Sarnoff, David

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Sarnoff, David,

1891–1971, American pioneer in radio and television, b. Russia. Emigrating to the United States in 1900, he worked for the Marconi Wireless Company, winning recognition as the narrator of the news of the Titanic disaster (1912). In 1915, he proposed a "radio music box" that led to radio broadcasting as it is known today. The Radio Corporation of America (RCA) absorbed the Marconi firm in 1921, and Sarnoff became general manager. As president (after 1930) and eventually chief executive officer (1947–66) and chairman of the board (1947–70) of RCA, he helped develop black-and-white and compatible color television. In 1944, the Television Broadcaster's Association gave Sarnoff the title "Father of American Television," a moniker appropriate for his contribution to the development of commercial television broadcasting but misleading in terms of the development of television technology. He served Dwight D. Eisenhower in World War II as adviser on communications. Active in public affairs, he was often a spokesman for the broadcasting industry.


See R. Sobel, RCA (1986); K. Bilby, The General: David Sarnoff and the Rise of the Communications Industry (1986).

Sarnoff, David

(1891–1971) broadcast pioneer/executive; born in Uzlian, Russia. He emigrated to New York City with his family at age nine and studied electrical engineering at the Pratt Institute. He gained national recognition in 1912 as a Marconi Wireless Telegraph Co. operator by reporting on the sinking of the Titanic and then staying at his station for 72 hours to help direct ships to the sinking liner. When the newly formed Radio Corporation of America (RCA) acquired Marconi Wireless, he rose through the ranks, becoming RCA's president and chairman, and retiring in 1970. A man with a clear vision of broadcasting's future, he predicted radio would become a basic household utility and proposed designing "Radio Music Boxes." Foreseeing the need for programming networks, he set up the National Broadcasting Co. in 1926 to stimulate RCA's radio sales. He was responsible for the first American television service, arranging for RCA to televise programs in 1936 to 150 homes in the New York City area. Under his guidance, RCA developed the black-and-white-compatible color television system adopted by the Federal Communication Commission in 1953, and the National Broadcasting Company took the lead in broadcasting color television. A colonel in the U.S. Army Signal Corps from 1924, he was promoted to brigadier general while on active duty in 1944–45 and thereafter enjoyed being called General Sarnoff.
References in periodicals archive ?
7) David Sarnoff, left, founder of NBC, with the man who invented radio, Guglielmo Marconi.
In the interview, the two detailed the bitter rivalry between Columbia owner William Paley and RCA owner David Sarnoff, which resulted in the same kind of format war that since has bedeviled everything from computers to DVDs.
The satellite was developed in a collaborative project initiated, designed, and constructed by RCA staff at the David Sarnoff Research Center (now Sarnoff Corporation), the Astro-Electronics Division and the Defense Electronics Products under the supervision of the U.
Phillips Professor in the Economics of Innovation, Science Policy Research Unit, University of Sussex SCOTT STERN, David Sarnoff Professor of Management and Technology, Massachusetts Institute of Technology NILI SHALEV, Minister of Economy to North America, State of Israel DOUG RAND, Assistant Director for Entrepreneurship, White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, United States of America URI LEVINE, Founder & President at Waze; Chairman at FeeX GEORGES NAHON, CEO at Orange Labs, Silicon Valley, Orange Telecommunications BRAD BURNHAM, Managing Partner at Union Square Ventures
His father, radio pioneer David Sarnoff, built the Radio Corporation of America into one of the country's great corporate monoliths.
Carlson's 40 years with SRI trace back to his early career with RCA Laboratories, which was acquired by GE and became the David Sarnoff Research Center that then became an SRI subsidiary, Sarnoff Corporation.
Lucent Technologies, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Philips Electronics, the David Sarnoff Research Center, Thomson Consumer Electronics and Zenith Electronics.
Heilmeier's most noteworthy contribution to consumer home entertainment occurred in the mid-1960s, when he led the team at RCA's David Sarnoff Research Center labs that created the first liquid crystal displays.
2013 AFCEA David Sarnoff Award Recipient GEN Keith B.
The money will help Sensar, a 4-year-old subsidiary of the David Sarnoff Research Center in Princeton, further perfect IrisIdent.
David holds a bachelor's degree in engineering from Yale University and attended the Princeton University Graduate School of Engineering where he was a David Sarnoff Fellow.
AFCEA was founded at Camp Gordon in 1946, during the transition from World War II, by a group of communicators led by David Sarnoff, and they established AFCEA from the U.