J. Woodworth, Radio Innovator
James Woodworth’s business, automating radio stations, put disc jockeys and engineers out of their jobs, so he helped them find new ones, according to his wife.
“You wouldn’t believe how many jobs he got people,” said Carola Woodworth, his wife of 30 years.
Mr. Woodworth, of Fort Lauderdale, died Tuesday, three years after he was diagnosed with cancer. He was 62.
Born in Washington, D.C., and raised in suburban Maryland, he did not finish college, but went to work for a television repair business while still a teenager and eventually ran it.
One of his grateful clients was Muriel Humphrey, wife of Sen. (later Vice President) Hubert Humphrey. The Woodworths met at the Maryland business, where Carola Woodworth was the office manager.
In 1974 the couple relocated to Fort Lauderdale. The self-taught Mr. Woodworth started his own business, Control Technologies Inc., serving the broadcast industry by developing techniques to run radio stations single-handedly.
“He just liked the electronics end of it,” his wife said. The Woodworths closed the business about eight years ago, when Mr. Woodworth retired for health reasons.
After that he indulged his enthusiasm for classic cars. He restored vintage muscle cars and a 1935 Packard, and last summer took part with a friend in a road rally from Jacksonville to Monterey, Calif. They got as far as Springfield, Mo., where a water pump ruptured, ending the rally early for them.
Mr. Woodworth also loved animals. His menagerie at times included dogs, cats, birds, raccoons and an iguana.
Instead of flowers, the family requests donations to the Humane Society of Broward County, 2070 Griffin Road, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33312.
In addition to his wife, Mr. Woodworth is survived by a son, James, of Boise, Idaho; a stepdaughter, Tina Bennett, of Syracuse, N.Y.; a brother, Robert, of Clayton, Mo., and two grandchildren.
Ron Crider says:
Jim and his crew, Gary Flynn and Doug Holland were super engineers. Over the years we did many projects together. Jim was a super salesman and great idea guy. Jim and his wife Carola ran our company Broadcast Automation Associates for a year.