Sacred Heart University’s Ryan Matura Library is the new home of Peacock North Magazine, produced by the NBC network’s former broadcasters.
Former employees from NBC’s news, sports and entertainment divisions formed the Peacock North organization 30 years ago. It publishes a quarterly 35- to 40-page broadcasting magazine containing interviews about NBC and its alumni, written by people directly involved in broadcasting at the network. Marilyn Altman, president of Peacock North, said that when the original group of 30 people joined together in August 1987, their mission was to foster a continuing relationship with friends in the industry. The organization has grown to include more than 400 members today.
Joe Alicastro, a professor at SHU’s School of Communication, Media & the Arts, is a member of Peacock North and helped get the magazine archived at the Matura Library. Alicastro worked at NBC for more than three decades as a producer and now teaches broadcasting, journalism and multimedia news production at SHU.
Alicastro suggested to his colleagues at Peacock North that they give the magazine an academic home so it would be available to scholars studying the history of broadcasting. His NBC and SHU peers responded favorably, and Peacock North members donated the entire 30-year collection of periodicals to the library in May. Alicastro said the intention is to digitize the magazines so they are available to media scholars.
“It is gratifying to know that this wonderful treasure trove of information, personalities, events and historical perspective will live on at Sacred Heart University,” Altman said while she was at the Matura Library. “It is not easy to let go of this precious material unless one has faith that the institution in charge will do it proud. We at Peacock North feel that this material will be archived and treasured at SHU.”
The magazine is distributed to Peacock North members four times a year. The issues carry interviews with broadcasters such as Bob Costas, Lester Holt, Bryant Gumbel and many others. There are stories on NBC executives and the men and women behind the scenes who created the network’s broadcasting content for the past 50 years. The back pages include tributes to organization members who died since the previous issue. These tributes include detailed biographies and the contributions the individuals made to NBC’s broadcasting history, according to Alicastro. “Peacock North preserves the history of one of the three great American broadcast networks; it is broadcast history as written by the broadcasters,” he said.