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Texas Broadcasters’ Public Service Grows to Nearly $6 Billion

- Local Stations Working to Strengthen Communities

Despite the continuing expansion of the media marketplace, Texas’ local Radio and TV stations continue their dominance in strengthening the communities they serve by engaging listeners and viewers to support local schools, hospitals and charities.

TAB’s 21st annual Public Service Ascertainment Survey, completed Jan. 10, documented more than $96 million in such works in 2019 alone, bringing the cumulative value to $5.7 Billion since the survey began in 1998.

Stations reported raising more than $34 million for charities and investing $15 million in long-form public service programming. Community initiatives were as diverse as Texas itself, ranging from medical technology for hospitals to summer reading programs to FFA and 4H competitions.

The figures include responses from just 13% of Texas stations on average and are not extrapolated to account for stations that do not participate in the survey. Survey responses are evaluated and tallied independently by Dr. August “Augie” Grant, a former TAB Board member and professor in the College of Communications at UT-Austin.

He now serves as the J. Rion McKissick professor of journalism at the University of South Carolina School of Journalism and Mass Communications.

The results underscore that broadcasters continue to invest in the communities they serve not just with expanded news programming, investigative reporting, entertainment and emergency warnings, even as they contend with new digital entrants that siphon ad dollars from local markets without any meaningful reinvestment in those communities.

TAB utilizes the data gleaned from the annual survey to underscore to state and federal policymakers the unique role that Radio and TV broadcasters serve in their local communities while fulfilling regulatory obligations that do not apply to digital competitors.

NAB Seeking Entries to Celebration of Service to America Awards

TAB’s survey results come just as the National Association of Broadcasters Leadership Foundation issues its call for entries for the prestigious Celebration of Service to America Awards which are due by March 6. Submissions are open to all broadcasters; NAB membership is not required. 

The award ceremony honors local radio and television broadcasters across the country for their exceptional commitment to keeping their communities informed and safe and going the extra mile to help those in need. Throughout the evening, broadcast industry leaders, philanthropists, government officials and members of the press will see firsthand the dedication of the honorees as they accept their community service accolades.

Honorees receive free travel and hotel accommodations for the black-tie event to be held June 9 in Washington, DC.

Eight Service to Community Awards will be presented, with one radio and one television honoree in each of the following categories:

  • Broadcast Ownership Group
  • Large/Major Market (TV DMAs 1-50, Radio Markets 1-50)
  • Medium Market (TV DMAs 51-100, Radio Markets 51-150)
  • Small Market (TV DMAs 101-210, Radio Markets 151-300)

Radio and television stations, as well as broadcast ownership groups, are encouraged to enter their best community service efforts of the past year to win national recognition. Entries must be submitted by Friday, March 6.

Additional information on the awards entry rules is available here.

About the Celebration of Service to America Awards

The Celebration of Service to America Awards is sponsored and produced by the National Association of Broadcasters Leadership Foundation with major support from the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB), Bonneville International and Hearst Television. In recent years, John Legend; Jon Bon Jovi; Sharon Stone; Gary Sinise; Paul Simon; Stevie Wonder; Glenn Close; Jeff Bridges; Quincy Jones; Sir Elton John; Bill Clinton; Laura Bush; Muhammad Ali; among others, have been presented with the Celebration of Service to America Leadership Award at the event. Details about the Celebration of Service to America Awards are available at

Questions? Contact TAB’s Oscar Rodriguez or call (512) 322-9944.

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