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Virginia Leaders: Pat Robertson Changed 'the Entire World' Through Regent, CBN, Operation Blessing

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Virginia is where it all started for Pat Robertson. From the moment CBN went on the air from a small station in Portsmouth, to the founding of Regent University and Operation Blessing, the Old Dominion has played an integral part in Pat's vision for global evangelism.

"I tell you what, the man is an icon, he's part of the DNA of this great city," says Virginia Beach Mayor Bobby Dyer.

Dyer says Pat's decision to plant CBN and other organizations, including Operation Blessing and Regent University, has been a continual blessing to the city. "You know, I think in some ways CBN, and Regent, is one of the best-kept secrets," Dyer told CBN News. 

Dyer, who says he's known Pat for over 30 years, is in awe that 62 years after CBN sent out its first television signal from that small UHF station in Portsmouth that the ministry continues to influence people in his city and around the world.

Honoring Pat Robertson, 1930-2023: Witness to a God-Sized, World-Changing Dream

"When you think about it, right here in Virginia Beach the impact this man and his organization had on the entire world, not just our great country, but the entire world, through Operation Blessing and the many, many good things that a lot of people didn't know Pat Robertson did for so many people," Dyer remarked.

In 1977, Pat founded CBN University – later renamed Regent University – to equip Christian leaders to change the world. It has become one of the leading institutions of higher learning in the state and the country.

Former Virginia Congressman Randy Forbes says the history of Regent is a testament to Pat's commitment to excellence, innovation, and integrity.

"This is a special place where people who believe and have faith like Pat can come and thrive and also realize that they can bring excellence to everything that they do," Forbes said.

Regent University started with just 77 students and today boasts 34,000 alumni serving in key leadership roles around the world.

***For more information on the life and ministry of Pat Robertson, please visit To watch his biblical teachings and learn about the God he loved and served, visit In lieu of flowers, the family asks you to visit to make a memorial gift.***

Forbes says Pat's obedience to build an institution for the Lord's glory is one of his lasting legacies.

"The Lord blessed Pat in doing that, but you also have to realize that Pat was faithful and committed and he sold out everything he had to make sure that he was being obedient to the Lord and this is the fruits of it," Forbes said.
"Pat set a really very high standard and I tell you what, he's going to be missed but he's going to be remembered, and his legacy will continue by the good acts of people living in Virginia Beach, this Commonwealth, this nation and this world," Mayor Dyer added. 
Virginia's Gov. Glenn Youngkin is also honoring Robertson after learning about his death, calling him an "inspiring Virginian" and a "passionate servant of the Lord."

"Pat Robertson was an inspiring Virginian and a passionate servant of the Lord whose lifelong example leaves a legacy matched by very few," Youngkin said in a statement. 

"I was grateful for the time we shared together just last year at Regent University's commencement. While Suzanne and I are praying for the Robertson family, CBN family, and Regent family during this difficult time, we also know heaven is rejoicing this morning," he concluded. 

Funeral Service to Celebrate the Life of Pat Robertson 

We hope you'll join us next Monday, June 19, as we honor and remember Pat Robertson with a memorial service. It will be streaming on the CBN Family App beginning at 12 p.m. Eastern.

***For more information on the life and ministry of Pat Robertson, please visit To watch his biblical teachings and learn about the God he loved and served, visit In lieu of flowers, the family asks you to visit to make a memorial gift.*** 

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About The Author

Thomas *

Reportero senior de CBN News George Thomas es corresponsal internacional senior y co-presentador de noticias de CBN News. Desde 1996, ha reportado desde más de 85 países abordando una amplia gama de historias internacionales. Desde escenas del conflicto en Oriente Medio, África y el Sudeste Asiático hasta terremotos y tsunamis en China, Japón, Taiwán, Chile, Haití, Indonesia y Sri Lanka, Thomas ha tenido un asiento de primera fila en numerosos eventos mundiales de nuestros días. Después de los ataques terroristas del 9-11 contra los Estados Unidos, Thomas tuvo varias giras de reportajes en