Scripps Howard Foundation creates Donald L. Perris Scholarship Fund

Wed, April 19, 2006 by Judith G. Clabes

CINCINNATI – The Scripps Howard Foundation, the philanthropic arm of The E. W. Scripps Company, has established a $1.25 million scholarship and internship fund in memory of long-time Scripps broadcasting executive Donald L. Perris, who died March 7 at the age of 82.   The endowed fund, which will be administered by the Scripps College of Communication at Ohio University, is part of a ten-year, $15 million commitment the Foundation has made to the university to support media studies programs, scholarships and technological improvements.    The Donald L. Perris Scholarship/Internship Fund will provide grants for undergraduate students at OU who are working toward degrees across all media disciplines, including broadcasting.   “Don Perris was a consummate professional who loved nothing more than to mentor younger colleagues who demonstrated great promise,” said Judith G. Clabes, president and chief executive officer of the Scripps Howard Foundation. “I can think of no finer tribute than establishing a perpetual memorial in Don’s name that will help educate media professionals for generations to come.”   Perris served as president and chief executive officer of Scripps Howard Broadcasting Company, a subsidiary of Scripps, for 14 years before retiring in 1988. He began his career at Scripps in 1943 as a copy boy at The Cleveland Press. In 1948, he became a news reporter and furnace tender at the broadcasting company’s first television station, WEWS-TV in Cleveland. He later worked as an announcer, cameraman, interviewer, film editor, traffic manager, stagehand, salesman and program host before becoming station manager in 1964.   “In many ways, Don Perris was way ahead of his time,” said Kenneth W. Lowe, president and chief executive officer of Scripps. “Having witnessed firsthand television’s emergence as a powerful communication platform, he knew as well as anyone that the business of media and the habits of media consumers were always changing. This scholarship fund is in recognition of Don’s vision for our industry and lifelong dedication to his craft.”   Contributions to the Donald L. Perris Scholarship/Internship Fund can be made through either the Scripps Howard Foundation or the Ohio University Foundation. The Scripps Howard Foundation will match gifts of any amount. Donors choosing to donate stock are asked to contact the Foundation for details.   About Scripps Howard Foundation   The Scripps Howard Foundation, established in 1962, strives to advance the cause of a free press through support of excellence in journalism, quality journalism education and professional development. The Foundation helps build healthy communities and improve the quality of life through support of sound educational programs, strong families, vital social services, enriching arts and culture and inclusive civic affairs.

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