(L-R: Larry D. Unger, President & CEO, Maryland Public Television;
State Senator Nancy J. King; and Patrick Butler, President and CEO, APTS)
WASHINGTON - February 26, 2020 - America's Public Television Stations (APTS) today presented the Champion of Public Broadcasting Award to Maryland State Senator Nancy J. King (D-Montgomery County).
In 2017, State Senator King authored and secured passage of Maryland Senate Bill 1034, a ground-breaking law that requires the Governor to increase the funding provided to the Maryland Public Broadcasting Commission, the governing body of Maryland Public Television, by the same percent that the general fund revenues increase for that year. In addition, this law requires the Governor to provide funding to make up any cut in the federal funding provided to the Maryland Public Broadcasting Commission through the Corporation for Public Broadcasting's Community Service Grants for local stations.
This remarkable piece of legislation ensures that public funding will be a reliable source of support for Maryland Public Television. King is the first State legislator to ever receive the Champion of Public Broadcasting Award.
"Senator King has written a whole new chapter in the history of public support for public television," said APTS president and CEO Patrick Butler. "SB 1034 is an inspiration for every public television station in America, and we are deeply appreciative of her leadership and vision in creating this first-of-its-kind legislation. We could not ask for a more faithful advocate of our cause, and we are honored to present a well-deserved 2020 Champion of Public Broadcasting Award to State Senator Nancy King of Maryland."
The Champion of Public Broadcasting Award is given to political leaders and other individuals who safeguard the ability of local public television stations to provide education, public safety and civic leadership services to their communities.
"I'm proud that Maryland Public Television is demonstrating every day its commitment to public service and its leadership in inventing public television's future," said Senator King. "The legislation the Maryland legislature enacted to support MPT will ensure our State's investment in this work for many years to come. I am honored to receive this year's Champion of Public Broadcasting Award, and I will be a champion every year."
"Senator King has authored and championed a landmark law in support of public television," said Maryland Public Television president and CEO Larry D. Unger, "and we at MPT will work hard every day to earn the trust she has placed in us. We hope other States will consider similar legislation to safeguard public investment in the work of public television stations nationwide."
Senator Nancy King was born and raised in Niagara Falls, New York. She graduated from the Niagara Falls public school system and attended Niagara County Community College.
Upon moving to Maryland in 1981, Senator King's children attended Montgomery County public schools, and it was during that time that she bgan volunteering in the school system and other civic organizations. In 1993, she became President of the Montgomery County Council of Parent-Teacher Associations (PTAs).
In 1994, Senator King was elected to the Montgomery County Board of Education representing District 1 and quickly rose through the leadership ranks, and served for two years as President. Senator King continued to serve on the School Board until 2002, until she was elected to Maryland's House of Delegates representing District 39.
As a member of the House of Delegates, Senator King served on the Ways and Means Committee where, in 2006, she became the Chair of the Education sub-committee. In August of 2007, Senator King was appointed to the Maryland Senate where she continues to serve.
Senator King is the current Majority Leader of the Maryland Senate and has been recognized by several state and national organizations including the National Biotechnology Industry Organization, the Tech Council of Maryland , the Maryland Association of Boards of Education, the Dental Association's Legislator of the Year award and the Dr. Nancy S. Grasmick Leadership Award in Early Care & Education.
The Champion of Public Broadcasting Award was presented to Maryland State Senator Nancy King during the APTS Public Media Summit on Wednesday, February 26, 2020.
America's Public Television Stations (APTS) is a nonprofit membership organization ensuring a strong and financially sound public television system and helping member stations provide essential public services in education, public safety and civic leadership to the American people. For more information, visit www.apts.org.