Ridge Harlan, former KUBA owner, dies
Ridge Harlan, former owner of KUBA-AM, died Monday. He was 88.
Harlan bought the station in 1983 along with KXCL-FM and owned them as principal of Harlan Communications until 2002 when a series of sales and mergers took place.
His son, Bob Harlan, is general manager of Yuba City-based KUBA-AM, which was started in 1948.
But Ridge Harlan was perhaps best known for his long career in business.
As creative director for Batten, Barton, Durstine and Osborn Inc., of San Francisco, he helped secure the radio sponsorships needed to bring the San Francisco Giants to San Francisco in 1958.
He was also known as a turnaround consultant. He became CEO at some of the companies including Barnes-Hind Pharmaceuticals, later bought by Revlon; and Velo Blind Inc. He was assistant dean for five years at Stanford University's Graduate School of Business.
Bob Harlan recalled that his father had high standards for honesty and integrity, and valued good communication.
“He's walked away from many things in the past that would have brought him lots of money, but weren't on the up and up,” Bob Harlan said.
At one point, Ridge Harlan became involved in a company that had poor communications. He took the doors off executives' offices, and set up his desk in the middle of everything so he could chat with people.
Ridge Harlan lived in Yuba City from 2002 to 2003 and was a weekly visitor to the radio station during other times, Bob Harlan said. During the 1990s, he put on advertising seminars for local clients.
Ridge Harlan particularly enjoyed fly fishing at his summer home in Ennis, Mont. He wintered in Carefree, Ariz.
Appeal-Democrat reporter John Dickey can be reached at 749-4711. You may e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.