A Life History

Bernard Mayes, teacher, administrator, corporate executive, broadcaster, actor and dramatist, is a former international commentator on U.S culture, daily life and sciences. He obtained degrees with honors in ancient languages and history at Britain's Cambridge University where he rowed crew.

He worked first as a High School teacher of Latin, Greek and History. After this he was ordained as a Church of England priest and worked in the House Church movement. He later emigrated to the United States and became an Episcopal worker-priest and Director of a Student House attached to N.Y.University, before moving to the Diocese of California where he held a parish near San Francisco.

During this time he was also a prolific broadcaster for the BBC and other networks and in 1968 helped organize the Public Broadcasting system in the U.S., becoming a founding chairman of National Public Radio. He was a top executive in both radio and television stations and became the senior management consultant for the Advisory Service of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting in Washington D.C., advising universities and communities across the country.

His commitment to social welfare was first shown when he conducted research in the London slums and later, in San Francisco, designed and directed the first system of suicide and crisis counselling centers in California, later used as a model throughout the U.S. and for which he was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award.

Always an activist for the rights of gay, Lesbian and transgendered people, he organized a sexuality study center for the Episcopal Diocese of California which became a "Jubilee Ministry" of the national church. In 1991 he also co-founded the Lesbian, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transexual Faculty, Staff and Graduate Student Association at the University of Virginia.

For many years he was on the faculty of Stanford University's Summer Communications Institute. As President of an educational consortium he was twice a guest of the government of Australia.

In 1984 he was invited to the University of Virginia in Charlottesville where he became Chairman of the the Department of Rhetoric and Communication Studies and eventual designer of the Media Studies Program. From 1991 to 1999 he was appointed a Dean in the College of Arts and Sciences and remains an academic Fellow of Brown College. In 1993 he was a national citizen delegate to Russia and the Czech Republic. In 1998 he received the University's Harrison Award for mentoring and in 1999, a special award from the University's '"7" Society.

His dramatic works have been nationally distributed. They include: Homer's Odyssey, the Agamemnon of Aeschylus and Plato's Phaedo, each adapted from the original greek; J.R.R.Tolkien's Lord of the Rings; several of Dickens' novels. He received an award from the for the National Endowment for the Arts for a dramatization of the life of Thomas Jefferson, being part of a trilogy presenting the lives of the first three American Presidents. His recorded readings of historical classics are nationally available.

His articles and academic papers cover a broad range of subjects including religion, the media and social criticism. An illustrated collection of his lighter broadcast pieces has been published and his life philosophy "Escaping God's Closet" is to be published in 2001 by the University Press of Virginia.

He is listed in Who's Who in America, Who's Who in Religion, and Who's Who in Entertainment and lives in Washington D.C. .

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Email Bernard: bdm3g@gateway.net
Last updated: Thursday, 07-Sep-2000 22:53:41 EDT