Michigan State’s Rick Church Named 2014 Recipient of SVG College Sports Summit Pioneer Award

The Sports Video Group is pleased to announce that Rick Church, director of broadcast technology at Michigan State University, will be honored with the 2014 SVG College Sports Summit Pioneer Award on May 28 during this year’s summit at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Atlanta.

Rick Church

Rick Church

Church has been with the Spartans since 1979, when he began as a part-time employee of the Athletic Department. Joining the staff full-time in 1998, he started and directed the Spartan Vision big-screen program.

“I am honored and humbled to win the Pioneer Award this year,” says Church. “Teaching our students to become the next generation of video professionals has been an extremely satisfying way to advance the world of college sports video.”

With the advent of the Big Ten Network in 2006, Church took over the role of network liaison between MSU Athletics and the day-to-day running of BTN on campus. He now handles all remote broadcasts with all networks from campus. He also initiates all research and development of all broadcast infrastructure at all Athletics Department facilities on campus.

“We are very excited to honor Rick with this year’s Pioneer Award,” says Brandon Costa, program director of the SVG College Sports Summit. “Rick is a tremendous talent and has always been generous with sharing his time and expertise with the industry at large. As an active leader in the sports-video community, he has had a tremendous impact well beyond the gates of Michigan State’s campus.”

During his years as a part-time Spartan, Church worked with the Detroit Tigers as director of scoreboard operations from 1992 to ’98. Before that, he spent nearly two decades with the Detroit Red Wings as director of scoreboard operations.

“Rick has been a visionary, turning the  Michigan State University campus into a hotbed of next-generation technologies and workflows,” says Ken Kerschbaumer, executive director, editorial services, SVG. “But he has also been a leader outside of MSU, making him a worthy recipient of the Pioneer Award.”

Throughout his career, Church has been a highly engaged member of the sports-video community. He serves as a member of the SVG College Advisory Committee and the SVG Venue Initiative Committee.

He graduated with a B.A. from Ohio University in 1975 and received an M.A. from Michigan State in ’79.

SVG College Sports Summit Pioneer Award Honorees
2014: Rick Church, Michigan State University
2013: Mark Rodin, Florida State University
2012: Ken Norris, University of California, Los Angeles

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