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James E. Duffy

Class of 1949

Awarded in 1999
50th Reunion Award

In a field that creates weekly headlines with changes in leadership, ownership, and realignments of talent, Jim Duffy of the class of 1949 may well represent the last period of stability and network identity in the television industry. He honed his broadcasting skills as an undergraduate at Beloit, where he sought out every opportunity to gain experience. From the press box with sidekick Dave Mason doing the play-by-play of Buccaneer football games, he rose steadily to the executive suite of ABC where he served an unprecedented 15 years as president. Upon retirement from that network, he turned his attention to problems of literacy in our nation with the founding of Public Literacy-US in cooperation with PBS and applied his considerable energy and executive abilities to the general field of public and community service. Always mindful of his roots, this past year he helped to establish “Beloit is America: The James E. Duffy Internship Program in Public Service” at Beloit College which is already bringing the talents of a new generation to bear on the critical problems of this and other microcosms of America. He has brought pride and distinction to his alma mater and has enhanced the opportunities of all our students. As he celebrates the 50th anniversary of his graduation, Beloit College is honored to present him with the Distinguished Service Citation.