Come September 18th Ted Turner will have yet an additional spacious and luxurious floor to add to his towering high rise of accomplishments. As of July 30th the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences (NATAS) announced that it will bestow this year’s News and Documentary Emmy Award for Lifetime Achievement to the seasoned media mogul. The award is being presented as part of the 36th Annual News and Documentary Emmy Awards and will take place at Lincoln Center’s David Geffen Hall (heretofore Avery Fisher Hall). More than 1,400 Television and News Media Industry professionals, news and documentary producers and journalists will be in attendance and the awards will be presented in 45 different categories.
The honor itself is long in building for Mr. Turner. Best known as founder and creator of CNN, along with innovator of Turner Classic movies, his additional list of initiatives and championed causes both corporate and charitable is extensive and diverse.
Launched in 1980, CNN would go on to generate vast amounts of success as one of the first 24 hour stations for broadcast news on a global platform. The next two decades would see Turner expand his varying trademarks and ventures to include CNN Headline News, CNN International, TNT, The Cartoon Network, and Turner Classic Movies.
At the commencement of the 90s Turner would extend his reach and acquire Castle Rock, New Line Cinema, expanding his circle even further in 1996 only to merge with Time Warner. In 2001 Time Warner would merge with AOL to establish AOL Time Warner but would eventually change its name back to Time Warner Inc.
Yet, to this day, some of Turner’s greatest, yet lesser known achievements –even further behind the scenes– center around philanthropy and environmentalism. The Television Tycoon’s influence has been felt across the globe most notably since 1990: the year in which he founded both The Turner Foundation and Captain Planet Foundation. While both concern themselves extensively with environmental issues, The Turner Foundation is focused primarily on endeavors to improve and protect air and water quality, along with wildlife preservation, and population control. Since its inception, The Turner Foundation has granted over 380 million dollars to hundreds of associations with similar goals.
Captain Planet Foundation, established in August of 1990 encourages children, via an assortment of global projects, to find resolutions for ecological problems in their neighborhoods and communities.
But it doesn’t stop there. In 1997 Turner initiated the Turner Endangered Species Foundation chiefly for the purpose of animal preservation on the Turner properties with a concentrated focus on biodiversity.
In September of 1997 Turner granted a momentous pledge of 1 billion dollars to the United Nations after which he launched the United Nations Foundation a year later: an initiative to assist in combating climate change, and poverty along with fomenting global welfare, peace, security.
To top all that off, in 2001 the media magnate instigated the Nuclear Threat initiative (NTI), an organization with whom he co-chairs with Senator Sam Nunn. Since its inception it has been NTI’s mission to narrow the ever increasing fissure between nuclear, chemical and biological threats and worldwide rapid reaction.
For years on end it has been Turner’s prime mission to encourage the use of clean energy and solidify the shift from fossil fuels to pure, natural and limitless energy sources.
Aside from being one of the nation’s top News/Entertainment experts and environmental activists, Turner has been granted a plethora of laudatory degrees, professional awards, and civic honors namely: 1991’s TIME Man of the Year, 1999’s Broadcasting and Cable Man of the Century and one of TIME’S most influential people in 2009. Even more recently Turner accepted the 2011 Palazzo Strozzi Foundation’s Renaissance Man of the Year award along with the Overseas Press Club Lifetime Achievement Award in 2012. Coincidentally he was also paid tribute by the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 35th Annual Sports Emmy Awards in 2014…to name just a few…
“In my over 30 years working in the television industry, there is no man that has made a bigger or more long-lasting impact on the world of television news that Ted Turner,” exclaims NATAS President Bob Mauro. “His vision, leadership and flawless execution and launch of CNN was and is unparalleled in the industry. CNN, the world’s first 24/7 cable news network, revolutionized the industry in ways that continue to reverberate across the globe and throughout the television landscape.”
“Ted Turner is many things: an entrepreneur, a philanthropist, a larger-than-life figure, a citizen of the world,” according to Senior Vice President of the News & Documentary Emmy Awards David Winn. “But perhaps his most important achievement is the founding of CNN. Cable television was the disruptive technology of its day, and Ted Turner was the single most important figure in the creation of cable news. We at the National Television Academy are honored to present him with this year’s lifetime achievement award.”
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