LITTLE ROCK — Dale Nicholson, president and general manager of KATV for more than three decades, died Saturday night at his home, the Little Rock television station reported Sunday.

Nicholson, who began his broadcasting career at KTVE in El Dorado in 1960, was 74. He joined KATV in 1962.

Nicholson was very involved in the station’s long-running relationship with athletics at the University of Arkansas and UA athletics director Jeff Long said in a statement that Nicholson "helped shape television in our state."

"When I first met Dale it was clear he had a tremendous passion for the Razorbacks and for serving the people of Arkansas," Long said. "He was instrumental in the success of our longtime partnership with KATV, a partnership which allowed fans throughout the state to follow the Razorbacks. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Nicholson family and his many friends and colleagues at KATV and around the state."

Nicholson was honored for 50 Years in television by the National Association of Television Arts and Sciences with the Gold Circle award. The station celebrated his aniversary last year.

He received an honorary doctorate from Philander Smith College and had been bestowed numerous humanitarian awards.

Nicholson is survived by his children, Kelli Miller and Nick Nicholson, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.