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USC honors Lear with chair

Kaplan will be first to serve in post

The University of Southern California has established the Norman Lear Chair in Entertainment, Media and Society, in honor of the film and TV producer.

Martin Kaplan, founding director of the Norman Lear Center at the USC Annenberg School will serve in the post.

Launched in 2000, the Center studies the impact of entertainment on society. Kaplan, a research professor, has been associate dean of the Annenberg School since 1997. 

Other than the Annenberg family, Lear is the largest donor to the school, having recently pledged $6 million to bring his philanthropic total to $11 million. The Center has received an additional $9 million in gifts and research grants from foundations, government and other sources.

Lear currently serves as chairman of the multimedia holiding company Act III Communications.

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