Patti Gace Smith will be remembered by many in the broadcast industry for the great work she did from 1980 to 1994 as the head of the FCC’s Consumer Assistance and Small Business Office, and later as Deputy Director for Policy in the Office of the Managing Director, and her work before that at the NAB from 1974 to 1980. However, for NABOB, Patti has a very special place in our history. While working at the NAB in 1976, Patti conversed separately with several African American radio station owners at the NAB Convention.
Patti realized from those conversations that these station owners had a similar problem trying to be accepted as valuable advertising outlets and having their African American listeners appreciated as valuable consumer targets. She also realized that most of these owners did not know each other, and they did not realize they all had the same problem. Patti suggested that they meet. They did. The result was the founding of NABOB!