Bill Pearce: A Tribute

(Rochester, NY) -- In memory of Bill Pearce, WXXI’s longest-serving president who passed away in April at the age of 95, WXXI presents Bill Pearce: A Tribute. The half-hour special, with an introduction by WXXI’s current President Norm Silverstein, airs Sunday, June 21, 2020 at 5:30 p.m. on WXXI-TV. Bill Pearce: A Tribute takes a look back at Pearce’s contributions as a pioneer in public broadcasting. It features clips of archival footage from a 1995 television special celebrating Pearce’s retirement from the station after 26 years. The footage also includes remarks from then board chair Thomas McHugh, who served as the host of the broadcast.

Pearce started the first public radio station on Long Island before taking over as president of WXXI in 1969. Under his leadership the station launched WXXI-FM, acquired AM 1370 – which became WXXI’s main news station – and established Reachout Radio, WXXI’s 24-hour radio reading service for people with visual impairments. He was involved in the creation and presentation of many key WXXI programs including, The Rochester I KnowHomework Hotline, and Presidential Interviews. During his tenure, WXXI earned numerous educational television awards and a Peabody Award.

Bill Pearce: A Tribute will repeat Friday, June 26 at 8:30 p.m. and Saturday, June 27 at 1:30 p.m. on WXXI-TV.

Photo: Bill Pearce with Sesame Street's Burt and Ernie 
Credit: Provided by WXXI



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