Comcast today announced the death of Ralph J. Roberts, its founder and chairman emeritus, in Philadelphia, PA. He was 95.
Ralph Roberts, who died due to natural causes last night, was a born entrepreneur, great American businessman and philanthropist, who played a key role in the development of the cable television business.
He founded Comcast in 1963 by purchasing of a 1,200-subscriber cable system in Tupelo, Mississippi. He grew the regional cable company into the global Fortune 50 media and technology leader.
During his more than five decades at Comcast, Ralph was respected and admired for his visionary leadership and spirit, his passion for the business and his deep sense of integrity and courtesy. He was a kind and humble man who has been the heart and soul of Comcast for over 50 years.
Ralph was respected and acknowledged throughout his life for his involvement in community and civic activities. He was committed to the fight against cancer and, in 2006, along with his wife Suzanne and his family, helped establish the Roberts Proton Therapy Center at Penn Medicine.
He also served on the boards of the Council of Emeritus Directors of the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Brandywine Museum and Conservancy, the Advisory Board of the Greater Philadelphia Urban Affairs Coalition, the Penn Medicine Board of Trustees and the National Conference for Community and Justice.
Most recently, Ralph was presented, along with his wife, Suzanne with the Philadelphia Award, in recognition of their lifetime contributions to the City of Philadelphia in the worlds of business, philanthropy, and arts and culture.
Ralph is survived by Suzanne Roberts, his wife of over 70 years. In addition to his wife, Ralph is survived by four of his children and their spouses and eight grandchildren.
Comcast said in a statement: “Ralph was a born entrepreneur, a visionary businessman, a philanthropist and a wonderful human being. Ralph built Comcast into one of America’s greatest companies and his vision and spirit have been at the heart of Comcast and our culture for 50 years. He will be truly missed. Ralph’s greatest love was his family, and our deepest sympathies go to his wife Suzanne and the entire Roberts family.”
The family will host a private service for the family. There will be a Remembrance Ceremony to celebrate the life of Ralph Roberts in the future.
The Roberts family said in a statement: “Ralph was a remarkable man who touched the lives of so many people. He was a wonderful husband, father and grandfather and perhaps most importantly, a kind and humble human being. He will always be remembered for his generosity, integrity, honesty, kindness and respect for everyone around him. He was an inspiration to us all and we will miss him greatly.”
Rob Marcus, chairman and CEO of Time Warner Cable, said: “Ralph Roberts was a pioneer, a visionary and a role model. He exemplified the value of working hard and treating others with kindness and respect. His influence has extended far beyond Comcast and Cable. His life’s work, and the legacy he leaves, helped shape the way consumers use content today and how they communicate with one another.”
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