Roger Ailes, the ousted chief of Fox News who built the network into a conservative empire and became a kingmaker for the Republican Party before being pushed out last summer, died on Thursday May 18 2017, according to a statement from his wife, Elizabeth Ailes, that was published by Fox News. Fox News confirmed his death in an on-air report.
Born in Warren, Ohio, U.S.A., 15 May 1940. Graduated from Ohio University, Athens, Ohio, BA. 1962. Began television career as property assistant, The Mike Douglas Show, KYW-TV, Cleveland, Ohio, 1962; producer, 1965; executive producer, 1967-68; media adviser to Richard M. Nixon Presidential campaign, 1968; founder Ailes Communication, a media production and consulting firm, 1969; producer, Broadway plays, Mother Earth, 1972, Hot-L Baltimore, 1973-76; producer, various television specials, 1974-82; media Consultant, Ronald Reagan Presidential Campaign, 1984; George W. Bush Presidential Campaign, 1988; various senatorial and Congressional campaigns; president, CNBC, cable television network, 1993-96; president and program host, America's Talking, and all-talk cable television network, 1994-96; chair and chief executive officer of FOX News and the FOX News Channel, from January 1996. Honorary Doctorate, Ohio University. Recipient: Obie Award, Best Off-Broadway Show, 1973; Emmy Award, 1984.
Mr. Ailes’s interest in broadcasting was ignited at Ohio University, in Athens, where he worked on the college radio station before graduating in 1962.
There, he met Marjorie White, the first of his three wives. Their 17-year marriage ended in 1977. His second wife was Norma Ferrer, a television producer, but that union ended, too, in 1995, after 14 years. His third wife, Elizabeth Tilson, was a program director at CNBC. They were married in 1998 at New York’s City Hall in a ceremony presided over by Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani, a former Ailes political client.
In 2000, with the birth of a son, Zachary, Mr. Ailes became a first-time father at nearly 60. His survivors include his wife and son as well as an older brother, Dr. Robert J. Ailes.