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Is WCPO-TV's Taylor Nimmo related to TV pioneer Bill Nimmo?

Anderson Township native Taylor Nimmo joined WCPO-TV in June 2021.
Courtesy WCPO-TV
Anderson Township native Taylor Nimmo joined WCPO-TV in June 2021.

Bill Nimmo, Cincinnati's first TV star in the late 1940s, worked with Johnny Carson, Jackie Gleason and Jack Lemmon in New York on network TV shows in the 1950s.

Taylor Nimmo has heard the question before. A lot.

"Are you related to Bill Nimmo or Geoff Nimmo?"

"I have gotten this question many times," says Nimmo, a Turpin High School graduate hired last June by WCPO-TV.

Bill Nimmo wasCincinnati's first TV star when WLWT-TV started commercial televisionbroadcasting on Feb. 9, 1948. By 1951, he was in New York, where he worked on NBC, CBS, ABC and the old Dumont network until 1964. His son Geoff Nimmo was a popular DJ in the first years of WEBN-FM, and later WSAI-FM and WNOP-AM.

Both are deceased. And both are no relation to the Channel 9's Nimmo, she says.

"(It's) pretty crazy considering Nimmo isn’t a very common last name, but surprisingly, (I'm) no relation to Bill or Geoff Nimmo that I know of," says the Anderson Township native.

"My whole family is from Cincinnati, so I may have to look more into it to see if there’s any relation somewhere down the line."

Taylor was a sports intern the summer of 2017 at Sinclair's WKRC-TV during a break from studying at Ohio University's E.W. Scripps School of Journalism in Athens. After graduating in 2019, she was hired at Sinclair's WPBN-WGTU in Traverse City, Mich., as a multimedia journalist and weekend weather person. She joined Scripps' Channel 9 in June as a multimedia journalist and weather forecaster.

"It’s always been a dream of mine to report in my hometownsomeday. I am so glad to be back in Cincinnati," she says in her biography.

Bill Nimmo, who died in 2011 at age 93, did network TV shows based in New York in the 1950s with Johnny Carson, Jackie Gleason, Jack Lemmon, Garry Moore and bandleaders Paul Whiteman and Sammy Kaye. He also did live TV beer commercials as "Bill the bartender" during the Pabst Blue Ribbon Wednesday Night Fights in the 1950s.

Bill Nimmo, seen here in WMKV-FM's studio in Springdale, died in 2011.
Courtesy Media Heritage
Bill Nimmo, seen here in WMKV-FM's studio in Springdale, died in 2011.

He often talked about a pivotal career choice he made in 1958, when he quit as Carson's sidekick on ABC's Who Do You Trust? daytime game to star and host his own game show, For Love Or Money. Nimmo suggested that Carson hire Ed McMahon as his announcer – and McMahon followed Carson to The Tonight Show in 1962.

Nimmo went to Los Angeles in 1964 to do The Regis Philbin Show and other programs. He returned to Channel 5 in 1966 to co-host Be Our Guest with future wife Marian Spelman. Although he died 11 years ago, he's still living on the air at WMKV-FM (89.3) and WLHS-FM (98.9), which still air his WMKV Goes To The Pops at 11 p.m. Tuesday.

Geoff Nimmo, who died in 2020, played rock music on WEBN-FM from 1969 to 1978, then worked at competitors WSAI-FM and 96 Rock (WSKS-FM). He also managed WNOP-AM in the early 1980s, when the tiny Newport jazz station broadcast from the "Jazz Ark," huge old drums floating in the Ohio River. In 2008 he became a "sonic ambassador" on the WorldNetRadio steaming service.

John Kiesewetter, who has covered television and media for more than 35 years, has been working for Cincinnati Public Radio and WVXU-FM since 2015.