Ronald Reagan & GE

A legacy of progress

Long before he changed the world, or led a nation, or governed a state, Ronald Reagan inspired our company with his optimism, entrepreneurial spirit and belief in innovation.

From 1954 to 1962, Ronald Reagan served as host of a popular Sunday evening television program called General Electric Theater. During that time he also spent ten weeks each year traveling the country as GE's roving ambassador. By the time the show concluded its eight-year run, Ronald Reagan, by his own account, had visited 139 GE research and manufacturing facilities. He walked the plant floors, toured offices and met over 250,000 individual employees, honing his renowned communications skills and leaving a unique legacy that continues to inspire our company today.

GE Theater Video

The General Electric Theater

Zsa Zsa Gabor and Ernest Borgnine star in a 1961 episode of General Electric Theater, Budd Schulberg's "The Legend That Walks Like A Man."

The General Electric Theater

Tony Curtis stars in "The Stone," a 1959 episode of General Electric Theater hosted by Ronald Reagan.

The General Electric Theater

Ronald Reagan introduces the season five finale of General Electric Theater, “A New Girl in His Life.”

Ronald Reagan on GE Theater

Ronald Reagan and “General Electric Progress Reporter” Don Herbert explain exactly what they mean when they say, “At General Electric, progress is our most important product.”

Ronald and Nancy Reagan on GE Theater

Ronald and Nancy Reagan invite the GE Theater audience into their new home for a tour and to demonstrate how their GE heat pump helps keep their house comfortable year round — electrically.

Ronald and Nancy Reagan on GE Theater

Join Ronald and Nancy Reagan for a tour of their new home to see how their many new electric appliances are helping them "live better electrically."

Ronald and Nancy Reagan on GE Theater

Join Ronald and Nancy Reagan for a tour of their new entertainment system that brings music, drama and news into their home.

Slideshow

1954 — Ronald Reagan visiting GE’s research lab in Niskayuna, New York.

1954 — Ronald Reagan signing autographs at GE’s research lab in Niskayuna, New York.

1954 — Ronald Reagan visiting GE’s research lab in Niskayuna, New York.

1954 — Ronald Reagan visiting GE’s research lab in Niskayuna, New York.

1954 — Ronald Reagan visiting GE’s tube department in Owensboro, Kentucky

1955 — Ronald Reagan visiting a GE plant in Danville, Illinois.

1955 — Ronald Reagan visiting a GE plant in Danville, Illinois.

1955 — Ronald Reagan visiting a GE plant in Danville, Illinois.

1956 — Ronald Reagan talking to GE employees in Schenectady, New York.

1957 — Ronald Reagan posing with a GE locomotive in Erie, Pennsylvania.

1957 — Ronald Reagan observing a chemist working at GE’s foundry laboratory in Erie, Pennsylvania

1957 — Ronald Reagan watching aluminum being molded at GE’s foundry laboratory in Erie, Pennsylvania

1957 — Ronald Reagan inspecting a jolt pin lift machine, used for making the cope or top half of an aluminum mold at GE’s foundry lab in Erie, Pennsylvania.

1957 — Ronald Reagan observing the pouring of malleable castings at GE’s foundry lab in Erie, Pennsylvania.

1959 — Ronald Reagan taking a moment to pose with GE employees in Schenectady, New York.

Progress Reports

Nancy Reagan

Thank You GE

Nancy Reagan reflects on her family's long relationship with GE.