An amiable American character actor with Midwest sensibilities, Gordon Jump spent most of his career appearing on television. A native of Centerville, OH, he got his start on the radio at station WIBW, Topeka following studies in broadcasting and communication at Kansas State University. While at the station, Jump wore many hats, including the hat of WIB the Clown, the host of a local children's show. He later worked on radio in Ohio until 1963 when he decided to move to Hollywood to launch an acting career. Through the '60s and '70s, he appeared on numerous series including Green Acres. In 1978, Gordon Jump was selected to play sweet-natured, slightly befuddled radio station manager Arthur Carlson on the classic sitcom WKRP in Cincinnati. When the series ended in the early '80s, Jump returned to making guest appearances on other shows. Between 1991 and 1993, he reprised his role of Carlson on The New WKRP in Cincinnati. In 1997, Jump found steady work playing the "Lonely Repairman" in TV commercials for Maytag appliances. In addition to television, Jump also made occasional film appearances.
Biography by Sandra Brennan
- Best known as radio-station manager Arthur Carlson on WKRP in Cincinnati, he ironically began his career working as a radio-station employee.
- Played a character called Wib the Clown on a weekend children's program in Topeka, KS, in the early 1960s.
- First acting role of note on national TV was as a guest on the show Daniel Boone.
- Played the auctioneer in the 1972 film Conquest of the Planet of the Apes.
- Played a child molester on the sitcom Diff'rent Strokes.
- Began portraying Ol' Lonely, the Maytag repairman, in commercials and print advertisements in 1989.