- The Media School Distinguished Alumni Award (2016)
- Distinguished Alumni Service Award (1979)
Robert Horton Shanks is one of the most innovative and celebrated people in modern television. He writes and produces programs for all the major networks through his company, Comco Productions, Inc. His natural talents for speaking, writing, and producing were recognized as early as his high school days; he won the national Voice of Democracy contest.
While studying at Indiana University, he gained experience in many aspects of the dramatic and communicative arts, and co-authored the 1954 Jordan River Revue. Shanks moved to New York and began working his way up in studios, from coffee boy to writer, talent coordinator and producer, and was ultimately named Vice President for specials and early morning programs for the American Broadcasting Company. He developed the highly acclaimed series "Good Morning America" among many other distinguished programs and specials.
Shanks has been honored with numerous top prizes from the television and film industries, and is the author of an outstanding television textbook adopted by most university communications schools. Always a thoughtful, articulate spokesman for television and its relevance in American society, he has shared much of his experience and talent, lecturing at leading universities and encouraging young performers and production people.