Former NBC President Julian Goodman, who ran the network between 1966 to 1974, passed away at his home in Juno Beach, Florida on Monday. He was 90.
Goodman was born in Glasgow, Kentucky on May 1st, 1922. In 1945, he started off his career at the night news desk in Washington, and soon worked his way up the corporate ladder. During his time as the youngest president in the company’s history — he obtained the position when he was just 44 — Goodman helped bring such anchors as Chet Huntley and David Brinkley to the forefront, which would ultimately establish the duo as a news team to be reckoned with.
His other accomplishments include extending a lengthy contract to Johnny Carson in an effort to keep him on “The Tonight Show”, landing the American Football League a plethora of television coverage, and, last but not least, getting himself onto the master list of former President Richard Nixon’s political opponents. In 1974, Goodman was honored with a George Foster Peabody Award for his “outstanding work in the area of First Amendment rights and privileges for broadcasting.” Two years later, he would receive the National Association of Broadcaster’s Distinguished Service Award, one of the industry’s highest honors.
“Julian Goodman came to work at NBC in 1945 as a news writer, back in the days of steam radio when the news was read by announcers,” David Brinkley once said of his close friend. “Well, from there he rose to president and board chairman of NBC and to becoming one of the most admired and respected people in broadcasting. Along the way, he, as much as anyone, helped to make NBC News and all television news, a useful and reliable service to the public.”
Goodman retired as chairman of NBC’s board in 1979, after which he moved to Juno Beach, Florida with his wife, Betty.
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