Professor Emeritus


Douglas Gomery is the award-winning author of 21 books, and more than 600 articles on the history and economics of the mass media. His book, “The History of Broadcasting” is a standard in the industry and he is an acknowledged expert on the life and times of country western singer Patsy Cline.  Gomery taught in the Merrill College of Journalism from 1993 – 2005, when he was named professor emeritus. He is currently Resident Scholar at the Center for Visual and Mass Media at the University of Maryland Libraries.


Douglas Gomery was born in New York City on April 5, 1945 and grew up in Allentown, Pennsylvania. From 1963-1965 he attended Marietta College and in 2007 was granted an honorary doctorate. In 1967, he graduated #1 in his class (Phi Beta Kappa) from Lehigh University with a major in economics. He earned an MA in economics from the University of Wisconsin – Madison in 1970 and a Ph. D. in Communications Arts in 1975.

Gomery taught at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee 1974-1981 and then in College Park in Communication Arts from 1981-1992 before moving to what would become the Philip Merrill College of Journalism.

He was a visiting professor at Northwestern University, University of Iowa, New York University and the University of Utrecht in the Netherlands.

Gomery consulted with the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, the GAO and the FCC.
He authored the column “The Business of Broadcasting” for the American Journalism Review from 1995 to 2000.

His most recent books include: The FCC’s Newspaper-Broadcast Cross-Ownership Rule (2002), The Coming of Sound (2005), The Hollywood Studio System (2005), The Television Industries (2006), A History of Broadcasting (2008), and Patsy Cline: The Making of an Icon (2011).

Gomery was a member of the editorial boards of Journal of Film and Video, Journal of Media Economics, Screen, Journal of Broadcasting and Electronic Media, and Journal of Communication.

From 1986 to 1989 he was a member of the Board of Trustees of the American Film Institute. In 2007 he named a distinguished scholar by the Broadcast Education Association.

Gomery continues his historical research as Resident Scholar at the newly named Center for Visual and Mass Media at the University of Maryland Libraries. He is also the official historian of Celebrating Patsy Cline, based in Winchester Virginia and helped create the Museum: “The Patsy Cline Historic House.”