On behalf of the Board of the Illinois Valley Public Telecommunications Corporation and the staff of WTVP, I am saddened to report the passing of Dr. Philip Weinberg, WTVP founder, advocate and friend. We will not forget to celebrate his many gifts and accomplishments to Central Illinois over these many years.
Phil was a rare individual with the ability to dream wonderful dreams and then turn them into reality. We are all the beneficiaries. Creating the College of Electrical Engineering at Bradley was among his proudest achievements. He very often spoke with fondness of former colleagues and students who went on to academic and professional success. And then there was WCBU Radio which allowed him to share his love of opera and the classics. However, the pinnacle of Phil's legacy has to be WTVP. Perhaps this is our bias, too.
Countless children over the past forty years have learned to read, count and be prepared for academic success thanks to Sesame Street and to public television that he created in Peoria. People in the tens of millions have been exposed to world-class science, arts, performances, citizenship, news, and so much more that would not have otherwise been possible without Phil's vision and persistence. His work influenced generations of learners.
What man could leave a better legacy?
Each of us individually and as Phil's WTVP family will miss him, his stories, his anecdotes, and his gentle prodding to continue the mission he started. As we pass his portrait each time we walk into the WTVP studio, we are reminded that we stand on the shoulders of a great visionary. We are all the richer for his presence, and we are all most grateful for this exceptional man. We pledge to continue the mission he held so dear.
2012 Chairman, Illinois Valley Public Telecommunications Corporation