After college, Price was in Los Angeles. He began to implement his dream of sailing by making an offer on Herreshoff’s personal yacht, Clara. It was designed and built in 1887, double hulled, a beautiful 35’ auxiliary ketch. Unfortunately, the survey reported serious problems, too costly for his resources. The boat has now been refurbished and is in the Herreshoff museum in Connecticut.
The dream was cut short by a career move to Indianapolis, but picked up again in Chicago. Price sailed a 24’ wooden sloop out of the Loop harbor. This little boat, with only a cuddy cabin and fin keel, took her crew all over southern Lake Michigan.
In New York, Price purchased a Contest 25, a sturdy Dutch built boat. Cygnet sailed to ports in Long Island Sound, Block Island, Martha’s Vineyard, Nantucket and many harbors in between. In 1984 Price purchased a Dufour 34. Wind Dancer expanded sailing horizons to Provincetown, Boston, Marblehead, Gloucester, Portsmouth and Maine, including the Vinal Haven Islands and Monhegan.
Since 1996, Price has sailed Wind Dancer on Lake Ontario, visiting almost every port on the Lake and in the Thousand Islands. He also sailed from Cape Canaveral, Florida to Newport, RI, riding the Gulf Stream north on a Pearson 44. All told, Price has spent a total of over three years “before the mast.”
Qualifications to Write on Spirituality
Nelson Price has been involved in media his entire career as executive, writer and producer. Most recently he served as president and CEO of the Odyssey Television Channel, now the Hallmark Channel. Odyssey was launched in 1987 as an interfaith cable network that would present programs of faith, values and spirituality. The network presented programs featuring Nelson Mandella (his first appearance in the U.S. after his release from prison), Tony Campolo, President and Mrs. Clinton, Archbishop Tutu, Ellie Wiesel among dozens of others.
The National Interfaith Cable Coalition, with 68 denominations and religious organizations as members, sponsored the network. Protestant, Catholic, Orthodox, and Jewish groups were represented. Price also served as NICC president and CEO. It was the largest interfaith organization in the country.
Price served as a communications officer for the United Methodist Church nationally with offices in New York City. He shot documentary films in China, India, Africa and the U.S. He was executive producer of an eight-part series on “endings and beginnings” that aired on most PBS stations. Entitled “Begin with Goodbye,” the thesis was that in order to move on in life after a tragic loss, one had to say “goodbye.” Losses included death, loss of a part of one’s body, terminal illness, divorce, children leaving home and moving, among others. Screen and stage actor Eli Wallach hosted.
In radio, Price was executive producer of the first national radio call-in program, “Night Call.” It aired each weekday night on a network of over 100 radio stations in rural to urban markets. Special equipment had to be designed to handle a three-way conversation on air. The program launched immediately following the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. to “help heal a tormented nation.” Callers interacted with the host, Del Shields, and a prominent guest, persons who ranged from Bill Cosby to Black Panther leaders. As many as 40,000 calls were placed to the program in a single night.
In the 1970’s there was great concern over the effects of television violence on children. Price was one of the founders and served as President/CEO of the Media Action Research Center, Inc. Dr. Robert Liebert, a professor at the State University of New York at Stony Brook, was the scientific director. Children were tested in a MARC laboratory to determine the effects of both violent and pro-social TV scenes. A curriculum was developed, “Television Awareness Training,” to train teachers and parents about the social effects of television on children.
Price wrote Making Faith Visible on Television, published by Friendship Press, 1998. He authored many articles for national religious publications
These are several of the highlights of Price’s career, working in the media and with religious organizations and religious leaders. While working with religious organizations and denominations, he was on his own spiritual journey. The Spirit Sail book is a part of that adventure.
Price has four adult children and 14 grandchildren. He is married to Barbara Croll Fought, a professor of law and broadcast journalism at Syracuse University.