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Charles J. "Charlie" Brotman (born December 30, 1928[1][2]) is an American public relations specialist and public address announcer, known for his presentation of U.S. presidential inaugural parades.

Brotman has been behind the microphone for every inaugural parade in Washington, DC, since 1957, when Dwight D. Eisenhower was sworn in for his second term.[3] Barack Obama's second inauguration in 2013 was the 15th consecutive ceremony that Brotman has announced, and his 16th overall.[4]

Prior to taking on his inaugural duties, Brotman had been the stadium announcer at Griffith Stadium, home of the Washington Senators baseball team.[5] Brotman noted that on Opening Day 1956, Eisenhower was at the ballpark to throw out the ceremonial first pitch. Later that year, a White House staffer called Brotman and said Eisenhower was impressed with his work, and he wanted Brotman for the inauguration.[6]

The staffer asked Brotman, "Will you charge a fee? Because our parade budget is very minimal." Brotman responded, "No, as a matter of fact, to be honest, I'd pay you for the honor."[7]

During the presidency of George W. Bush, Brotman also served as the announcer at tee ball games on the South Lawn of the White House.[8]

Brotman, the son of Russian immigrants, grew up in northeast Washington, DC, graduated from McKinley Technology High School and studied at the University of Maryland.[2] He served in the U.S. Navy from 1946 to 1948,[9] then attended the National Academy of Broadcasting. Brotman was one of the academy's students selected by the organizers of Harry S. Truman's inauguration in 1949 to broadcast the first-ever televised inaugural ceremony.[2][10]

Following his graduation from the academy, Brotman worked as a disc jockey and sports announcer in Orlando, Florida.[3][6] A 1956 meeting with Senators' owner Calvin Griffith led to him returning to his hometown of Washington to take the Senators announcing assignment. He later became the team's promotions director as well.[1]

In the 1960s, Brotman started his own public relations firm, Brotman|Winter|Fried, specializing in sports promotions.[11] (His firm was acquired by Sage Communications in 2011.[4]) He continued to announce on Opening Day for the Senators each year until the team moved to Texas following the 1971 season. When the Washington Nationals relocated to the city in 2005, Brotman returned to his Opening Day duties.[12]


  1. ^ a b White, Joseph (2005-01-22). "Brotman's Tales: A basement full of Washington's baseball past". Tuscaloosa News (Tuscaloosa AL). Retrieved 2013-01-21. 
  2. ^ a b c Jaffe, Harry (2008-01-24). "Brotman's Birthday Celebrated by Many". Washingtonian (Washington DC). Retrieved 2013-01-21. 
  3. ^ a b Kunkle, Fredrick (2013-01-20). "Inaugural parade’s announcer knows how to call ‘em as voice of former Washington Senators ballclub". Washington Post (Washington DC). Retrieved 2013-01-21. 
  4. ^ a b "Sage Communications' Senior Advisor Charlie Brotman to Serve as the President's Announcer for the 57th Inaugural Parade". Sage Communications. 2013-01-14. Retrieved 2013-01-21. 
  5. ^ Somanader, Tanya (2013-01-16). "Meet Charlie Brotman, the voice of the inaugural parade". The Presidential Inauguration Committee 2013. Retrieved 2013-01-21. 
  6. ^ a b Hoffman, Allison (2013-01-18). "Inaugural Parade’s Jewish Voice". Tablet. Retrieved 2013-01-21. 
  7. ^ Stephey, M.J. (2009-01-20). "Q&A: Inaugural Parade Announcer". Time. Retrieved 2013-01-21. 
  8. ^ "White House South Lawn Tee Ball". The White House (archived). 2006-07-30. Retrieved 2013-01-21. 
  9. ^ Jaffe, Harry (2013-01-18). "Charlie Brotman to Announce His 15th Inaugural Parade Monday". Washingtonian (Washington DC). Retrieved 2013-01-21. 
  10. ^ Leshan, Bruce (2013-01-20). "Charlie Brotman Has Been The Voice Of the Inaugual Parade Since 1949". WUSA-TV 9 (Washington DC). Retrieved 2013-01-21. 
  11. ^ "Bio: Charlie Brotman, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board". Brotman|Winter|Fried. Retrieved 2013-01-21. 
  12. ^ Seidel, Jeff (2005-04-01). "Brotman is back behind the microphone". Washington Nationals. Retrieved 2013-01-21. 

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charlie_Brotman — Please support Wikipedia.
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73 news items

Washington Post
Sun, 03 Aug 2014 15:02:59 -0700

At the end of every message he reads to the stadium crowd at William H.G. FitzGerald Tennis Center, Charlie Brotman says “thank you!,” and you can almost hear him beaming from the Charlie Brotman Press Box when he says it. He's got a voice that ...
Daily Beast
Thu, 17 Jan 2013 01:49:45 -0800

Charlie Brotman, a gregarious and loquacious 85-year-old, began his voluntary stint announcing Harry Truman's inauguration in 1949, and he will be back on his perch atop the glass-enclosed media complex directly across from the White House for Barack ...
Washington Post
Mon, 21 Jan 2013 11:27:33 -0800

Washington native and PR executive Charlie Brotman will continue his 63-year streak of announcing the inaugural parade on Monday. President Barack Obama's second inaugural parade will be Brotman's 16th consecutive time in the announcer's chair. () ...
Tablet Magazine
Fri, 18 Jan 2013 04:18:49 -0800

But there will be one Jewish constant to Monday's proceedings: Charlie Brotman, a retired sports announcer who has been the voice of every inaugural parade since President Eisenhower's second in 1957. “The Secret Service says, that Charlie Brotman, he ...
KQED (blog)
Tue, 15 Jan 2013 09:18:33 -0800

Longtime Inaugural Parade Announcer Charlie Brotman (Scott Shafer/KQED) Washington is still a town of tradition, and early Sunday morning, thousands of police, soldiers, Marines and others turned out to rehearse one: the Inaugural Parade. There were ...
Washingtonian.com (blog)
Fri, 30 Jan 2009 11:11:34 -0800

For half a century, Charlie Brotman has been a voice of Washington: Whether you were at a Washington Senators game, the Legg Mason tennis classic, or the presidential inaugural parade, chances are good that the voice booming over the PA system was ...
Washingtonian.com (blog)
Fri, 18 Jan 2013 10:00:00 -0800

Charlie Brotman mounts the white wooden steps of the viewing stand facing the White House to check out the perch from which he will announce Monday's inaugural parade. “I used to announce the parade from the roof,” he tells me. “Back then I would ...
AARP News (blog)
Wed, 16 Jan 2013 09:45:07 -0800

You can forgive Charlie Brotman for not remembering much about the first inaugural parade he worked as an announcer. It was 64 years ago. Brotman was studying at the National Academy of Broadcasting in Washington, D.C., when President Truman's ...

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