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C-SPAN, which originally stood for Cable-Satellite Public Affairs Network, was the first United States cable television network dedicated to 24 hour-a-day coverage to national government and public affairs. C-SPAN often will show live sessions of the U.S. House of Representatives while in progress.

Brian Lamb, C-SPAN's Chairman & CEO, conceived of C-SPAN while working at the Cablevision company. It was created as a cable-industry financed, non-profit network for televising sessions of Congress.

C-SPAN first went on the air March 19, 1979. C-SPAN 2, a spinoff network, covers live sessions of the U.S. Senate and went on the air in 1986. Since 1979, the cable industry has invested US $230 million in the network.

Past chairmen include:

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