Temple University's media school named for broadcast pioneer

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Temple University?s school of media and communications is getting a new name. (WPVI)

Temple University's school of media and communications is getting a new name.

It's in honor of a broadcasting pioneer who has a special place in Action News history.

Through his teaching and his philanthropy, Lew Klein has helped countless Temple students, and on Wednesday the university announced their school of media and communication will be renamed to honor him.

It's a tribute students say is fitting.

"No one deserves it more than Lew Klein, because anyone who has watched TV in the past 65 years - they've been influenced by him," said senior Nick Charles.

Temple says the Lew Klein College of Media and Communications not just honors Klein's TV career, but also his commitment to the university.

That includes more than six decades of teaching and a historic, multi-million dollar gift to the school from Lew and Janet Klein.

The Klein's gift is supported by two additional seven digit contributions from school alumnus Steve Charles and Gerry and Marguerite Lenfest.

"He has been generous financially and he's also giving of his time. He has molded the lives of faculty, and sent untold numbers of people into the television and media industry," said JoAnne Epps, Executive Vice President and Provost at Temple University.

Klein was one of 6abc's earliest employees, and produced a number shows including Bandstand, which would go on to become American Bandstand with Dick Clark.

He also put Carter Merbreier on the air as Captain Noah and his Magical Ark.

6abc General Manager Bernie Prazenica spoke of Klein's work and the vast impact he's had here and around the country. But also, on a personal level.

"I was a student of his, at Temple back in the late 70's, and he was instrumental in helping me find my way in my career, and I've always looked towards him for advice," Prazenica said.

Klein, a Penn Graduate, began teaching TV courses at Temple in 1952. He was program director at 6abc when it launched its Action News format in 1970.

He's been an executive, a producer for Phillies telecasts, and through it all he's supported Temple as a benefactor, a teacher, and a mentor.

Today Lew Klein is in Florida receiving a lifetime achievement award from the National Association of Television Program Executives, which he co-founded.

The formal renaming ceremony will take place in March.
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