Lowry Mays, Founder Of Largest U.S. Radio Group, Dies At 87
SAN ANTONIO (AP) — Lowry Mays, whose accidental purchase of a San Antonio radio station propelled him into the nation’s largest owner of radio stations, has died. He was 87.
Texas A&M University, Mays’ alma mater and site of the Lowry Mays College & Graduate School of Business, announced that the San Antonio businessman Mays died Monday. It did not specify where Mays died or the circumstances of his death.
Mays was a prosperous petroleum engineer and investment banker when he agreed to co-sign a note to purchase a San Antonio FM station in 1972 but ended up owning it, according to a biography on the Mays Family Foundation website.
The purchase grew into Clear Channel Communications as it continued to buy other radio stations and billboard companies. Now named iHeartMedia, the San Antonio-based company owns more than 860 radio stations and syndication networks that carried such conservative talk show hosts as Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity.
The Mays family sold its interest in what was then Clear Channel Communications in 2008 when it was taken private.
Mays served two non-consecutive terms on the Texas A&M University System Board of Regents and chaired the board in 2003-05.
NAB presented Mays with its Distinguished Service Award in 2005. NAB President-CEO Curtis LeGeyt said in a statement yesterday: “NAB is saddened by the passing of Lowry Mays, a trailblazing icon whose historic career revolutionized and reshaped the broadcasting industry. He founded and built one of the foremost media companies in the world through bold and innovative thinking, while his philanthropic and generous spirit helped countless people during his lifetime of service. We extend our deepest condolences to the Mays family and the iHeartMedia community.”
September 14, 2022 at 11:20 am
One of the most hated men in radio. That’s quite an achievement.