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Mr. Fred Rogers
Fred McFeely Rogers (March 20, 1928 – February 27, 2003) was an American television personality, puppeteer, educator, composer, songwriter, author, and activist. Rogers was most famous for creating and hosting the educational preschool television series Mister Rogers' Neighborhood (1968–2001), which featured his kind-hearted, gentle, soft-spoken personality and directness to his audiences.
Born in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, near Pittsburgh, Rogers earned a bachelor's degree in music from Rollins College in 1951. He began his television career at NBC in New York, returning to Pittsburgh in 1953 to work for children's programming at NET (later PBS) television station WQED. He graduated from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary with a bachelor's degree in divinity in 1962 and became a Presbyterian minister in 1963. He attended the University of Pittsburgh's Graduate School of Child Development, where he began his 30-year collaboration with child psychologist Margaret McFarland. He also helped develop the children's shows The Children's Corner (1955) for WQED in Pittsburgh and Misterogers (1963) in Canada for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. In 1968, he returned to Pittsburgh and adapted the format of his Canadian series to create Mister Rogers' Neighborhood. It ran for 33 years, and was critically acclaimed for focusing on children's emotional and physical concerns, such as death, sibling rivalry, school enrollment, and divorce.