Mark Pennell


Mark Pennell is our somewhat colorful, morning and mid-day personality. He joined the staff of WKSU in the early fall of 1996. Since arriving he has claimed “Announcer of the Year” for 1997 in public radio. Previously, he could have been heard on WOSU in his native city, Columbus. He also is a voice-over talent in radio and TV. Prior experience has come from other radio stations in the Midwest region. He studied at Ohio State University in Communications. Mark’s family of two sons, a daughter and wife, Amy (an artist), reside in a historical home in north Kent. The character and history of the house is wonderful, but the house needs a new furnace (the old one reminds him of Marianne, the steam shovel from a favorite children’s book), and Mark spent his whole summer last year painting and repairing the house. Oh, well, it comes with the territory. He still likes it. Mark is an active member in his church, Riverwood Community Chapel. His hobbies are: golf (he stinks at it), and cars (his dream-car, a Mini Cooper is only driven when the weather is good which is why he only puts about 5,000 miles on it a year). History is a special hobby for Mark, as one could tell by listening to his show. Mark’s favorite parts of his show are the facts and amusing tidbits on the composers that he shares with listeners. He feels this brings a sense of connection and humility to classical music that is greatly needed, so that everyone can enjoy it. A brief bio on Mark’s favorites: Composer: Depends on the time of day Piece: Schubert’s “Unfinished” symphony Artist: Peter Serkin or Michael Murray Color: Green or red Food: Steak, “Dump” (a concoction of maple sausage, hashbrowns, eggs, and cheese wrapped in a soft tortilla shell) and Graters ice cream (Mint Chocolate Chip) From Mark—“Moving to Kent has been one of the best things I have ever done. It’s been a very good experience for me and my family. The people are genuinely nice and really interested in listening to WKSU. The countryside is truly beautiful too. Northeast Ohio has a wonderful support for the arts and I enjoy being in that company.”

Ways to Connect

On this date in 1913, a Swedish engineer patented "the greatest thing to ever happen to pants." And in 1964, Disney unveiled what later would be considered one of the greatest films of all-time.

On this date in 1895, Niagara Falls' power was harnessed for the first time. And in 1980, a bomb discovered in a Lake Tahoe resort created a carnival-like atmosphere.

On this date in 1899, the first ship-to-shore wireless message was sent. And in 1904, a patent was granted to a product making it easier to get around in the snow.

On this date in 1865, William Shephard was issued a patent for a product we use daily. And in 2018, a 90,000-year-old bone fragment discovered raised eyebrows.

On this date in 1888, William Seward Burrows was issued four patents for this technological advancement. And in 1947, 2,500 people headed to Williamsport, PA for what has turned into an annual event.

On this date in 1866, President Andrew Johnson issued a major proclamation. And in 1920, the first radio station licensed by the federal government went on the air. 

On this date in 1839, a new process was released in Paris that revolutionized photography. And in 1909, the first race was held on a test track that would become home to one of the world's most famous car races.

This is an important date in the development of the modern rollercoaster. And a sad one in the history of baseball.  

Follow the yellow brick road to a movie classic that debuted on this date in 1939.  And in 1945, VJ-Day signaled the end of World War II.

It was a first for beauty pageants on this day in 1908. And in 1962, the largest cash robbery of all time occurred in Plymouth, MA.   

An earthquake caused catastrophic destruction on this date 151 years ago. Just four years ago, a stolen painting found its way home.  

Today marks an important date in the history of a major American metropolis known as the windy city. And hear a historic recording from Thomas Edison that marks a discovery he made on this date in 1877.

On this date in 1944, a beloved character made his debut to the world. And in 1974, Richard Nixon resigned, making him the first U.S. President to do so.

On this date in 1876, Thomas Edison was once again back at it with another invention. And in 1898, a "mistake" turned into a product that's still sold today.

On this date in 1782, George Washington created a new award for military merit. And in 1912, Teddy Roosevelt and William Taft had a memorable split over the presidency.

On this date in 1945, the first atomic bomb was dropped.

On this date in 1861, President Lincoln signed into law a first-ever tax of its kind. And in 1914, a new traffic signal made its way into the world close to home.

On this date in 1893, a breakfast cereal debuted that remains popular today. And in 1957, a commerical building was the first to be heated by something other than the conventional way.

On this date in 1790, the first-ever patent was issued in the United States. And in 1964, a new device helped push the exploration of the moon move forward.

On this date in 1945, the USS Indianapolis experienced a tragic fate. And in 1956, the official national motto of the United States was approved.

On this date in 1927, a device considered a major medical breakthrough was installed at a hospital for the first time. And in 1928, test footage of a cartoon was released that would change the world forever.

On this date in 1775, the second continental congress established a new mail system. And in 1990, President George H.W. Bush signed a significant new bill into law.

On this date in 1866, future President Ulysses S. Grant got a very special appointment. And in 1916, a very tragic incident occurred in Cleveland.

On this date in 1880, a first in regards to power took place in Grand Rapids, Michigan. And in 1911, the very first Major League Baseball All-Star Game was played.

On this date in 1904, the St. Louis World's Fair was the site for a very popular treat to be born. And in 1973, President Nixon addressed the nation regarding Watergate.