Blake Byrne, the co-founder of Argyle Television, died Sunday morning at the age of 83. Barbara Schwan, executive director of The Skylark Foundation, told the Hollywood Reporter on Monday that Byrne died peacefully in his sleep at his home in the Hollywood Hills.

Byrne founded The Skylark Foundation — a philanthropic family enterprise that funds art, education, environmental protection and services for women, the elderly and gay and lesbian youth — in 1995. He contributed to the society with much of his earnings. In 2005, he made a huge donation to the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles.

"Blake was a great friend, a generous philanthropist, dedicated activist and a passionate art collector. He was a tremendous supporter of the @NasherMuseum and you can see his imprint all over the collection. Miss you Blake," his friend Trevor Schoonmaker wrote on Twitter.

Another of his friend, James Jacquet‏, penned a long tribute on Instagram: "I want to pay tribute to a friend @blake.byrne who I just learned passed away yesterday. We met over 10 years ago in London, UK at some mutual friend’s dinner party and immediately hit it off through of our love for art. We had different sensibilities yet @blake.byrne was so knowledgeable and well known in the World art community. He took me to galleries and mentored me to show me how to appreciate the mediums even more. This student decided to impress his teacher by arranging a private tour with the curator of the @calderfoundation exhibit at @lacma when he casually mentioned he had a mobile in his vast and enviable collection. My ability to arrange this tour was the single time I saw him envious and a little annoyed until I reminded him it was at his suggestion that I’d become so involved and connected ... I’ll miss his friendship, wisdom, generosity, and wicked sense of humor. RIP, dear friend."

Byrne, who was born on July 2, 1935, in Columbus, Ohio, came to Los Angeles in 1989 to become president and general manager of KCAL-9 — an independent television station. In just three years, he co-founded Argyle Television in Los Angeles and San Antonio. He later merged its stations with those of the Hearst Corp. in 1997.

 Blake Byrne
MOCA trustee Blake Byrne attends the LACMA 50th Anniversary Gala sponsored by Christie's at LACMA in Los Angeles, April 18, 2015. Getty Images/Jonathan Leibson

Byrne received his bachelor of arts degree from Duke University in 1957 and an MBA from Columbia University in 1961. The same year, he joined CBS in New York as a sales executive. He also worked at stations in Portland, Oregon, and Providence, Rhode Island, before becoming president and general manager of KXAS-TV in Fort Worth, Texas. In 1982, he became the group vice president of television for KXAS owner LIN Broadcasting.

His most recent role was as the chairman of the Byrne Acquisition Group, a company formed by his son John Byrne. This company owns TV and radio stations in Wisconsin and South Carolina.

In 2005, Byrne gifted 123 works to Los Angeles' Museum of Contemporary Art in what was the largest private donation in the history of the museum. He also donated pieces to The Nasher Museum on the Duke campus in Durham, North Carolina; to the Fort Worth Art Museum; and to Centre Pompidou in Paris.

Bryne is survived by his son, daughter, Jocelyn; daughter-in-law, Charlotte; and grandchildren John Morris, James, Lily, Oliver, Benito and Diego, according to the Hollywood Reporter.