Project SummaryThomas Taylor "Tom" Hammond was born in Lexington in 1944 and earned a degree in animal science with an emphasis in equine genetics from the University of Kentucky in 1967. He is recognized as one of the leading network sports broadcasters in the United States. He began his career with WVLK Radio as news and sports director, and joined WLEX-TV in 1970 where he remained for 10 years. He joined NBC in 1984 (Breeder's Cup) and became a fixture on NBC's Olympic Games coverage. Hammond's work includes Thoroughbred horse racing, the NFL, Notre Dame football, the NBA and WNBA, college basketball, gymnastics, figure skating and track and field.
Throughout the 1970s and 1980s, Hammond served as a sales announcer at the Keeneland Thoroughbred Sales as well as sales in 16 other states. Nationally, he is recognized as an expert on Thoroughbred pedigrees. He twice earned horse racing’s top honor, the Eclipse Award, and received an Emmy for his coverage of the 1992 Breeders' Cup. He has also won Emmys for his coverage of men’s and women’s basketball in 1988, track and field and diving in 1992 and Olympic track and field in 1996. During the 1980s, he also had controlling interest in Hammond Communications, which produced two weekly racing shows.
Hammond holds several awards and recognitions such as Outstanding Kentuckian Award given by the A.B. Chandler Foundation; a charter member of the Lafayette High School Hall of Fame; member of Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame, and the UK Hall of Distinguished Alumni. The Bluegrass Sports Commission gives an award annually in his honor: the Tom Hammond Lifetime Achievement Award in Sports Broadcasting.