Ralph J. Roberts founded Comcast Corporation with the purchase of a 1,200-subscriber cable television system in Tupelo, Mississippi in 1963.
Prior to starting Comcast, Ralph was President and CEO of Pioneer Industries, a leading men’s clothing accessories company, Vice President of Muzak Corporation and an account executive with Aitken Kynett Advertising Agency.
Ralph graduated from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and served a four-year tour of duty in the U.S. Navy. He also participated in continuing education programs at Harvard Business School.
In 1942, he married Suzanne Fleisher, an aspiring actress from a well-to-do Philadelphia family. The couple celebrated 70 years of marriage in 2012. He and his wife had five children. Brian, born in 1959, was the fourth. Though his father called Comcast a “family business,” Brian was the only one of the children to show a serious interest in working with his father.
Besides his son Brian, Mr. Roberts is survived by his wife, the host of the Comcast Network program “Seeking Solutions With Suzanne,” aimed at viewers 50 and older; two daughters, Catherine Clifton and Lisa Roberts; another son, Ralph Jr.; and eight grandchildren. His son Douglas died in 2011.