Elmer Hildebrand (1935-)

Elmer Hildebrand

Year Born: 1935

Year of Induction: 1996

Pioneer – Member of CAB Hall of Fame

Hildebrand, Elmer (1937- )

Elmer Hildebrand’s entry to broadcasting coincided with the establishment of Southern Manitoba Broadcasting Co. Ltd.’s first radio station CFAM in Altona, Manitoba in 1957. Freshly out of Altona Collegiate, Elmer joined CFAM’s copy department. One year later he, became a sales representative. In 1961, he was appointed sales manager. As the company blossomed, building new stations and acquiring others in four provinces, so did Elmer’s career, to the point that he was appointed President and CEO of its successor — parent company, Golden West Broadcasting Ltd. He would later own the company.

Each of Golden West’s stations was community conscious – pledged to providing in depth exposure to the communities – to help them grow, and to be identified as important communities in their province.

Locally, in Altona, Elmer Hildebrand has served as a Director of the Mennonite Heritage Village Museum, and as a President of Altona Mall Development Ltd.

Industry-wise, Elmer was a Director of the Bureau of Broadcast Measurement (BBM), the Radio Marketing Board and Canadian Women in Radio & Television.

After serving as a director of the Canadian Association of Broadcasters for four years, Elmer was elected as Chair of the Association in 1989 and 1990. He was a two-time winner of the Western Association of Broadcasters’ “Broadcaster-of-the-Year” award (1978 and 1989), and, in 1991, was the recipient of the CAB Gold Ribbon – “Broadcasting Excellence for on-going service to the Community and the Broadcast Industry of Canada”.

In 1994, the Western Association of Broadcasters named him WAB Broadcaster of the Decade. In recognition of his significant contribution to Canada in Community Service, he received the 125th Commemorative Medal.

In 1996, Elmer Hildebrand was inducted into the CAB Broadcast Hall of Fame.

In 2008, Elmer Hildebrand became Chairman of Golden West;  Lyndon Friesen replaced him as  President.

In December 2012, in the New Year’s Honours list, Elmer Hildebrand was made a Member of the Order of Canada “….for his contributions to community service radio in Western Canada”.

In February 2015 it was announced that Elmer would be one of four individuals who would be honoured on June 2 by being inducted into the Manitoba Business Hall of Fame.

Written by Lyman Potts