50 Golden Moments

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1958 · Dr. Richard Bell, then director of the Radio-TV Bureau at ASU, applies for license with Federal Communications Commission (FCC).


· The Walter McCune Foundation of Scottsdale donates $88,000 in studio equipment and KVAR-TV (now Channel 12) offered to sell its aging transmitter, tower and antenna on South Mountain since the station was switching to high-power equipment.


· First day of broadcasting– January 30, 1961 – from the campus of Arizona State University.

· Honored with first Emmy Award for excellence in local programming.

1967 · Congress gives its mandate to the newly created Corporation for Public Broadcasting and its imprimatur for annual federal appropriations


· Purchased new studio cameras – local programs now  in “living color.” Among them Profile Phoenix.
· A local newspaper article headline reads “ASU Educational TV Station to Offer Experimental Program.” That program was Sesame Street. Premiered with raves from the public.
1973 · Station moves out of the trailer and into ASU’s new Stauffer Communications Arts complex.

First issue of UnderCover (later renamed KAET Magazine and Eight Magazine).

· Station seeks viewer support for programming for the first time. Suggested membership is $15. · PBS and Channel 8 broadcast the Watergate Hearings in its entirety.


· KAET’s American Indian Artists series premieres on PBS. May.
· First annual Channel 8 Great Fair at Fountain Hills draws 19,000 people. February. The event ran for the next eight years with more than 100,000 attending the last fair.
1981 · Coverage of Supreme Court nominee Sandra Day O’Connor’s Senate Confirmation Hearings. HORIZON premieres featuring attorney/ASU graduate Michael Grant. October.

· “The Operation” live open-heart surgery from St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center.  Bernard Schuler’s quadruple by-pass is performed by Dr. Ted Diethrich. February.

· KAET introduces more than 60 instructional video courses — eventually becomes the station’s educational outreach unit. September.


· KAET hosts a black tie “Dinner with Julia Child” at the Wrigley Mansion for Century Club members and community leaders. Portions of the event televised live.

· KAET’s Seasons of a Navajo premieres on PBS.

1985 · “Space Probe 8” debuts with live shots from Kitt Peak. October.

· KAET begins broadcasting many of its programs in stereo. First show in the line-up B.B. King’s “Let the Good Times Roll.” January.

· Broadcast of Pope John Paul’s visit to Phoenix and Sun Devil stadium. September.  · The Implant: Hip Replacement Surgery features Dr. Tony Hedley installing a new hip for patient Phil Demanovich.


· Historic, live, 170-hour five-and-a-half week coverage of Arizona Senate sitting as a court of impeachment. State Supreme Court Chief Justice Frank X. Gordon presides. February.


· KAET receives an Emmy Award for Impeachment coverage.

· Arizona Artforms, video portraits of the artists living among us, debuts.


· Thieves of Time premieres.
· Read Arizona, a series of one-minute video book reviews written and presented by Arizona kids, premieres.
· Violence in our Communities, a public forum with U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno, Senator Dennis DeConcini and U.S. Attorney for Arizona Janet Napolitano discuss solutions to the problems of gangs, drugs and crime. A co-production of KAET and South Mountain High School Communication Arts Department. · Live, gavel-to-gavel coverage of the public hearing and vote of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors to levy a sales tax to finance the construction of a baseball stadium.


· Local productions: Barry Goldwater: Photographs & Memories, Over Arizona, Arizona Memories, ASU Research Review, ASU’s Search for the New, Arizona Teacher of the Year, Books & Co. premiere.
1996 · First Arizona Presidential Preference Forum live broadcast from Gammage Auditorium, HORIZON’s Michael Grant serves as moderator. KAET receives Governor’s Award Emmy for coverage.

· Desert Wildflowers and Legends & Dreamers: Inspired by Arizona Highways premiere

· On Our Own Terms: Moyers on Dying. Response to the outreach project is overwhelming. Station fields more than 50,000 phone calls and fulfilled nearly 10,000 requests for information packets.
2001 · Digital signals 8.1, 8.2 and 8.3 launched. First station in Arizona to broadcast multiple programs at the same time on different channels.

· Arizona Memories from the ‘60s premieres.

· Designated a Ready to Learn station, providing free workshops throughout the Arizona community where adults, parents, educators and caregivers learn how to use television as a positive tool to introduce skills and ideas important to learning. · HORIZONTE, new weekly public affairs program, debuts. Phoenix attorney José Cárdenas named as host. Provides a forum for local and national issues viewed from a Hispanic perspective. October.


· Monumental Arizona premieres. March.
· Native Visions: A one-hour special bringing together heads of state, policy makers, community leaders, government officials and healers for a look at educational and healthcare issues faced by Arizona’s Native Americans. May.
· Arizona Lodges: The High Country premieres. August.
· First season of Arizona Stories premieres.
· Encounters with Young Musicians, a community program that brings talented high school musicians into schools, gives students exposure to classical music.
2007 · Michael Grant hosts his last HORIZON after more than 25 years. January. · Groundbreaking for the future home of Eight and ASU’s Cronkite School at the corner of Central and Fillmore in Phoenix as part of ASU’s new downtown campus.

· Ted Simons takes over as new host of HORIZON. January.

· First Be More Awards presented to Arizona non-profits. May.
2009 · Digital transition deadline extended from February 17 to June 12. KAET sets the station’s transition date for midnight April 29.

· Ask a Financial Counselor debuts as the first in Eight’s Ask a An Arizona Expert series premieres. Professionals take questions from viewing audience.

· Antiques Roadshow in Phoenix – More than 6,000 weather Arizona’s summer temperatures for a chance to meet with Roadshow appraisers. August. · Station moves broadcast signal from ASU Tempe campus to new facility at ASU’s downtown Phoenix campus. December.


· HORIZON’s first broadcast from the new building on Central and Fillmore. January.

Media Contact:  Colleen O’Donnell Pierce
[email protected]
(602) 496-0579
(602) 478-3867 (cell)
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