a Hall of Fame photojournalist—and mentor
By John Greiner, 1993 Inductee
Oliver Murray, the first African-American photojournalist in Oklahoma City, was much more than a television news photographer.
Murray, who who worked for Oklahoma City’s WKY, now known as KFOR-TV, was a political reporter and tutor for young television reporters whom he accompanied to the Oklahoma State Capitol, often on their first assignments there.
The Capitol can be imposing to young reporters making their first news conference involving politics and armed only with news clippings on what would be the subject.
If Murray noticed the young reporter from his station struggling, he would ask the question himself where tell the reporter what to ask.
Murray was up to date on all politics, local and national.
The smarter reporters assigned with him learned early to listen to his suggestions.
During his 38-year career, Murray held many positions, including chief news photographer and operations manager.
More than 50 years ago when we met, he was not only the photographer. He also filed stories at WKY Radio.
He, Bob Dotson, and George Wesley teamed to produce a documentary on black history that won three Emmys. Titled Through the Looking Glass Darkly, it ran in a series on WKY Television.
Murray also was instrumental in starting the local chapter of the Association of Black Journalists.
Oliver Murray was inducted into the Oklahoma Journalism Hall of Fame in 2013.