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Entertain Your Curiosity with PBS Reno

kurt pbs spotlight

For 39 years, PBS Reno has been our region's Public Broadcasting Service station, reaching 67,000 households and nearly 113,000 weekly viewers. As the region’s only PBS member station, they reach all of northern Nevada and northeastern California. Now with three broadcast channels, a content-rich website, and streaming platforms accessible from anywhere, the educational and informational programs can be seen anytime and in any place.

“PBS Reno is the only television station with a regular schedule of educational workshops presented in pre-kindergarten through 4th grade classrooms in our service area,” President and CEO Kurt Mische said.

As with most businesses and organizations during Covid-19, the business model has changed significantly over the last two-plus years. “With so many of our team working from home, our leadership team works harder on coordinating work and staying in touch with our team. We continue to allow work from home and will continue to do so if goals are met/exceeded. Staying connected with our donors and partners also takes some extra steps as we could not hold in person events for a long time. Even though we can do those events in person again, some are more cautious about in person gatherings. That puts the responsibility on us to reach out and connect with them,” Mische said.

Keeping up with technology, as it changes more frequently now, and the costs associated with those technology changes are a constant challenge. “We have revised our operating plan to allow for more frequent --and expensive--equipment replacements. Gear that used to last many years now goes out of work more quickly. Think about your cell phone or your computer, for example. Now multiply that by dozens of computers, cameras, editing bays, field cameras, lights…and you get an idea of what I mean,” Mische said.

“The other big challenge is the many platforms on which content is available. We must make sure our content is there all the time! It is less important that Antiques Roadshow airs Monday night at 8pm…it is vitally important that people know they can access that program anytime on their device. And of course, over the air broadcasts still exist so we must remind people about our on-air schedules, too. “

For 13 years, when Mische came to the Truckee Meadows to lead PBS Reno, they have co-sponsored and presented the Family Estate Planning Series with the Community Foundation, and nearly 2,400 people have attended and benefitted from these classes. “We also admire the initiatives that the Foundation has undertaken and the overall awareness and education they provide about philanthropy. Those benefit everyone in our region. I especially admire the work the Foundation is doing in the affordable housing space. The Sage Street project is masterful, and I hope more initiatives like that are forthcoming,” Mische said.

PBS Reno is involved with many organizations on a regular basis. An excellent example is their annual Spotlight Awards, which is much like Oscar Night for the not-for-profit community. On a personal note, Mische serves as a board member of California Public Television (due to serving northeastern California) and the Nevada Broadcasters Association, is an active member of the Rotary Club of Reno and is involved at his church.

In addition to being an avid golfer, he and his wife are parents and grandparents and enjoy time with family as well as raising and showing collies for more than 30 years, including taking one to a championship.

“We are fortunate to live and work in a very giving, involved community. People here have been taught the importance of giving and supporting community organizations and not-for-profits by earlier generations. This is a valuable tradition that does not happen automatically, nor does is happen in all communities--I know from personal experience. And they give not only financially, but enthusiastically as volunteers and board members,” Mische said.