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David D. Smith


David SmithSince January 2017, David D. Smith has served as executive chairman of Sinclair Broadcast Group Inc., one of the largest television operators in the nation. The Hunt Valley-based company operates 190 television stations across 88 markets, with affiliated stations with ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX, and CW.

Before assuming his current position, Smith, whose father founded the business in 1971, served as chairman of the board since September 1990 and president and CEO from 1988. Between 1984 and 1990, Smith worked as general manager of WPMY-TV (formerly WPTT-TV) in Pittsburgh.

He is also the founder of Comark Communications Inc., a company engaged in manufacturing high-power transmitters for UHF television stations, where he served as officer and director until it was sold to Thomson S.A in 1986.

In 2018, Sinclair was thwarted in its bid to buy Tribune Media’s 215 stations, a move that would have created the nation’s largest owner of broadcast stations and, given Sinclair’s full-throated conservative emphasis in its new coverage, would have made it perhaps the strongest conservative voice in the nation.

Instead of the acquisition, Sinclair was slapped with a $48 million fine by the Federal Communications Commission for, among other things, its hardball tactics in attempting to aquire Tribune Media.

Smith serves on the board of directors for The American Flag Foundation Inc., Keyser Investment Group Inc., and Atlantic Automotive Corporation, one of the largest car dealerships in Maryland.

This profile is part of The Daily Record's Power 100 list for 2021. Information used in this profile was sourced from the honoree. See the full list at or in our digital edition.