Former RCA Chairman Dies
Dec. 07, 1988
NEW YORK (AP) _ Thornton F. Bradshaw, the last chairman of RCA Corp. prior to its 1986 takeover by General Electric Co., died Tuesday night from a cerebral hemorrhage. He was 71.
Bradshaw suffered a cerebral hemorrhage Monday morning and died about 6:30 p.m. at New York Hospital, said Thomas B. Ross, senior vice president of NBC News, who formerly was senior vice president of corporate affairs at RCA.
Bradshaw was active until his death as chairman of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the philanthropy that makes so-called ''genius grants,'' large no-strings awards of money to encourage talented individuals to work on projects free of financial pressures.
Bradshaw served as chairman of RCA Corp. from 1981 to 1986, retiring after the merger with General Electric.
He spent most of his business career with Atlantic Richfield Corp., joining the oil company in 1956, when it was Atlantic Refining Co., and rising to president in 1964.
He was named to the board of directors of RCA in 1972 and moved over from Atlantic Richfield in 1981 to become the seventh chairman in the history of the broadcast and electronics corporation.
Bradshaw was born in Washington, D.C., and educated at Exeter Academy and at Harvard. He served in the Navy in World War II, earning seven battle stars before being discharged in 1945 as a lieutenant junior grade.
He taught at Harvard Business School following the war, then worked for Cresap, McCormick & Paget, a management consultant, from 1952 to 1956.
After retiring from RCA, Bradshaw remained on the boards of Atlantic Richfield and General Electric and also the boards of First Boston Inc. and Brooks Fashion Stores Inc., the Japan Society and the Rockefeller Brothers Fund.
He is survived by his wife, Patricia Salter West, and by Priscilla Page of Bryn Mawr, Pa.; Nancy Poor of Norwell, Mass.; and Jonathan Bradshaw of Newbury Park, Calif., the children of his 24-year first marriage, which ended in divorce in 1964.