Richard Whiteley Award 2005
Sir Paul Fox
This new award is for ‘inspiring others’, as a tribute to the TV presenter, it goes to Sir Paul Fox who was a friend and mentor to Richard throughout his career. It was during Sir Paul’s time as managing director of Yorkshire TV that Countdown was born and Richard became a household name.
Sir Paul Fox is a British television executive, who spent much of his broadcasting career working for BBC Television, most prominently as the Controller of BBC One between 1967and 1973.
He began his career at the Corporation in the 1950s, writing scripts for the Television Newsreel programme before going on to create and edit the popular sports programme Sportsview. While editing Sportsview, in 1954 he hit upon the idea of creating the annual BBC Sports Personality of the Year award, a glittering ceremony that is still held every December by the Corporation and seen as one of the major events in UK sport.
By the early 1960s he had been promoted to Head of Public Affairs at BBC Television, and in this role was heavily involved in the news coverage of the assassination of President Kennedy in 1963 and the subsequent reaction to the events in the UK.
In 1967 he became the Controller of BBC One, the oldest television station in the UK, and he was to hold this post for six years, one of the longest reigns of any BBC Channel Controller.
He was later the Managing Director of Yorkshire Television, and was Chairman of ITN from1986 to 1988. He has subsequently been knighted, and is thus now Sir Paul Fox.