Janice Wendell Bethany|
March 14, 1939
New Brockton, Alabama, U.S.
May 31, 2016 (aged 77)|
Orlando, Florida, U.S.
|Occupation||Co-founder of Trinity Broadcasting Network|
|Title||Vice President and Director of Network Programming/TBN, Director/CEO of Holy Land Experience|
(m. 1957; his death. 2013)
Early life and ministry
Crouch was the daughter of Reverend and Mrs. Edgar W. Bethany, and grew up in Columbus, Georgia. Her father served as an Assemblies of God pastor, and was the founding president of Southeastern University (Florida). While attending Evangel College in Springfield, Missouri, Crouch met Paul F. Crouch. They married in 1957, and have two sons, Paul Jr. and Matthew, both of whom are high-ranking officials and program hosts on TBN. Jan Crouch also loved children and was well known in the early days of TBN for a child's puppet (a little pink girl in a dress) she called Babushka. The color of this puppet and her love for children is often attributed to the fact that she went from wearing her larger than life platinum blonde wigs to pink ones.
In 1973, Paul and Jan Crouch co-founded Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN) along with Jim and Tammy Bakker. In 1974, TBN purchased its first TV station, KLXA-TV (channel 40, now KTBN-TV) in Southern California, and began distribution through cable systems in 1978. Under the Crouch family, TBN grew to become the United States' largest Christian television network, offering 24-hour commercial-free programming, and TBN is currently third largest over-the-air Station Group in the United States (measured as percentage of homes reached), with CBS, Fox, and NBC holding the 4th, 5th and 6th place, according to TV News Check's annual listing of the Top 30 Station Groups. TBN owns and operates five independent TV networks, each of which adheres to a faith-based message, but reaching separate demographics. TBN networks include TBN itself, JUCE TV, TBN Enlace, Smile of a Child, and The Church Channel.
Growth of TBN
Since its founding, Crouch served as TBN's vice president and director of network programming, as well as the director of programming for TBN's affiliated networks, such as the Smile of a Child children's channel, the JUCE TV youth network, The Church Channel, the TBN Enlace USA Spanish language network, and others. She was also the President and manager of The Holy Land Experience theme park in Orlando, Florida. Jan Crouch and her husband Paul Crouch, senior also signed off on Matt Crouch (TBN) and his wife Laurie—now in charge @ TBN, i.e. PTL (Praise the Lord) their signature & original show, as now becoming rather the primary hosts, as well as Behind the Scenes— to have produced over 4 plus major motion pictures, along with other associated and film entertainment groups to make namely Faith-based movies like 'End Times' films The Omega Code (1999) and its sequel Megiddo: The Omega Code 2 (2001).
In March 2012, Crouch was accused by her granddaughter, a former employee and chief finance director of the network (a registered charity), of misappropriating network funds to spend on a lavish lifestyle. Expenditures included expensive homes, private jets, massive custom wigs, and a $100,000 air conditioned mobile home solely for her dogs. The New York Times wrote that Crouch, for nearly two years, rented adjoining rooms for herself and her two Maltese dogs at the deluxe Loews Portofino Bay Hotel while she was building the Holy Land Experience theme park in Orlando, Florida. The suit includes allegations that Jan had an affair with a Holy Land Experienceemployee.
Also in 2012, another of Crouch's granddaughters sued TBN, alleging that she had been molested and raped by a TBN employee at the age of 13. She alleged that Jan Crouch screamed at her and blamed her for the assault. The employee was subsequently fired but was never reported to authorities. Crouch's lawyers said the network was attempting to cover it up to prevent a scandal, but a spokesperson for the network said they acted on what her mother had told them to do. In 2017, a year after Crouch's death, a jury award the granddaughter $2 million in damages for past and future "mental suffering."
Illness and death
Awards and honors
- 1990: Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree from Oral Roberts University
- Golden Angel Award – Excellence in Media
- Two-time Parents Television Council Entertainment Seal of Approval recipient (for TBN and Smile of a Child).
- Matthew "Matt" Crouch narrating https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ByNKEjua4xE June 15, 2016
- "The BRIDGE – March 2009 – Programming Trends & Top 10s". Mediabiz.com. Archived from the original on January 22, 2010. Retrieved February 8, 2013.
- "Heavenly success: TV's largest religious network continues to expand around the world, while adding shows aimed at reaching a much wider audience (30th Anniversary)". Highbeam.com. Retrieved February 8, 2013.
- "Top Station Groups Stay The Course". TVNewsCheck.com. April 7, 2010. Retrieved February 8, 2013.
- "Smile of A Child TV". Smile of A Child TV. Retrieved February 8, 2013.
- "Juce TV". Retrieved 15 September 2016.
- "A New Digital Network From TBN, the Leader in Religious Television". The Church Channel. Retrieved February 8, 2013.
- "Enlace Televisión Cristiana". Retrieved 15 September 2016.
- "Florida Department of State Division of Corporations Detail by Entity Name". Retrieved 1 August 2011.
- "TBN Networks Affiliates – TBN". Tbnnetworks.org. December 10, 2009. Retrieved February 8, 2013.
- "TBN Films". Retrieved 15 September 2016.
- "A Path Appears", p. 177, Nicholas Kristof and Cheryl WuDunn
- Teri Sforza (February 23, 2012). "Suit: 'Cover-ups of sexual and criminal scandals' at TBN". Orange County Register.
- Stevens, Matt (June 7, 2017). "Jury Finds Televangelist Jan Crouch Shunned Granddaughter's Report of Rape". The New York Times. Retrieved September 26, 2017.
- "Update on Condition of TBN Co-Founder Jan Crouch". Retrieved 15 September 2016.
- Shawn A. Akers (May 27, 2016). "TBN's Jan Crouch Suffers Massive Stroke, Family Praying for a Miracle". CharismaNews. Retrieved May 27, 2016.
- Trinity Broadcasting Network Co-Founder Jan Crouch Dies at 78 After Suffering Massive Stroke, christianpost.com; accessed June 6, 2016.
- "TBN Awarded Seal of Approval by Parents Television Council". Parentstv.org. February 28, 2008. Retrieved February 8, 2013.