Denis Ryan Memorial Scholarship Fund

Donations to the Denis Ryan Memorial Scholarship Fund will continue Denis' legacy of sharing knowledge that advances the profession of audio engineering. All donations will be used to create audio recording scholarships. These scholarships will be awarded to students who attend the Conservatory of Recording Arts and Science (CRAS). Like Denis, CRAS is dedicated to creating opportunities for young people who are looking to pursue a career in the recording arts.

Denis' life and character is remembered by his close friend Derrell Harman.

Denis Ryan, my best friend and the best audio guy I’ve ever known!!! 

 And he was “that” guy…  Denis would do everything in his power to make sure you had what you needed to feel happy, successful, or at peace. That could mean a glass of sweet tea, a cup of coffee, a bite to eat, or a safe place to lay your head. He was one of the kindest, most caring souls I have ever met.  

For those that knew Denis you can see that sheepish grin and hear him saying, "what are you guys doing?'  Well Denis, we’re creating a place we can go to and keep you with us. A place to return some of the generosity you gave to us all.  

Denis’s talent was his ear. I’m told it is a family trait. His brother and sister have it too. You know there is a country saying for those with great eyesight, "They can see fly crap in black pepper." Well Denis could hear fly farts in a hurricane!!! He was after all a country boy, from Oneonta, Alabama. 

Denis’s passion was capturing, reproducing and recording the best sound possible. 

Here is a direct quote from him: "As sports production continues to evolve, keeping up with new technologies such as Dolby Atmos is very important to deliver content to the audience that can rival cinema audio practices," explained Denis Ryan, Senior Audio NBC, NBCSN NASCAR, ABC/ESPN Indycar. "Consumers expect to hear the same quality of sound from a live production that they hear in theaters."  

Denis’s gift to all of us was sharing those sounds, but most of all, sharing his knowledge with anyone who wanted to pursue the same passion. And creating opportunities for anyone he could.  

We would like to make his legacy the latter. Providing young individuals with a passion for audio production access to financial assistance to attend CRAS, the Conservatory of Recording Arts & Sciences. Denis career spanned 25+ years. 

He started as a young man while attending Lee College in Cleveland mixing sound at North Cleveland Church. While there he got noticed by the folks at PTL network who offered him the opportunity to move to Charlotte where he put the primary studio show for the network on the air for several years. Denis next move was to Nashville where Kevin McManus convinced him to come work in his studio. He spent a few years there as a studio recording engineer before ultimately returning to live television and traveling the world.

While traveling the world and providing Emmy winning mixes for all the networks, Denis was always doing whatever was needed by anyone around him. He was recruited to travel to Brazil where they had no knowledge of how to do television. He taught them how to use the telephone wire to carry sound from long distances back to the control room. Story goes he may have even smuggled some hardware for this purpose…  

Denis went out of his way to create opportunities for young people on the jobs he worked. Whether they wanted to get into the business or he thought they might want to if they had exposure to his world. 

Denis was always open to his peers if they had a question, he had no secrets. Always happy to share how and why he did things.  

That is the way he was in every aspect of his life. Caring, giving and doing whatever was needed for the most people to succeed. Denis was a friend to all and best friend to many.

The world is in need of more people like Denis. Thank you for all you have done, you have giant shoes to fill and we will do our best to continue your legacy.

— Derrell Harman

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