Ex-TV Academy Pres. wins prestigious award

Former TV Academy prexy Rich Frank has been awarded the org’s Syd Cassyd Founders Award, which will be handed out Friday at the Creative Arts Emmy ceremony.

Nod, named after TV Acad founder Cassyd, is awarded only occasionally to members “who have made a significant positive impact on the Academy through their efforts and service over many years of involvement.”

“This is only the eighth time in its history that the Television Academy has bestowed this prestigious award, and there is no one more deserving of this honor than Rich Frank,” Academy of TV Arts & Sciences chairman-CEO Dick Askin said Tuesday. “Rich helped expand the image of the Academy beyond the Primetime Emmys through a variety of groundbreaking initiatives.”

Frank served the org three terms as president (a position retitled as chairman-CEO in the late 1990s). During his tenure, he oversaw several initiatives, including a groundbreaking 1994 “Information Superhighway Summit” that included Hollywood and D.C. heavy hitters, and garnered national coverage.

Frank also established the TV Academy’s Campaign Against Substance Abuse, and he embraced then-Disney/Touchstone TV prexy Dean Valentine’s idea of an oral history database of TV heavyhitters, helping launch the Archive of American Television.

Frank is a consultant for management group the Firm and is vice chairman of the American Film Institute. Creative Arts Emmy kudofest takes place at the Shrine Auditorium.

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