Burns Was ‘Great Champion’ of Broadcasters


Conrad-BurnsFormer U.S. Senator Conrad Burns of Montana is being remembered by the broadcast industry.

Burns, who died Thursday at 81, was a television and radio station owner and cattle auctioneer before he ran for the U.S. Senate as a Republican.

He founded four radio stations known as the Northern Ag Network, which grew to 31 total stations across Montana and Wyoming, reported the Great Falls Tribune.

Burns was in the Senate for three terms; he was a member of the Appropriations Committee and Burns was also on the Commerce Committee during the revision of the Telecom Act.

NAB President Gordon Smith and Burns were in the Senate together. Smith said “Broadcasters have lost a great champion and I have lost a good Senate friend.”

“Conrad’s deep appreciation for local broadcasting — based on his many years of service as a farm broadcaster in Montana — was evident on the Senate Commerce Committee. NAB and the farm broadcasting community will miss this common-sense lawmaker and man of good humor.”

Funeral services for Burns are scheduled for next Friday, May 6 in Billings, Montana.