In 2002 Paul C. Schafer, president of Schafer won the NAB Engineering Achievement award for his pioneering work in Radio automation. He was a pioneer in early development of automation systems for radio stations. He founded Schaefer Electronics in 1953, Schafer International in 1969 and the Schafer Digital Project in 1986. For better or worse, he is recognized by almost everyone as the father of automation.
He personally designed and installed the first automation system at KGEE, Bakersfield, CA, in 1953. Testing continued that same year the first station to test out his invention was 960 KROW-AM (now KQKE-AM 960) in Oaklands. Following these succcesses NAB performed field tests with his equipment in 1955 to show the viability of unattended remote control for radio transmitters. As a result of the these tests the FCC amended their rules in 1957 to permit the remote control of all radio transmitters. 1230 is now KGEO a simulcast of KERN http://www.kernradio.com/
it seemed to all go down very fast. But Schafer had put his money where his mouth was. To prove it could work, Schafer bought and automated a radio station. The station, 1230 KDOT-AM in Reno, NV operated with a staff of three people. The manager did the selling, the engineer was also the announcer and one office manager ran everything else. 1230 is now KJFK a local talker. http://www.1230kjfk.com/