Robert Rosencrans, C-SPAN chairman, dies at 89

U.S. President Bill Clinton looks at a T-shirt given to him by Barry Katz, not shown, after an impromptu visit in Washington on Sunday, July 23, 1995 to the C-Span yellow school bus, appearing on C-Span Sunday Journal. (AP Photo/Doug Mills)

GREENWICH, Conn. (AP) — The first board chairman of C-SPAN who helped steer the public affairs network through its opening years and worked for the organization for almost four decades has died. Robert Rosencrans was 89.

Rosencrans’ wife, Marjorie, told The Associated Press on Thursday that her husband died Wednesday at a Greenwich, Connecticut hospital. He had recently suffered a stroke.

C-SPAN says that as the then-president of UA-Columbia Cable, Rosencrans and business partner Ken Gunter became the first cable operators to support the idea of Brian Lamb, who envisioned C-SPAN as a public affairs channel.

Rosencrans wrote a check for $25,000 and convinced others cable industry people to contribute to what proved to be the seed money that helped create the infrastructure to transmit the first live broadcasts of the U.S. House in 1979.

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