Vale Vaughan Harvey

Legendary radio broadcaster and trainer Vaughan Harvey has passed away.

Vaughan ran the Vaughan Harvey Radio School in Adelaide for decades and saw hundreds of budding radio stars pass through his doors.

As News Director of 5KA in the 1970s, he was given the additional job of running the School of Radio for the South Australian Broadcast Network. He later went on to own the business.

Vaughan also worked at 5AD, presenting the Cardwell Harvey News Report and at 5AA during the Good Music period.

He began his radio career at the age of twelve, doing some advertisements on 2BH Broken Hill, and later moved to Adelaide to continue his radio career. Vaughan was encouraged by Bob Fricker from 5AD and gained ‘boy parts’ in radio plays at the ABC.

In 1951 he started at radio 5KA as a ‘turntable boy’ and over 26 years rose through the ranks to announcer, program director and managerial rolls.

The picture below is contributed by Ian Wright, who snapped it in 2013, showing Vaughan (left) with Cruise1323 Breakfast announcer, John Dean. Ian and John worked together at 5KA between 1974-78.

Ian, who now works at 5MU/Power FM Victor Harbour, contributed these memories of Vaughan:

I arrived at ‘The Australian Rock Station 5KA’ in the winter of 1974, fresh from an on air & sales position at 3LK Horsham. To say I was rapt to be now working for the country’s leading and most innovative commercial rock station was an understatement. I knew the air names John Vincent, Dave D. Whitcomb, Barry Bissell, Dave Barnett, Andy Reid etc. and I also knew the name and had heard the quality, ‘ballsy’ voice of one Vaughan Harvey, 5KA’s News Editor. No Internet back then, so I had never seen the man.
I met Vaughan on Day 1 at Reception. I heard this magnificent voice echoing down the 43 Franklin Street studio corridor, heading toward our meeting point and (typically) had formed my vision of this tall, clean shaven, muscular figure, with thick, wavy, brownish hair. As is more often the case, apart from the voice, my physical blueprint of the man was completely wrong. He was lean, balding with a dark beard and of average height.
Vaughan Harvey was NOT average in the radio stakes ! As a leader, motivator, talent and team player he was at the top of his game.

He leaves behind a loving family, many friends including listeners who never met him, an impressive talent bank of trained radio professionals around Australia and those of us privileged to have had Vaughan as a work colleague and friend. I can hear him now as I type saying in his superbly rich voice – “Ian Wroit, noin ta foiv on Foiv K A”, a dig at my youthful influence from Sydney’s 2SM (then) style of announcing “pumpin’ out the hits”.

Thanks for the great memories and friendship, Vaughan. South Australian radio in particular has lost a giant of the industry.


Vaughan is fondly remembered particularly in the South Australian Radio Industry and by the hundreds of students he trained for careers in radio.

Funeral details will be posted here when they are known.