Individual 1988

Personal Award: Jim McKay


Few institutions have shared the bounty of the television revolution more than the world of sports. In many ways televised sports today represents the epitome of the technological and cultural contributions of the visual medium. In less than forty years we have moved from indistinct incandescent images to the stirring tableaux that is the Olympic Games, the Indianapolis 500 or the Kentucky Derby, and we owe much of this to one man, Jim McKay. Mr. McKay first brought the Wide World of Sports to us in 1961. He has been America’s eyes on eleven Olympic Games, including a stunning turn as both sports commentator and journalist during the tragic events at Munich in 1972. He was the first American sports commentator to visit the People’s Republic of China, one stop on his 4 1/2 million mile itinerary to date. But Jim McKay has done more than report televised sports: he has continually reminded us of its social significance and its impact upon the world stage. For a lifetime of service to broadcasting as one of the leading emissaries for sports, a personal Peabody Award to Jim McKay.