Kat Riddler, Managing Editor
Paul Fey and Walt Jaschek are proud University of Missouri-St. Louis graduates and were also Editors-in-Chief of The Current Student Newspaper from 1974-1976. After earning their undergraduate degrees, they went on to create their own advertising firm Paul & Walt Worldwide in 1991. On March 17, they were inducted into the St. Louis Media Hall of Fame for the work at the firm.
“We enjoyed our time as Current Editors-in-Chief, but that’s not the work that led to the Hall of Fame – at least not directly,” explained Walt Jaschek, BA Speech Communications 1978.
Jaschek described his time at UMSL in the 1970s as a “[H]eady time of top-notch teachers, amazing creative opportunities, and colleagues obviously going places. It was a dress rehearsal for life, with lights and sound, though the sound was an 8-track tape.”
Although Jaschek was a writer, his favorite class at UMSL was figure drawing. He fondly remembered, “On the back of one of my sketches, the teacher wrote, ‘If you stop drawing, you’re crazy.’ Maybe I should have heeded that.”
Jaschek and Fey enjoyed working at the paper late into the night. Jaschek remembered, “Somebody recently called us kindred spirits, but I think we just had too much Dr. Pepper.”
Jaschek reminisced on his time as Editor-in-Chief in the mid-1970s and working the long nights at the paper on production days. He said, “It was a post-Watergate frenzy. Young Woodwards and Bernsteins of all genders, getting the story, getting the shot, smelling the rubber cement. (Innocently, though. Rubber cement was part of the production process.)”
Jaschek got a broad, deep, and applicable education while at UMSL that helped him after graduation. Fey later graduated from SIU Edwardsville. Both men remained friends but had separate career paths. After careers in advertising for Jaschek and Fey, they decided to combine their brands into Paul & Walt Worldwide.
Paul & Walt Worldwide specialized in funny radio commercials for national entertainment brands like CBS-TV, Warner Brothers, and 20th Century Fox. Many industry awards ensued: CLIOs, Addys, and more.
The company, now known as World Wide Wadio, still creates a wide variety of radio campaigns and has broadened into podcast production.
In total, 22 individuals were selected for the Hall of Fame this year by the St. Louis Media History Foundation, a non-profit organization that researches, collects, and archives “significant regional contributions to print, broadcast and digital media, advertising, and public relations.” More than 200 people attended a downtown gala at which the honors were bestowed.
Jaschek thought the ceremony was a blast. He said, “We played a couple of our funny spots. We also thanked our great clients over the years for demanding breakthrough ideas, championing them, and having the budgets to pay for them. ‘Keep doing that,’ we said.”