Charles Benton

CEO and Chairman of the Benton Foundation

Since 1981, Charles Benton has served as the chairman of the Benton Foundation. The Foundation's mission is to articulate a public interest vision for the digital age and to demonstrate the value of communications by solving social problems. Among its current program priorities are projects on universal broadband/universal service, community media/community development and digital media access/inclusion.

Charles Benton has also had a long career in the media education and entertainment businesses as president or chairman of the Encyclopedia Britannica Education Corporation, Films Incorporated, Home Vision Entertainment, Lionheart Television International and Public Media, Inc.

In 1978, President Carter appointed him as chairman of the National Commission on Libraries and Information Science and as chairman of the first White House Conference on Library and Information Services, held in November 1979. In 1997, President Clinton appointed him to serve on the Presidential Advisory Committee on the Public Interest Obligations of Digital Television Broadcasters.

Throughout his career, Mr. Benton has been an active board member and adviser for organizations in the arts, education and communications. Currently these include service as chairman of the Partnership for a Connected Illinois and as a board member emeritus of the Educational Development Center in Boston and the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago. In April 2012, President Obama nominated him to the National Museum and Library Services Board.

A graduate of Yale University, Mr. Benton did post-graduate work at Northwestern University and the National College of Education and taught fifth grade at Washington Elementary School in Evanston, Ill. He is married to Marjorie Craig Benton and they have two children and five grandchildren.

People + Policy

= Positive Change for the Public Good

people + policy = Positive Change for the Public Good