Dr. M. G. "Pat" Robertson is founder, chancellor and CEO of Regent University. He provides wisdom and direction on such matters as the vision and mission of the university, its scope and its direction.
Recognized and awarded for his visionary accomplishments in broadcasting and many other arenas, he will continue to contribute to the university's mission of Christian leadership and will oversee a new campus master plan that he developed for Regent, with specific attention to the continued growth of the university's undergraduate and graduate online and on-campus programs, and the university's overall global impact.
Marion Gordon "Pat" Robertson was born on March 22, 1930, in Lexington, Virginia, to A. Willis Robertson and Gladys Churchill Robertson. His father served for 34 years in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate. Robertson's ancestry includes
Benjamin Harrison, a signer of the Declaration of Independence and governor of Virginia, and two United States presidents, William Henry Harrison and Benjamin Harrison, the great-grandson of the signer of the Declaration of Independence. Robertson also shares ancestry with Winston Churchill.
After graduating with honors from McCallie School in Chattanooga, Tennessee, a military prep school, Robertson entered Washington and Lee University in 1946, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. In 1948 he enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve. After graduating magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree from Washington and Lee in 1950, Robertson served as the assistant adjutant of the First Marine Division in combat in Korea. He was promoted to first lieutenant in 1952 upon his return to the United States. Robertson received a Juris Doctor degree from Yale University Law School in 1955 and a Master of Divinity degree from New York Theological Seminary in 1959.
In November 1959 Robertson left New York with his wife, Dede, and their three children and drove to Tidewater, Virginia, where he planned to buy a bankrupt UHF television station in Portsmouth. Arriving with only 70 dollars in his pocket, Robertson proceeded to raise the finances to purchase the station. CBN was formed on January 11, 1960, and on October 1, 1961, CBN went on the air for the first time.
Robertson is the author of nineteen books including:
- The New World Order, number four on the New York Times's non-fiction list of America's best-selling books and number-one religious book in America in its year of publication
- The Secret Kingdom, number three on Time Magazine's national non-fiction list and number-one religious book in America in its year of publication
- Answers to 100 of Life's Most Probing Questions, number-one religious book in America in its year of publication
- Right on the Money: Financial Advice for Tough Times
- Miracles Can be Yours Today
- Courting Disaster
- The Ten Offenses
- Bring It On
- Six Steps to Revival
- The Turning Tide
- The New Millennium
- The End of the Age, his first fiction work
- And others
Numerous governors, state legislators and mayors have recognized Robertson's humanitarian efforts with citations. Just a few of his honors include:
- Humanitarian of the Year, 1982, by Food for the Hungry
- Man of the Year, 1988, by Students for America
- Christian Broadcaster of the Year, 1989, by National Religious Broadcasters
- One of America's 100 Cultural Elite, 1992, Newsweek Magazine
- Defender of Israel Award, 1994, by the Christians' Israel Public Action Campaign
- Cross of Nails Award, 2000, for his vision, inspiration and humanitarian work with The Flying Hospital
- The State of Israel Friendship Award, 2002, by the Chicago chapter of the Zionist Organization of America
- New York Theological Seminary Distinction in Ministry Award, 2009
- Induction to the Hampton Roads Business Hall of Fame, 2009
- Winston Churchill Lifetime Achievement Award, 2013, by Faith & Freedom Coalition
- Lifetime Achievement Award - 25th Silver Anniversary Movieguide Awards, 2017
Robertson is past president of the prestigious Council on National Policy. In 1982 he served on President Ronald Reagan's Task Force on Victims of Crime. He previously served on the Board of the Virginia Economic Development Partnership and on the Governor's Council of Economic Advisors in the State of Virginia. Robertson founded and served as a past president of the Christian Coalition of America until his resignation in late 2001.
Pat and Dede Robertson have four children, 14 grandchildren, 14 great grandchildren, and reside in Virginia Beach, Virginia.
M.G. "Pat" Robertson has achieved national and international recognition as a religious broadcaster, philanthropist, educator, religious leader, businessman and author. He is the founder and chairman of The Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN) Inc., and founder of International Family Entertainment Inc., Regent University, Operation Blessing International Relief and Development Corporation, American Center for Law and Justice, The Flying Hospital Inc. and several other organizations and broadcast entities.
CBN was founded in 1960 as the first Christian television network established in the United States. Today CBN is one of the world's largest television ministries and produces programming seen in 200 nations and heard in 70 languages including Russian, Arabic, Spanish, French and Chinese. CBN's flagship program, The 700 Club,
can be seen in 97 percent of television markets across the United States and is one of the longest-running religious television shows that reaches an average of one million American viewers daily.
Operation Blessing International Relief and Development Corporation (OBI), founded by Robertson in 1978, is a non-profit relief and development organization with a mission statement "to demonstrate God's love by alleviating human need and suffering in the United States and around the world." OBI has touched the lives of more 193.1 million people in 96 countries and all 50 U.S. states, distributing more than $1.2 billion in goods. To help break the cycle of suffering, OBI implements programs that focus on the primary goals of providing hunger relief, medical aid, disaster relief, and community development that will make a significant, long-term impact on those in need.
Robertson was the founder and co-chairman of International Family Entertainment Inc. (IFE). Formed in 1990, IFE produced and distributed family entertainment and information programming worldwide. IFE 's principal business was The Family Channel, a satellite delivered cable-television network with 63 million U.S. subscribers. IFE, a publicly held company listed on the New York Stock Exchange, was sold in 1997 to FOX Kids Worldwide, Inc. for $1.9 billion. Disney acquired the FOX Family Channel in 2001 and named it ABC Family.
Regent University was founded in 1977 by Robertson, who serves as chancellor and CEO. Regent is a fully accredited graduate university that offers degrees in business, communication and the arts, divinity, education, government, law, leadership and psychology and counseling. In addition, Regent offers a growing undergraduate program. Regent University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, GA 30033-4097 : Telephone number 404-679-4501) to award the bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees. In addition to the main campus in Virginia Beach, Regent offers programs online.
Robertson is founder and president of the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), a public interest law firm and education group that defends the First Amendment rights of people of faith. The law firm focuses on pro-family, pro-liberty and pro-life cases nationwide.