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Philo T. Farnsworth Society


KBYU Eleven is proud to honor the man who not only brought the world television, but also had a dream for its purpose.

Philo “Phil” T. Farnsworth, a Utah-born, Idaho farm boy, dreamed of trapping light in an empty jar and transmitting it one line at a time onto a magnetically deflected beam of electrons. By the time he was just 21, Phil had developed the first all-electronic television system. In addition to his contributions to television, he patented more than 130 inventions in his lifetime.

Eleven continues to recognize Phil for his contributions to the broadcast world. We believe in his dream that television can enrich, educate, uplift, and entertain.

What is the Philo T. Farnsworth Society?
The Philo T. Farnsworth Society brings together individuals who share Phil’s vision for television and who can help provide significant financial and nonfinancial support.

Generous society members offer tremendous support to Eleven with their charitable gifts of $1,000 or more annually. Their participation, which helps ensure that television will be used as a force for good, is vital to Eleven’s future.

The society has two main purposes. The first is to more appropriately recognize valued contributors who have both the vision and the means to support Eleven’s efforts in a substantial way. Second, the society offers a way to provide a significant source of annual funding that will help ensure continued excellence in programming and service to our statewide audience.

Phil Farnsworth had a vision of what television could accomplish; unfortunately, much of what is broadcast today fails to live up to his vision of uplifting, educating, and enriching lives.

Membership Privileges
Beginning in January 2010 society members will enjoy the following benefits:

  • Invitations to special events, including complimentary tickets to theater, musical, dance, and sports events
  • A subscription Eleven, our monthly program guide
  • A quarterly newsletter with behind-the-scenes insider information available exclusively to society members
  • Complimentary program guides for family members
  • Free DVDs, CDs, and online media
  • An invitation to the Philo T. Farnsworth Society’s annual reception

“Phil saw television as a marvelous teaching tool. There would be no excuse for illiteracy. Parents could learn along with their children. News and sporting events could be seen as they were happening. Symphonies would mean more when one could see the musicians as they played, and movies would be seen in our own living rooms. He said there would be a time when we could be able to see and learn about people in other lands. If we understood them better, differences could be settled around conference tables without going to war.” – Elma “Pem” G. Farnsworth (Phil’s wife)