Patrick Butler, retired SVP of The Washington Post, has been named president and CEO of the Association of Public Television
represents noncommercial interests. Butler is a member of the APTS board
and chair of the Maryland Public Television Foundation.
Butler's resume also includes founder and former president of Newsweek Productions while with the Post, Washington VP of Times
Mirror, and government relations VP with RCA.
Butler will take over as of Jan. 1.
He joins at a time when noncommercial TV could be in budget-cutter's sites. Republicans, soon to be back in control of the
House, have periodically called for cutting or zeroing out noncom funding, a call joined last week by the co-chairs of an Obama
administration advisory commission, which advised zeroing out federal funding for noncommercial radio and TV.
APTS President Larry Sidman resigned April 1.
Lonna Thompson has been serving as interim president and CEO, though she had said she did not want the job full-time. She is APTS
executive VP and general counsel.
"Pat has significant experience and APTS is fortunate that he has a passion for the mission of public media," said APTS Board
Chairman Rod Bates in announcing the new hire.
television has a unique role to play in educating America's children
and adults alike, in programming ranging from Sesame Street
to the works of Ken Burns that could not be replicated anywhere else,"
Butler told B&C/Multichannel News when asked to sum up the value of the service
in the face of those government threats. "We also take our public
affairs mission very seriously, as dozens of candidate
debates in the 2010 campaigns made clear, in an atmosphere of civility
that is increasingly rare in our country. And public television
stations are performing important public services ranging from online
educational platforms to emergency response systems
with new communications technologies that are the direct result of
federal investments. Congress and the Administration should be proud of
these investments in public broadcasting, which the American people
have consistently ranked as among the finest uses
of their tax dollars."