Alumnus Larry Patrick Named Giant of Broadcasting
CCI alumnus and Honorary Board of Visitors member Larry Patrick was honored as one of the 2019 Giants of Broadcasting and Electronic Arts by the Library of American Broadcasting Foundation.
Patrick and his fellow honorees, Connie Chung, Peter Dunn, Lester Holt, Paula Kerger, Alfred C. Liggins III, Mark Pedowitz, Mark Richer, and Julie Talbott, were recognized at an awards ceremony in New York City on November 14, 2019.
Patrick is founder and managing partner of media brokerage Patrick Communications and radio group Legends Communications. He earned his master’s degree in communications from CCI in 1973 and has been a strong supporter of the college over the years.
The Communications Building auditorium was named Patrick Auditorium in his honor in 2013. His financial gifts to the college have included a $1 million cash gift – the largest ever received by the college – to establish the Herb Howard Distinguished Professorship and a $5 million estate gift to convert the professorship into a faculty chair in the future. He was also CCI’s Spring 2018 Commencement speaker.
Below is Patrick’s biography from the awards program:
Larry Patrick is founder and managing partner of Patrick Communications, a media brokerage company, and Legend Communications, a 24-station small-market radio group. He is also an investor in NRJ TV, a television group with 11 major market stations. As a broker, his firm has completed more than $8 billion in transactions with 165 television deals and more than 600 radio contracts. His wife, Susan Patrick, is a partner in the brokerage and station group. Together, they have advised more than 50 private equity firms or lenders on broadcast transactions.
Patrick’s career has spanned many positions as a broadcaster, musician, concert promoter, university professor, trade association executive, station group owner, media consultant to many private equity investors and credit providers, media broker and investment banker and a leader of multiple philanthropic efforts.
In recent years, he and Susan have built a dental and medical clinic at an orphanage in Swaziland; a preschool on the Maasai tribal homelands in Kenya; an inner-city dental clinic in Washington, D.C.; supported two orphanages for Native American children in South Dakota and Montana; and have endowed professorships at the University of Tennessee and Ohio University. They have also funded multiple scholarships at five universities through the Broadcast Education Association. They have raised more than $1.7 million for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis and given significant support for the Nature Conservancy and the Trust for Public Lands. He has funded a 10-year legal fellowship in Mississippi through the Southern Poverty Law Center.
A native of Kentucky, Patrick began working in radio and later TV while still in high school and throughout his college years. He was a fulltime news producer at WKYT-TV in Lexington and a producer-director for the University of Kentucky Television Center while an undergraduate. He joined WATE-TV in Knoxville, Tennessee, as a news producer upon graduation.
He served on the faculty of the University of Tulsa and the University of Maryland and was an adjunct educator at the Georgetown University Law Center and Central Michigan University. He also presented management seminars in more than 20 countries and established many radio and TV stations in Eastern Europe.
Following his time as a professor, he joined the National Association of Broadcasters as senior vice president and was later chief operating officer of Gilmore Broadcasting Corporation. Then he began building his own radio group. During his career, he has owned or managed more than 100 radio stations and 65 television stations. In the mid-1990s, he and Susan focused their efforts on station brokerage. He helped create NRJ TV that was a successful participant in the television spectrum auction.
Patrick has served as a receiver or trustee of more broadcast stations than anyone else in the country. He has managed the 26-station Border Media Group of Texas, Millcreek Broadcasting in Utah, and stations in Dayton, Hartford, Houston, Kansas City, San Diego, Modesto, Harlingen-Brownsville, Savannah, Allentown, Quad Cities, Salt Lake City, Fresno, Oxnard-Ventura and several smaller markets. He served as chairman of the board and lead independent director of ION Media during its three-year reorganization in the mid-2000s.
Patrick holds a bachelor’s in telecommunications from the University of Kentucky, a master’s in communications from the University of Tennessee, a PhD in communications and management from Ohio University, and a JD from Georgetown University Law Center. He was named the outstanding alumnus in the UT College of Communication and Information and later received the University of Tennessee’s to alumni honor, the Distinguished Alumnus Award. He was also honored as an outstanding alumnus of the College of Communication at Ohio University.
He was inducted into the Michigan Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame and was given the Ward Quall Award by the Broadcasters Foundation of America.
Patrick served as director and chairman of the National Association of Broadcasters Political Action Committee (NABPAC), director and chairman of the National Association of Broadcasters Leadership Foundation (NABLF) and has been a long-time sponsor and teacher in NAB’s Broadcast Leadership Training Program. His professional board service also includes: director on the NAB Radio Board, a director and treasurer of the Library of American Broadcasting Foundation, and a director of the IRTS Foundation.
Now an honorary member of the CCI Board of Visitors, he has also been on the advisory boards at the University of Kentucky and Ohio University. He also served as vice chairman of the Yellowstone Park Foundation, director of the Chesapeake Boy Outward Bound and the Hurricane Island Outward Bound Schools, and chairman of the John Bayliss Foundation. He is an advisor to the Buffalo Bill Center of the West in Cody, Wyoming.
Patrick has four children (Matthew, Shannon, Daniel, and Shelby) and four grandchildren (Hailey, Layla, Callie, and Liam). He currently lives in Cody, Wyoming, and Denver, Colorado.