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Ralph B. Rogers Papers

Abstract

Title:
Ralph B. Rogers Papers
Author/Creator:
Rogers, Ralph B.
Collection number:
NPBA 91-236
Size:
2.00 linear feet
Bulk dates:
1969-1981
Inclusive dates:
1969-1990 and undated
Collection Area:
Mass Media and Culture
Repository:
Special Collections, University of Maryland Libraries, Hornbake Library, College Park, MD 20742. Tel: 301-405-9212, Fax: 301-314-2709, Email: askhornbake@umd.edu
Abstract:

Industrialist and PBS executive Ralph B. Rogers had a long and successful career working for several industrial concerns before becoming interested in public broadcasting in the mid 1970's. In 1972, after a job as chairman of KERA in Dallas, Rogers chaired a board of lay chairman to examine the possibilities of long-range financing for public broadcasting. During this time, he also clarified the role of lay chairmen by creating and chairing the National Coordinating Committee for Governing Board Chairmen. In 1973, Rogers became chief executive of a recently reorganized Public Broadcasting Service (PBS), a position he used to improve relations with the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Rogers remained in this position until Newton C. Minow succeeded him in 1978. The collection contains correspondence, memoranda, and reports regarding the Office of Telecommunications Policy, the financing of public broadcasting, and the formation of PBS.

Important Information for Users of the Collection

Restrictions:

This collection is open for research use.

Preferred citation:

Ralph B. Rogers Papers, Special Collections, University of Maryland Libraries.

Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1903.1/1609
Publication rights:

Photocopies of original materials may be provided for a fee and at the discretion of the curator. Please see our Duplication of Materials page for more information. Queries regarding publicatioght status of materials within this collection should be directed to the appropriate curator.

Status:

This collection is PROCESSED.

Historical Note

Industrialist and PBS executive Ralph B. Rogers was born in Boston in 1909 and was educated at Northeastern University. Before his involvement with public broadcasting, Rogers worked for or ran many industrial concerns, including Cummins Diesel Engine, Edwards Company, Hill and Rogers Diesel and Aircraft, Armstrong Rubber Export, and Rogers International. In 1950, he started work with Texas Industries in Dallas and by the following year he was chairman of the board, president and chief executive officer of this company.

For much of his life, Rogers has taken an active role in public broadcasting at both the local and the national level. In Dallas, Rogers acted as the Chairman of radio station KERA from about 1968 to 1972. This chairmanship led to involvement at the national level when, in 1972, Rogers headed a board of other lay chairmen to look into the possibilities of long-range financing for public broadcasting. Rogers also clarified the role of lay chairmen by creating and chairing the National Coordinating Committee for Governing Board Chairmen. In 1973, Rogers was named chief executive officer of a recently reorganized Public Broadcasting Service, a position he used to improve relations with the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. He also served as chairman of the PBS Board of Governors. Rogers served in this position until he was succeeded by Newton C. Minow in 1978.

In addition to his work for PBS, Rogers was chairman emeritus of the Public Communication Foundation of North Texas; a member of the Board of Directors of the National Captioning Institute; and a cofounder of the Children's Television Workshop.

Rogers' other activities included being a trustee for Northeastern University, volunteers for St. Marks School, Texas, and holding emeritus status at the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Society. In addition, he was the President of the Dallas Foundation for Health Education, and Research.

Rogers died in 1997.

Scope and Contents of the Collection

The Ralph B. Rogers Papers covers the years 1969 to 1990, with the bulk of the collection from 1969 to 1981. The collection documents the interaction of the Nixon administration with public broadcasting as depicted in the selected copies of the files of the Office of Telecommunications Policy. In addition, the collection documents Rogers' work as chair of the PBS Board of Governors as well as reminiscent speeches about the history of the Public Broadcasting Service. Types of documents in the collection include articles, correspondence, memoranda, minutes, speeches, and testimonies.

Custodial History and Acquisition Information

The Ralph B. Rogers Papers was donated to the National Public Broadcasting Archives, University of Maryland Libraries by Ralph B. Rogers in July 1990, March 1991 and October 1994.

Processing Information

Processed by:

Processed by Bryan E. Cornell and Karen E. King, March 1993. Revised by Karen E. King, November 1994

Encoded by:

EAD markup created using EAD database in Microsoft Access. Markup completed by Chris Stoner, March 2006.

Detailed Description of the Collection

Series 1: Office of Telecommunications Policy, 1969-1978 (1.00 linear foot)

This series depicts the history of public broadcasting during the Nixon administration as documented by the Office of Telecommunications Policy, directed by Clay T. Whitehead. Ralph B. Rogers acquired these photocopied documents through the Freedom of Information Act. Issues include long-range financing of public broadcasting, the role of public broadcasting in public affairs programming, and the organizational structures of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and the Public Broadcasting Service. Correspondents include Clay T. Whitehead, H.R. Haldeman, and Thomas B. Curtis (former CPB director). The documents were arranged in chronological order.

DescriptionSeriesBox / ReelFolder / Frame
Public Broadcasting Files -- [chronological list], 1969-1978 series 1box 1folder 1
Public Broadcasting Files, May-June 1969 series 1box 1folder 2
Public Broadcasting Files, August-October 1969 series 1box 1folder 3
Public Broadcasting Files, November-December 1969 series 1box 1folder 4
Public Broadcasting Files, February-April 1970 series 1box 1folder 5
Public Broadcasting Files, May-August 1970 series 1box 1folder 6
Public Broadcasting Files, October-November 1970 series 1box 1folder 7
Public Broadcasting Files, December 1970 series 1box 1folder 8
Public Broadcasting Files, March-June 1971 series 1box 1folder 9
Public Broadcasting Files, July 1971 series 1box 1folder 10
Public Broadcasting Files, August-September 1971 series 1box 1folder 11
Public Broadcasting Files, October 1971 series 1box 1folder 12
Public Broadcasting Files, November-December 1971 series 1box 1folder 13
Public Broadcasting Files, January 1972 series 1box 2folder 1
Public Broadcasting Files, February 1972 series 1box 2folder 2
Public Broadcasting Files, March-April 1972 series 1box 2folder 3
Public Broadcasting Files, May 1972 series 1box 2folder 4
Public Broadcasting Files, June 1972 series 1box 2folder 5
Public Broadcasting Files, June 1972 series 1box 2folder 6
Public Broadcasting Files, July-August 1972 series 1box 2folder 7
Public Broadcasting Files, September-November 1972 series 1box 2folder 8
Public Broadcasting Files, January-February 1973 series 1box 2folder 9
Public Broadcasting Files, March-April 1973 series 1box 2folder 10
Public Broadcasting Files, May-June 1973 series 1box 2folder 11
Public Broadcasting Files, July-November 1973 series 1box 2folder 12
Public Broadcasting Files, April, June 1974 series 1box 2folder 13
Public Broadcasting Files, July-August 1974 series 1box 2folder 14

Series 2: Public Broadcasting Service, 1969-1990 and undated (1.00 linear foot)

This series documents Rogers' work as chairman of the PBS Board of Governors. Important topics include the work of the Carnegie Corporation, the CPB-PBS Agreement of 1973, long-range financing of public broadcasting, and federal legislation. It also contains speeches given by Rogers on the 17th anniversary of the Public Broadcasting Service. Key correspondents include the Public Broadcasting Service, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the National Association of Educational Broadcasters, Hartford N. Gunn, Jr., William G. Harley, Henry Loomis, former President George H.W. Bush, (then United States Ambassador to the United Nations), and former President Gerald R. Ford. They are arranged alphabetically by topic or document type, and then chronologically within each topic and folder.

DescriptionSeriesBox / ReelFolder / Frame
Board of Governors -- Briefing Book: History, Members, etc., 1969-1974 series 2box 3folder 1
Board of Governors -- Briefing Book: History, Members, etc., 1969-1974 series 2box 3folder 2
Board of Governors -- 1975 Annual Report: Chairman of the Board, 1975 series 2box 3folder 3
Board of Governors -- Board of Directors - Public Television Stations, undated series 2box 3folder 4
Board of Governors -- Principles of Organization, undated series 2box 3folder 5
Carnegie Corporation -- 1973 Annual Report -- Lists of grants [reprint], 1973 series 2box 3folder 6
Carnegie Corporation -- 1973 Annual Report -- Pifer, Alan. Twenty years in retrospect: A personal view [reprint], 1973 series 2box 3folder 7
Carnegie Corporation -- 1974 Annual Report -- Lists of grants [reprint], 1974 series 2box 3folder 8
Carnegie Corporation -- 1974 Annual Report -- Pifer, Alan. Foundations and public policy formation [reprint], 1974 series 2box 3folder 9
Carnegie Corporation -- Correspondence, 1973-1977 series 2box 3folder 10
Carnegie Corporation -- Carnegie Task Force on Public Broadcasting. Summary Report Recommending a Carnegie Commission on the Future of Public Broadcasting, June 9, 1977, August 9, 1977 series 2box 3folder 11
Corporation for Public Broadcasting -- Board of Directors -- Members, September 1972 - August 1976, undated series 2box 3folder 12
Corporation for Public Broadcasting -- Board of Directors -- Minutes, March - July 1976 series 2box 3folder 13
Corporation for Public Broadcasting -- Correspondence, February 1976 - December 1977, undated series 2box 3folder 14
CPB-PBS Agreement -- Background and History, 1972-1974 series 2box 3folder 15
CPB-PBS Agreement -- Testimony of Ralph B. Rogers for Licensees of Public Television, March 1973 series 2box 3folder 16
CPB-PBS Agreement -- Correspondence, April 1973 series 2box 3folder 17
CPB-PBS Agreement -- Amended Version, July 14, 1976 series 2box 3folder 18
Long Range Financing - [Task Force], April-September 1973, undated series 2box 4folder 1
"Cost/Effectiveness Review of Services", August 1973 series 2box 4folder 2
"Cost/Effectiveness Review of Services", August 1973 series 2box 4folder 3
"Cost/Effectiveness Review of Services", August 1973 series 2box 4folder 4
Legislation -- S. 1090 [Pastore-Magnuson Bill] -- Statement of Henry Loomis, President of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting Before the United States Senate. Committee on Commerce. Communications Subcommittee on S. 1090 - S.1228., March 28, 1973 series 2box 4folder 5
Legislation -- S. 1090 [Pastore-Magnuson Bill] -- Statement of Henry Loomis, President of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting Before the Subcommittee on Labor -- Health, Education and Welfare and Related Agencies of the Committee on Appropriations. House of Representatives., April 1973 series 2box 4folder 6
Legislation -- S. 1090 [Pastore-Magnuson Bill] -- Suggestions for Services Which Could be Provided the Public Under S. 1090., May 1973 series 2box 4folder 7
Legislation -- S. 1090 [Pastore-Magnuson Bill] -- Statement of Ralph B. Rogers, Chairman of the Board of Governors, Public Broadcasting Service Before the Subcommittee on Labor -- Health, Education and Welfare and Related Agencies of the Committee on Appropriations. House of Representatives., May 14, 1973, May 18, 1973 series 2box 4folder 8
Legislation -- S. 1090 [Pastore-Magnuson Bill] -- Statement of William G. Harley, President, National Association of Educational Broadcasters Before the Subcommittee on Labor -- Health, Education and Welfare and Related Agencies of the Committee on Appropriations. House of Representatives., May 18, 1973 series 2box 4folder 9
Legislation -- [S.893] Long Range Funding for Public Broadcasting, February-March 1975 series 2box 4folder 10
Legislation -- Federal Communications Comm. [Docket No. 21136 - Commercial policy regarding Noncommercial nature of Educational Broadcast Stations July 15, 1977] Comments of the Public Broadcasting Service, July 15, 1977 series 2box 4folder 11
Legislation -- Financing Act of 1978 [The Public Telecommunications Financing Act of 1978 - S.2883, H.R.12605], 1978 series 2box 4folder 12
Legislation -- [Public Broadcasting Amendments Act of 1981. S.720, H.R.3238], 1981 series 2box 4folder 13
Speeches, June 1990 series 2box 4folder 14
White House The Ford Administration -- Clippings, July 1974-October 1976, undated series 2box 4folder 15
White House The Ford Administration -- Correspondence, June 1974-February 1976 series 2box 4folder 16

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