Prestholdt Odgen, born 04-05-1917 in Minneapolis, MN, died 02-01-2003 in Minneapolis. Long time resident of New Rochelle and Ardsley, NY, Potomac, MD, and Venice, FL. Preceded in death by his wife, Ruth. Survived by 2 sons, John (Kathy) of Edina, MN and Richard (Elaine) of Bridgewater, NJ; and 4 grandchildren, Rebecca, Lisa, Erik and Tara. Odgen was well known in the radio antenna and transmitter fields. He was the first director of technical operations at the yet to broadcast WLOL radio after his graduation from the University of Minnesota in 1938. He brought the station into the air in June 1940. He moved to New York as a network engineer for the Columbia Broadcasting System (CBS) in 1943, eventually becoming Director of Radio Engineering in 1960. He worked in both radio and TV engineering including rebuilding the original WCBS channel 2 TV transmitter on the Chrysler building in New York, and later creating a TV transmitter on top of the Empire State building in 1952. This transmitter was available and used after the 09-11 incident. In 1965 he created a combined radio transmitter facility for both the CBS and NBC radio stations in New York City. He left CBS to join the A.D. Ring consulting firm in 1969 where he continued to design and patent changes in antenna and transmitter design. These included designing antenna systems to allow radio signals to "go around" nearby buildings, including an antenna system in Minneapolis. He retired to Florida in 1985 where he continued to work on special projects for selected clients. He was a 50+ year member of the Institute of Electrical & Electronic Engineers (IEEE) having been honored as a Life Fellow of the Institute and receiving their Prestigious Centennial Medal Award. In 1996 he received the Engineering Achievement Award from the National Association of Broadcasters. He was also a member, and past president of the Association of Federal Communications Consulting Engineers (AFCCE). He published and presented several technical papers on antenna design at IEEE and NAB conferences, and held two U.S. Patents. Burial will be at Lakewood Cemetery in Minneapolis with a memorial service later in June or July. Cremation Society of MN Edina 952-924-4100
Published on February 9, 2003
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