One of Canada’s longest-serving cable industry veterans will be inducted into the U.S.-based Cable Center’s Cable Hall of Fame this spring.
Phil Lind, vice-chairman of Rogers Communications Inc. , is one of six people scheduled to receive the honour during a ceremony in Boston on May 21. This year’s list of inductees also includes Larry King, the former television host of CNN’s Larry King Live.
For his part, Mr. Lind will become only the third Canadian inductee since the Cable Hall of Fame was established in 1998. Previous Canadian honorees include the late Ted Rogers, the company’s former president and chief executive officer, and JR Shaw, who is executive chairman of Shaw Communications Inc.
“It is certainly a big honour,” said Mr. Lind, whose career at Rogers has spanned more than four decades. “It’s an honour because it’s from the States and they generally don’t recognize or really know that much about Canada. But in our case, we were in the States for a long time, so I think that probably helped a lot.”
In announcing the 2012 nominees, the Denver-based Cable Center noted Mr. Lind’s role in “quarterbacking” Rogers’ U.S. expansion during the 1980s.
“His team won and acquired franchises from Minneapolis to San Antonio and from Southern California to New Jersey,” it said. “When the dust settled, Rogers’ subscribers numbered in the millions.”
Although Rogers sold its U.S. cable business in 1989, the company remains well known south of the border due to its various sports interests including the Toronto Blue Jays.
Toronto-born Mr. Lind joined Rogers in 1969 as programming chief but has served in a number of roles over the years. He was also a trusted aide to Mr. Rogers, who died in 2008.
“I was often referred to as his right-hand guy. I always referred to myself as the ‘no man,’ ” Mr. Lind said. “Lots of people would always say ‘yes’ to Ted. Not as many people would say ‘no’ to him. So, in an sense, I suppose that’s where I was somewhat valuable to him.”