ABC Rejoins NAB; Padden to Take NAB Board Seat

Aug 3, 2005  •  Post A Comment

The National Association of Broadcasters announced late Wednesday that ABC has rejoined the association.

Under the deal, Preston Padden, executive VP of worldwide government relations for ABC parent The Walt Disney Co., will immediately assume a seat on the NAB board.

Along with the ABC Network, ABC’s 10 TV stations and 70 radio stations have also rejoined NAB.

In a statement, Mr. Padden said, “ABC believes that the best interests of our industry, our company and ultimately the viewing public can be promoted by returning to the NAB at this time. With policy differences now behind us, ABC and NAB are once again in a position to work together towards our important common goals.”

ABC and the other Big 4 TV networks dropped their memberships in the association over the past several years, largely because NAB’s affiliate-dominated board forced the association to fight a network effort to dramatically relax national TV station ownership limits. The withdrawal of the networks dealt a major blow to NAB’s prestige.

Said Eddie Fritts, NAB president and CEO, “This is great news for NAB, ABC and the entire broadcast industry. There is no denying that we are stronger as an industry when we are united.”

Added Bruce Reese, NAB’s joint board chairman and president and CEO of Bonneville Broadcasting, “We are proud to welcome ABC back into the NAB family. ABC stations have a well-deserved reputation for delivering high-quality news and public service, two of the hallmarks of local broadcasting.”