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KPHO-TV Phoenix Arizona







Outlook for engineers »»»»»»»»»»)

WHENEVER SOMEONE ASKS my advice about a career in broadcast engineering, I try to analyze the factors that induced me, and others, to enter and stay in this fascinating, challenging, and most satisfying field.

The broadcast engineer is first of all a slave to his insatiable desire to work with the electronics of radio and television. Added to this is his desire to use his knowledge and expend his efforts in an atmosphere of excitement, and topping them all off is his faculty and enthusiasm for mastering new devices in the electronic art. All these are motivating factors for the broadcast engineer; they explain his aptitude and love for his job.

True, broadcasting is a field whose very name suggests an aura of glamour, excitement, and fame. But there are few fields where this aura is so solidly backed by several supporting "behind-the-scenes" groups. Engineering is one of the most important of these groups and, historically, the forerunner of all other broadcasting activities. The strict principles of science upon which engineering invention, development, and operation are based are what make the broadcasting industry with its facilities as we know them today possible. It is in the accomplishment of the technical necessities of broadcasting that the engineer gets his reward, for here he has the opportunity for technical creativity, the sense of accomplishment in team effort, mastery of complicated electronic equipment, and the solution of challenging problems.

What types of work do engineers do? There are several kinds that need to be done within any engineering department. They are varied and require people of different technical abilities and temperaments. Individual stations may differ slightly in the department to which they assign cameramen or film projectionists, but for the most part, engineering departments include transmitter engineers, audio and video engineers, technical directors, and maintenance engineers.

The transmitter engineer is usually an individual of quiet temperament who prefers to work alone or in a small group. He has highly technical knowledge of the transmitting equipment under his care. His day is usually uncluttered and unpressured, and he is content to carry out routine duties of operation and maintenance, confident of his ability to handle under pressure any occasional emergency.

The audio engineer, or control operator, has to be able to keep in mind a multitude of ever-changing details on an audio console or control panel. He must be mentally alert and quick thinking, have fast reactions, and keep his head in times of emergency. He must listen to instructions and simultaneously be aware of the program under his control. His operational ability is more important than his technical ability, for he is part of a team whose mis-coordination could be disastrous.

The video engineer is responsible for the operation of such video equipment as studio cameras and film and slide cameras. Since it is his duty to make necessary electronic adjustments prior to and during operation, he must have full knowledge of both operations and electronics. The technical director is the video counterpart of the control operator. His function is to coordinate and switch video signals; his requirements are very similar to those of the audio engineer.

The maintenance engineer is responsible for major electronic repair and construction of equipment. He is generally a meticulous individual whose concern is accurate detail rather than the quick decision.

These are the basic jobs. In one or more of them everyone must start. The more proficient will master all and, in addition to enjoying the satisfaction of accomplishment, will have taken steps toward advancement.

To those who feel that their daily job should be restricted to a nine-to-five schedule, who always want weekends off, who are unwilling to accept a daily routine filled with unpredictable periods of hectic activity, who cannot cope with intense pressure and responsibility, I would suggest a field other than broadcast engineering. All these are part of broadcasting. But I would not for the world discourage anyone who thinks he can cope with these problems, for the rewards of broadcast engineering are many.

What are the opportunities? As in most fields, they are limited only by the determination of the individual; this governs his interest, preparation, and initiative. The beginner should at least have a working knowledge of the fundamentals of electronics. He will acquire most of his information and experience on the job. Those who progress will eventually have an acquaintance with acoustics, optics, mechanics, photography, and other branches of science.

Those whose talents include leadership will find opportunities in supervision and administration. If your goal is high, an engineering degree is required. Those with more advanced education may find themselves involved in the development of new ideas, design of equipment or total plant facilities, solution of frequency allocation or radiation problems throughout the spectrum of frequencies from broadcast to microwave, or any number of similar projects.

This then is the field of broadcast engineering. It attracts people who have proved to be the most stable group in the entire industry. They are the most satisfied, self-sufficient, unassuming group you could know, and I'm happy to be part of it.


Careers in Broadcasting  1961
Author John H. Lerch (Editor actually)

a chapter on and by - 


Director of Engineering, Station KPHO Radio-TV, Phoenix, Arizona


Outlook for engineers »»»»»»»»»»)


Prelude- This book was contributed to SMECC by Buck Memorial Library Illinois Wesleyan University. It is a great 60's period book with all the careers listed in broadcasting and written by people like Goldenson of ABC, Sarnoff of NBC Lowell Thomas, Hugh Downs etc.... and as I look though I discover...GEORGE McCLANATHAN - Director of Engineering, Station KPHO Radio-TV, Phoenix, Arizon a with a chapter entitled "Outlook for engineers" 
The rights to this publication were owned  Appleton-Century-Crofts  who was a division of Meredith Publishing Company. (Yes the  same Meredith that owns KPHO!)
Well Meredith Publishing Company sold Appleton-Century-Crofts to Pearson Education....  I called Pearson and they showed no ownership of  book... but  they went to the contracts department and  found it was reverted back to  the author/editor John H. Lerch in  1974.
Well we can not find him or a  relation... We would like to  so that we can reprint the entire book. 

So... here is the part with our star Phoenix engineer in it!

We are looking for more to  add to as section to him on the SMECC website and to add  section with other engineers also..... drop us a note please.... and remember....



Ed Sharpe, Archivist for SMECC

See the Museum's Web Site at

We are always looking for items to add to the museum's display and ref. library - please advise if you have anything we can use.

Coury House / SMECC
5802 W. Palmaire Ave. Phone 623-435-1522
Glendale Az 85301 USA






From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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KPHO logo
Phoenix, Arizona
Branding CBS 5 (general)
CBS 5 News (newscasts)
Slogan Only CBS 5 (general)
Telling It Like It Is(newscasts)
Channels Digital: 17 (UHF)
Virtual: 5 (PSIP)
Subchannels See below
Affiliations CBS (1949-1953 and 1994-present)
Owner Meredith Corporation
First air date December 4, 1949
Call letters' meaning PHOenix
Former channel number(s) Analog:
5 (VHF, 1949-2009)
Former affiliations Independent (1955-1994)
NBC (secondary, 1949-1953)
ABC (secondary, 1949-1955)
DuMont (secondary, 1949-1955)
NTA Film Network (secondary, 1956-1961)
Transmitter power 1000 kW
Height 507 m (1,663 ft)
Facility ID 41223
Transmitter coordinates 33°20′3.3″N 112°3′43.1″W / 33.33425°N 112.061972°W / 33.33425; -112.061972

KPHO-TV, channel 5, is a CBS-affiliate television station located in Phoenix, Arizona, USA. KPHO-TV is owned by the Meredith Corporation, and has its studios located on Black Canyon Highway in the Alhambra Village section of Phoenix, with its transmitter located on South Mountain in Phoenix. KPHO extends its signal throughout northern Arizona by way of more than a dozen translators.



KPHO is Arizona's oldest television station, signing on December 4, 1949.[1] It was originally owned by a group of entrepreneurs—one of whom, John Mullins, would later launch KBTV (now KUSA-TV) in Denver, Colorado. The original group also included shareholders of Phoenix Broadcasting, which operated KPHO radio (910 AM, now KFYI at AM 550); the television station, originally known as KTLX, had its call letters changed to the current KPHO-TV shortly before it took to the air. It originally broadcast from studios at the Hotel Westward Ho in downtown Phoenix. The Meredith Corporation purchased the KPHO stations on June 25, 1952.[2]

As the only television station in Phoenix during the first three-and-a-half years of operation, it carried programming from all four networks of the time: CBS (primary affiliation), NBC, ABC and the now-defunct DuMont Television Network.[2] NBC disappeared from KPHO's schedule when KTYL-TV (channel 12, now KPNX) signed on April 23, 1953, followed by CBS when KOOL-TV (channel 10, now KSAZ-TV) signed on a few months later, on October 24. KPHO remained a dual ABC-DuMont affiliate (with ABC programming shared between KPHO-TV and KOOL-TV) until February 28, 1955, when KTVK (channel 3) signed on and took the ABC affiliation full-time. KPHO became an independent station when DuMont ceased network operations in 1956. During the late 1950s, the station was briefly affiliated with the NTA Film Network.[3] KPHO-TV lost its sister station when Meredith sold KPHO radio in 1971. That same year, channel 5 moved to its current facility on Black Canyon Highway.

As an independent station, channel 5 programmed a schedule of movies, off-network series, and a nightly newscast at 9:00 p.m. It also produced The Wallace and Ladmo Show, a children's show which aired weekday mornings from 1954 until 1989 (when it was decided by the stars of the show that it would end). During the 1970s, KPHO became a regional superstation available on cable in much of Arizona and New Mexico, as well as parts of California, Utah and Nevada.

KPHO logo, used from 1997 to 2002.

KPHO was the sole independent English-language television station in Phoenix until 1979, when KNXV-TV (channel 15) signed on with general entertainment during the day and subscription TV at night. (KNXV became a full-time general entertainment station by 1983.) Even though KPHO was the leading independent station in the market, the new Fox Broadcasting Company opted to affiliate with KNXV in 1986 after the E. W. Scripps Company purchased the station, promising to upgrade its syndicated programming and to launch a newscast. Although it never did begin a newscast, landing the Fox affiliation made KNXV a very strong competitor against KPHO. By the late 1980s, News 5, its news operation, comprised two newscasts: a weekday 11:30 newscast and Arizona's first primetime newscast at 9:30pm (years before KSAZ became a Fox station with a 9pm newscast).

KPHO logo, used from 2002 to 2008.

In 1994, as part of a massive wave of affiliation switches throughout the country, KSAZ announced it was dropping CBS in favor of Fox as a result of its pending sale to New World Communications. CBS briefly wooed KTVK, whose then locally-based ownership declined in hopes of renewing with ABC. CBS then approached KPHO, since it was the only non-Big Three station in town that had a functioning news department. On June 30, 1994, CBS agreed to a long-term contract with Meredith, allowing KPHO-TV to rejoin the network 42 years after CBS moved to channel 10. The centerpiece of the deal was a renewal of CBS's affiliation with Meredith's Kansas City station, KCTV; it also called for a switch at another of KPHO-TV's sister stations, WNEM-TV in Bay City, Michigan, to CBS from NBC.[4]. (The ABC affiliation eventually went to KNXV when Scripps cut an affiliation deal which called for four of that company's non-ABC affiliates to switch to ABC; KTVK then replaced KPHO as the market's main independent station.) Phoenix was one of just four television markets where the CBS affiliation moved from one VHF station to another during the 1994 affiliation switches.

KSAZ-TV evicted CBS on September 12, 1994 upon that station's sale to New World Communications becoming final. CBS then moved to KPHO at that time. Initially, KPHO continued to run a couple cartoons and a moderate number of sitcoms during local time. By January 1995, the cartoons were gone, and then the station gradually added more newscasts and talk/reality shows,[5] with the sitcoms being phased out and moved to KTVK, KUTP (channel 45), and KASW (channel 61). KPHO has generally been one of CBS's weaker affiliates after switching in 1994 due in large part to the station's lack of a strong inventory of syndicated programming although its 10 p.m. newscast took the lead among English-language stations in total households in the November 2009 sweeps period. In stark contrast, KOOL/KTSP/KSAZ had been one of CBS's strongest affiliates and was in strong second at the time of the switch.

On February 24, 2009 it was announced that KPHO-TV, KTVK and KPNX would share a helicopter starting March 1, 2009.[6][7][8]

On March 14, 2009, KPHO became the fourth station in Phoenix to switch to high definition newscasts.

On April 1, 2009, Fox Television Stations and E. W. Scripps Company announced the creation of the Local News Service model in the Phoenix, Detroit and Tampa Markets. The service pools news gathering efforts for general market news events. Each station provides employees to the pool service in exchange for the sharing of video.[9] KPHO-TV signed on to the Phoenix LNS model shortly after the announcement.[10]


KPHO is a typical CBS affiliate, clearing the entire network schedule and airing five hours of local news daily, complemented by syndicated fare and paid programming. KPHO airs one hour of local news at 5 p.m., so the CBS Evening News is shown at 6 p.m. instead of 5:30 p.m., when most CBS stations in the Mountain Time Zone air the network news. In addition, KPHO features the only 6:30pm local newscast in the Phoenix market. Better Arizona, a national daily lifestyle program, features locally-produced inserts. That program airs weekday mornings at 10 a.m., with The Price Is Right airing at 9 a.m. (one hour earlier than CBS's recommended time slot).

Digital television

KPHO's HDTV logo prior to 2008

Digital channels

Channel Format Programming
5.1 1080i KPHO-DT
5.2 480i Weather Now

Prior to 2009, a 5.3 subchannel was added for NCAA tournament coverage, with analog channel 5 breaking from 5.1 in order to create coverage of all four games.

KPHO switched its analog broadcasts to a digital nightlight service at 11:59 p.m. on 12 June 2009, just minutes before the end of the day mandated by the Federal government for TV stations to cease analog transmissions across the country. KPHO continues digital broadcasts on its pre-transition channel number, 17.[11][12] However, through the use of PSIP, digital television receivers display KPHO-TV's virtual channel as 5.

For 30 days after the switch to digital, KPHO's analog channels served as a "nightlight" station to remind TV viewers of the switch to digital.[13]

News operation

News/station presentation

Newscast titles

  • Today's News (1950s)
  • News in Focus (1950s)
  • 3-Star News Report (1950s)
  • Midday News/The 6 O'Clock Report (1970s)
  • Eyewitness News (1970s)
  • Channel 5 News (1980s)
  • News 5 (1980s-1990s)
  • Arizona 5 News (1990s-1996)
  • CBS 5 News (1996-2000 and February 2004-present)
  • TV-5 News (2000-July 2002)
  • News 5 (July 2002-February 2004)

Station slogans

  • 5'll Getcha (late 1970s)
  • 5 is the Place (early 1980s)
  • First in Arizona (mid 1980s)
  • Local, Live, Latebreaking (c. mid-late 1990s)
  • Be in the Know with KPHO (late 1990s)
  • Your Valley News Station (2002-2003)
  • Live. Latebreaking. Investigative. (2004-2009)
  • Telling It Like It Is (2009-present)
  • Only CBS 5 (2010-present; local version of CBS ad campaign)

Notable on-air staff[14]

Current on-air staff

 Current anchors
  • Catherine Anaya - weeknights at 5, 5:30, 6:30 and 10 p.m.; also reporter
  • Nicole Crites - weekday mornings and noon; also reporter
  • Pat McReynolds - weekday mornings and noon; also reporter
  • Peter Busch - Saturdays at 6, Sundays at 5:30 and weekends at 10 p.m.; also weeknight reporter
  • Sean McLaughlin - weeknights at 5, 5:30, 6:30 and 10 p.m.
 CBS 5 Valley Pinpoint Weather
  • Chris Dunn (AMS Certified Broadcast Meteorologist and NWA Seals of Approval) - chief meteorologist; weeknights at 5, 5:30, 6:30 and 10 p.m.
  • Paul Horton - meteorologist; weekday mornings and noon, also weekday morning co-host
  • Katie Baker - meteorologist; weekday mornings
  • Jason Kadah (NWA Seals of Approval) - meteorologist; Saturdays at 6, Sundays at 5:30 and weekends at 10 p.m. (also special reporter)
  • Steve Garry AMS Certified Broadcast Meteorologist- meteorologist; fill-in
 Sports team
  • Eric Sperling - sports anchor; weeknights at 5, 6:30 and 10 p.m.
  • Scott Smith - sports anchor; Saturdays at 6, Sundays at 5:30 and weekends at 10 p.m., also sports reporter
  • Jason Barry - general assignment reporter; also fill-in anchor
  • Elizabeth Erwin - general assignment reporter
  • Steve Filmer - general assignment reporter
  • Tammy Leitner - "5 Investigates" investigative reporter
  • Cara Liu - general assignment reporter
  • Morgan Loew - "5 Investigates" investigative reporter
  • Nadine Toren - morning traffic reporter
  • Pat McReynolds - general assignment reporter; also fill-in anchor
  • Donna Rossi - general assignment reporter; also fill-in anchor
  • Jadiann Thompson - general assignment reporter
  • Heather Moore - freelance general assignment reporter
  • Colton Shone - freelance general assignment reporter
 Helicopter pilots/reporters

(As part of a Local News Service the helicopter is shared with KTVK and KPNX and operated by Helicopters Inc.)

  • Scott Clifton
  • Jimmy Castanza
  • Tammy Rose

 Notable former on-air staff

Digital subchannels

On December 20, 2006, KPHO began broadcasting CBS 5 Weather Now on digital subchannel 5.2.[15] CBS 5 Weather Now is located on Cox Communications digital channel 85, Qwest Choice TV channel 64, and CableOne Digital channel 461.


KPHO is rebroadcast on the following translator stations:



  1. ^ "TV Transfers". 1972 Broadcasting Yearbook. Retrieved 2009-01-14.
  2. ^ a b "Early History of KPHO". KPHO-TV website. 2007-04-13. Retrieved 2008-12-01.
  3. ^ "Require Prime Evening Time for NTA Films". Boxoffice: 13. November 10, 1956.
  4. ^ "Meredith Shifts Stations to CBS." New York Times 30 June 1994; p6
  5. ^ Meisler, Andy (August 29, 1994). "Murdoch's Raid Brings a Shuffling of TV Stations in Phoenix". New York Times: pp. 2. Retrieved 2009-10-22.
  6. ^ "3 TV stations to share helicopter to cover the news". azcentral. February 24, 2009. Retrieved 2009-02-25.
  7. ^ "Channels 5, 3, 12 To Share Chopper". KPHO. February 25, 2009. Retrieved 2009-02-25.
  8. ^ "Phoenix TV stations to share news helicopter". KTAR. February 25, 2009. Retrieved 2009-02-26.
  9. ^ "Fox, Scripps Create Local News Service". Broadcasting & Cable. April 1, 2009. Retrieved 2009-05-28.
  10. ^ "Chicago stations join to share video crews for ENG". BroadcastEngineering. May 8, 2009. Retrieved 2009-05-28.
  11. ^ "DTV Transition Status Report". FCC CDBS database. 2008-02-04. Retrieved 2008-12-01.
  12. ^ "DTV Tentative Channel Designations for the First and Second Rounds". FCC CDBS database. 2006-05-23. Retrieved 2008-12-01.
  13. ^ "Phoenix TV goes digital, can you still see our signal?". KNXV-TV. Retrieved 2009-06-12.
  14. ^
  15. ^ "KPHO Phoenix launches 24-hour local weather channel". TVNEWSDAY. 2006-12-20. Retrieved 2008-12-01.

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