F Baxter Ricard (1905-1993)

Richard F. Baxter
F Ricard Baxter

Year Born: 1905

Year Died: 1993

Year of Induction: 1999

Baxter Ricard became a broadcaster in 1947 when he obtained a licence to establish in Sudbury, Ontario, the first bi-lingual radio station outside of Quebec – CHNO. Ten years later, in 1957, he created a precedent when he was granted a licence to own and operate two AM stations in the same city. CHNO became an all-English station, with CFBR (later CHYC) wholly devoted to use of the French language. 

In 1972, Baxter initiated Northern Cable, a cable television service for Northern Ontario. Through cable and broadcasting networks, he was instrumental in delivering specifically to areas not served by off-air stations, programming services in both official languages. 

In 1980, Baxter acquired TV stations in Sudbury, North Bay, Timmins and the Ottawa Valley under the masthead Mid-Canada Communications. His radio holdings in Ontario were expanded in 1985 with the creation of Mid-Canada Radio. 

Throughout his life, Baxter Ricard served his community by actively participating on hospital, educational and institutional boards and service clubs. In 1980, he received the Central Canada Broadcasters’ Association’s “Howard Caine Public Service Memorial Award”, and in 1987 was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Laws by Laurentian University. In 1990, he was the recipient of the Ontario Business Award “Entrepreneur of the Year”. 

Dr. F. Baxter Ricard died in 1993. Posthumously, in 1999, he was inducted into the CAB Broadcast Hall of Fame.