‘Tennessee Crossroads’ producer Ken Simington dies at 64

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Simington behind the scenes at Nashville Public Television. (Photo: NPT)

Simington behind the scenes at Nashville Public Television. (Photo: NPT)

Ken Simington, executive producer of the Nashville Public Television show Tennessee Crossroads, died Aug. 30 at his home after a fall. He was 64.

He began work on the program as segment producer at the show’s launch in October 1987 and rose to executive producer a few years later. Tennessee Crossroads is the most-watched local production in public television, according to NPT, airing on stations in that state as well as Kentucky and North Carolina.

Simington “was a consummate professional,” the station said in a statement, who will be remembered for “a terrific sense of humor, a knack for storytelling and a green thumb when it came to homegrown tomatoes.” He first joined NPT, then WDCN, in 1979 as a studio supervisor.

Over the years Simington received 16 Regional Emmy nominations for director and magazine programs, and won in 2006 for Living On: Tennesseans Remembering the Holocaust. He also served as a governor of NATAS Nashville/Midsouth Regional Emmys.

He was a graduate of Arkansas State University with a bachelor’s degree in radio/TV and received his master’s in visual arts from Southern Illinois University.

Beth Curley, NPT president, called Simington “the granddaddy of NPT’s production staff.”

“Ken loved every minute of his work, as viewers would witness every week,” she said in a statement, adding that he was “beloved by all of our staff.”

He is survived by his wife Janice, two sons and grandchildren.

NPT produced a tribute video: