Thomas Cookerly, former President and General Manager of ABC affiliate WJLA-TV in Washington, D.C., has died at the age of 94.
In 1978, Cookerly became President of the Broadcast Division of Allbritton Communications and was responsible for running multiple TV and radio stations. He was also active in the Washington community, serving on the Boards of the Prevention of Blindness Society, the Washington Home, the Federal City Council and the United Way. He also served on the Fifth District Federal Reserve Board and on the Board of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
In addition, Cookerly started The Neediest Kids (TNK)-a charity whose purpose is to help students who, through no fault of their own, were not reaching their full potential because of the lack of financial resources and basic necessities. Initially started within the D.C. school system, TNK (now part of the National Center for Children and Families) currently works with ten regional school districts, representing over 800,000 students across 1,140 schools in the DMV area. The Tom Cookerly Exceptional School Superintendent Leadership Award is presented annually to a school leader who best works to remove barriers to achievement for students affected by poverty.