On December 12, longtime Michigan broadcaster Bill Thompson, surrounded by family, friends and colleagues, celebrated a 40-year radio career with a retirement party in Lansing.
Thompson’s career began as a weekend announcer and DJ at WFYC-AM (Alma) in 1975 and after graduation from Central Michigan University in 1978, moved on to WSOO-AM (Sault Ste. Marie) as Production Director. In late 1979, he moved on to become Program Director at WJOR-AM (South Haven). A year later, Thompson moved to Lansing an afternoon news anchor job at WJIM Radio. In 1983, he was promoted to Capitol Correspondent and joined the Capitol Press Corp for WJIM until the station was sold in 1985. In 1986, Thompson joined WITL-AM/FM in Lansing (as “Bill Perry”), eventually taking over as News Director.
In 1991, Thompson then worked as a news reporter at WION-AM (Ionia).
He is best known throughout the state for his 23-year tenure as a statewide network news reporter/anchor/editor, beginning in 1992 with the Michigan News Network/Great Lakes Media Group. Thompson remained with the network, renamed the Michigan Radio Network through a series of owners including Full Circle Broadcasting, Saga Communications and Learfield Communications.
He also served as a member of the CMU Broadcast and Cinematic Arts Alumni Advisory Board for 14 years and has helped mentor BCA students since his graduation nearly 40 years ago.
Bill and his wife Debbie reside in Mason.