by Michael R Dougherty

Herb as Dr Rodent

Herb as Dr Rodent

Herb Shaindlin handed my friend Bob Martin a small cardboard match from one of those flip-up match packs you carry in your pocket.

Then Herb told Bob to hold the match upside down with the match head facing the floor. Then he asked Bob to peel the cardboard stem apart and to hold each side between his thumb and fore finger on each hand like he was holding a tiny set of handle bars.

Now Herb asked Bob to clear his throat three times.

As Bob proceeded to do just that, he sounded a little faint and pathetic, and he was having a hard time keeping a straight face.

After Bob cleared his throat for the third time, Herb asked “What's the matter? Are you having trouble starting your Honda motor scooter?” Bob and I laughed at Herb's joke. And that was our introduction to Herb Shaindlin.

It was Saturday morning and Bob Martin and I had been standing in the studio of KTVA channel 11 in the McKinley Building in downtown Anchorage, Alaska. It was 1965, and we were both high school students who were working on KTVA's teen dance program, “The Varsity Show” which was hosted by Ron Moore at that time. Herb had been in the KTVA studio doing a public service program.

Following graduation, I began working full time at KTVA. I was assigned to work as a camera operator on a weekly 30-minute public service show called “Your Army Neighbor”, hosted by Herb Shaindlin, who was serving in the Army at that time. Herb was also working part-time doing the news for KFQD radio.

Some years later, I wrote and directed a short movie called “Double-Oh-Marcus; The Spy Who Flubbed Me”. Even as I was writing the screenplay, I had envisioned Herb Shaindlin as the villain, “Dr. Rodent”. He just had that look.

Happily, when I asked Herb if he would play the part in my movie, he said, “I'd love to.”

While working on the movie with Herb, he was a total professional. He knew his lines, offered suggestions, and had a lot of fun with his part.


Check out this fun movie trailer for

“Double-Oh-Marcus; The Spy Who Flubbed Me”

During the wrap party for the movie, I sat down with Herb, and we talked for about an hour. During that time, I got to know a very interesting Herb.

I learned that Herb Shaindlin had been a film editor on the 1956–1957 NBC TV series “Tales of the Bengal Lancers” a series I had watched and enjoyed with my family when I was a boy.

If you were in Anchorage when KHAR-TV (later KIMO and now KYUR) first signed on, you may remember that they ran monster movies on weekends. Those were hosted by a man in a Frankenstein monster mask. Occasionally, the host wore a black cap outfit. He also wore that costume in “Double-Oh-Marcus; The Spy Who Flubbed Me”.

Yes, the monster movie host was Herb Shaindlin… And he was having a blast.

Herb did so much in front of the camera, or behind a microphone in Anchorage. And we all have our own favorite memories of him.

One of mine was when Herb gave some stern, professional advice to a young videographer. I was standing there next to Herb at the time and when the young man walked away, Herb turned to me and asked “was I too hard on him?” My answer was “no Herb, he'll thank you later.”

Once, when I was directing a telethon to help raise money for Hope Cottage on KTVA, Herb came over from KIMO to do his bit. At the end of his presentation, Herb said, “isn't it about time to identify the station?” and with that, Herb spun around, and there on the back of his shirt was written the following: “KIMO Channel 13”.

Herb could hear me screaming in the KTVA control room. On his way out, Herb opened the door to the control room, stuck his head in and said, “got ya!”

We both had a good laugh.

Herb could always make me laugh, and he was always professional.

That's the Herb Shaindlin I remember.

What are your favorite memories of Anchorage's Herb Shaindlin?

Comments for Herb Shaindlin
An Anchorage
Broadcasting Legend

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by: Anonymous

He loved being called Herb.

But his drinking buddy Leroy from Leroy's Pancake Palace always called him Herbie.

Herb Shaindlin was at my Graduation
by: Erik

I used to listen to KFQD as a kid.

Herb would come on the radio in the evening and I would listen to him as I was going to bed.

Fast-forward to May 1989, and there he was, the keynote speaker for my high school graduation.

My Aunties and I Listened
by: Tara

Gosh, I remember vividly listening to Desperate and Dateless with my aunties who were 16 and 19.

I must have been 9.

We would laugh and laugh. Are there old recordings of those shows?

A Note from Anchorage Memories


We enjoyed your memory of Herb Shaindlin's Desperate and Dateless radio show.

There may be recordings out there, but we aren't aware of them.

Thank you


Working with Herb
by: Kristina "Kay" Fairchild (Goff)

I worked as the Arbitron director for KWHL & KBHR in the late 90s.

I got to know Herb around the station and was addicted to his show. He was a brilliant man and rather intimidating. I thought he was incredible.

For Christmas, he gave me a mug from his show, and it was my favorite for at least a decade until it broke.

Shortly before I left the company I was offered a job producing his show. What a remarkable offer and compliment that he had such confidence in my ability! I, however, was too insecure to accept. Herb was larger than life, and I was merely a mouse. I do regret not accepting that opportunity.

Out of my years in media, on air and behind the scenes, he was one of the people I enjoyed knowing the most. It was an honor and privilege to know him.

It saddens me to know he's gone. The world is a darker place without his light in it.

Herb Shaindlin
by: Penny Trow-Foreman

I would periodically call into Desperate and Dateless.

Originally, I called because he said no one in Anchorage made New York Cheesecake. So, I called and said I did and about a week later delivered one for him to the studio.

I'd call when he was having a dull evening, talking about whatever. Once he asked me to define some legal terms, which I had no trouble doing. He liked to be challenged.

So, it's probably no stretch that a gentlemen wrote a letter to the program about wanting to meet me. All because of Desperate and Dateless. Well, the board operator (Mike Ford) got hold of me, gave me a copy of the letter addressed to Desperate and Dateless and I ended up marrying that man who got to know me through talking with Herb.

Nobody said it would work, and we're still together 36 years later.

My Mother and Herb
by: Susan Krueger

My mother, Dorothy Kopy, was an ‘over the airwaves’ friend of Herb.

She was known as ‘Dorothy Older than Dirt’ on some radio stations for her ability to answer trivia questions.

She appreciated Herb’s New York edginess as she herself was a New Yorker.

When my mother passed away, Herb sent me a short tribute to her which was read at her service.

My favorite line was when he wrote that "many people would call in to his talk shows that they were funny, but Dorothy truly was funny!"

Good man, Mr. Shaindlin.

Herb Shaindlin An Anchorage Broadcasting Legend
by: Marvin Parker

I only saw him in person on a plane flight.

My memories are when I listen to him on the news with Reuben Gaines, on KIMO TV. and on the radio on Desperate and Dateless. I bet he had fun with that program.

KFQD - Herb Shaindlin
by: Anonymous

Desperate and Dateless.

Channel 13 commentaries. He was great.

Herb Made Me Miss My High School Reunion
by: Rick Everson

In July 1987, I was building my cabin about 5 miles Southwest of the Igloo on the Parks Highway.

I was hooked on Herb's evening talk show and absolutely had to stop working every evening in time to get to my truck to hear the program.

I don't recall what time the show started, but it was well before it got too dark to cut wood and hammer nails.

Over the course of three weeks, I lost at least three days because of Herb.

As I result, I had to reschedule my flight to Virginia to attend my 10-year-High School reunion.

It was worth it.

People Remembered
by: Anonymous

Herb, Marcus, Ruben, Theda and Norma, all remembered for the wonderful and entertaining people they were.

Herb Memories
by: Tony Rice

I found Herb on the air soon after I moved to Alaska in 1982.

I'm going to guess his "public opinion hotline" show was on KFQD. It was awesome. It was a place where you could express your opinion, your frustration, your likes and your dislikes - talk about the subject of the moment, or make up your own.

Early on I just listened, but I started calling in occasionally, when I thought what I had to say was smart enough.

I must have been good enough because the first time I called him I said what I had to say (I'll never forget the call.) He asked me how old I was, and I told him I was 13. He told me that he didn't much care for kids calling in, but that I was welcome to call again. I think this was 1984 or so.

Fast-forward to 1988 or '89. Alaska State Trooper Colonel Robert Ghent was retiring. I was a student trooper at the time and was invited by Lieutenant (later Captain) John Meyers to attend the retirement party. (I was underage still, but cops have some fun at parties, let me tell you.)

Herb spoke at Colonel Ghent's send off, and I got to talk to him a bit as he mingled.

There wasn't even 100 people at that particular event, so I got some time to speak with him. He was a funny man, but straight. That was my take. Someone that knew him can tell me if I am wrong, but he did not suffer fools gladly.

Last story.

Fast-forward to '95 or '96. I was a checker at Carrs Huffman and I would see Herb regularly.

The first time he came through my line, I re-introduced myself with something like, "Mr. Shaindlin, I have not seen you since Colonel Ghent's retirement party."

He didn't BS me, he (said) he had no recollection of me. He did, however, say hi to me at the store and even said my name a time or two (I did wear a name tag.)

He was quite a cool guy in my mind.

"Thank you dad, that's our theme..."

Herb is a memory for me to never be forgotten. I wanted to say it loud, and I don't mind being long-winded because someone will enjoy reading this, if only his family.

Thank You
by: Robin Shaindlin Billiet

Thanks for this really fun article.

It’s got several stories about my Dad I’ve never heard!

He and Marcus and Ruben were so young.

He loved this state, and he’d be so happy with this article.

Thanks for the Smile!
by: Cindy Pendleton

I knew Herb from KHAR days.

Neal Thomas, (aka, Curt Nolan on the late night slot) was a dear friend, who introduced me to both Herb and Ruben Gaines.

My son, Justin also worked with Herb at KENI radio in the late ‘80s.

Your memories totally coincide with mine... he was a wonderful mentor to my son, who went on to a several year career in broadcasting in Montana where he now lives.

Herb truly was a broadcasting legend.

Thanks for the smile!

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