About PBS North Coast

Our History: Milestones



  • Local public TV station becomes the dream of a small group of television pioneers who saw the need for an educational television station.


  • Redwood Empire Public Television Station (a.k.a. PBS North Coast) receives an endorsement by the California State Television Advisory Committee and top priority in the State of California to construct a new educational television station.
  • Donald Telford becomes the first Vice President and Director of PBS North Coast, establishing the first offices in the Humboldt County Schools office.


  • Redwood Empire Public Television Station plans 20 hours a week of instructional television for classroom use and five additional hours of cultural programming. PBS North Coast moves to downtown Eureka into a garage.


  • The Corporation for Public Broadcasting issues its first check to PBS North Coast. $10,000 later, PBS North Coast is on the air! The PBS North Coast studio is located in a garage in downtown Eureka. On April 14, 1969 PBS North Coast broadcasts its inaugural signal and thus becomes the 162nd public broadcasting station in the country. Transmission of programming was accomplished employing used equipment-- some donated and some borrowed -- which allowed PBS North Coast to broadcast with just fewer than 5,000 watts of power.


  • PBS North Coast broadcasts the first of many political forums hosted by the League of Women Voters of Humboldt County.


  • PBS North Coast studio moves to Sacred Heart School.


  • Fire-damaged studio on Humboldt Hill is donated to PBS North Coast. 7246 Humboldt Hill Road becomes station's new home. PBS North Coast broadcasts hearings on the expansion of Redwood National Park.


  • PBS North Coast is the first local station to use satellite technology to receive programming. General Manager St. Clair Adams joins PBS North Coast.


  • Ten Years! PBS North Coast celebrates its first decade of broadcasting.


  • The nation's first 60-minute newscast premiers as the MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour.


  • PBS North Coast airs its inaugural broadcast of the Rhododendron Festival Parade.


  • PBS North Coast receives a grant for a new transmitter and families in outlying areas begin to receive Channel 13.


  • "The Return of the King" is produced by PBS North Coast. The 30-minute documentary about salmon restoration efforts is distributed to PBS stations nationwide.


  • PBS North Coast's broadcast schedule is expanded to meet viewers' needs. Channel 13 now provides continuous programming from early morning to late night.


  • PBS North Coast broadcasts in stereo.
  • California's Gold with Huell Howser premieres.


  • 25th Anniversary. Then-Assemblyman Dan Hauser presents PBS North Coast representatives with a California proclamation congratulating the station on 25 years of service.


  • PBS North Coast begins broadcasting a second audio program (SAP) allowing the station to offer descriptive video services to the blind and those with low vision. The sight impaired can now hear descriptions of what is seen on the screen for programs including Nature and Masterpiece Theatre. PBS North Coast becomes one of only five PBS stations in California to reach out in this way to the blind.
  • PBS North Coast presents the first Reading Rainbow Young Writers and Illustrators contest. This is a national contest that encourages, challenges and rewards students from kindergarten through third grade who tell their own stories in their own words and their own pictures.


  • The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) establishes digital television (DTV) as the new technological standard in the 21st century.
  • In October the Corporation for Public Broadcasting grants funding to PBS North Coast to become a Ready To Learn station. RTL expands PBS North Coast's commitment to children's educational development with a series of workshops and resource materials designed for parents, care-givers and teachers using PBS North Coast children's programming.
  • In June PBS North Coast begins broadcasting 24-hours per day.


  • PBS North Coast purchases 64 acres on Kneeland Ridge to construct a new tower and transmitter for the digital conversion.
  • Channel 13's Ready to Learn program distributes its first book through the First Book literacy effort. This PBS-fueled project educates teachers, parents and child care providers how to use television as an educational tool rather than a pastime. The benefits of the program have caught on in recent years. Besides donating thousands of books to low-income families, Ready to Learn has also re-emphasized the theory that television, when used properly, can be of educational use within families and classrooms.
  • Northcoast Landscapes II: Water Concerto's produced and made available for sale. This program is the sequel to Northcoast Landscapes featuring some of the most beautiful aspects of our local environment.
  • PBS North Coast receives a Literacy award from the Humboldt/Del Norte Reading Council at their annual tea.


  • PBS North Coast becomes a local leader in researching DTV opportunities. Six PBS stations debut digital television. PBS North Coast makes history again by unveiling the North Coast's first-ever digital television demonstration. Reporters, board members and community leaders pack into the studio to see first-hand the technological marvel of DTV.
  • PBS North Coast expands its services to the sight impaired by using its second audio channel to broadcast readings of local newspaper articles with the help of the Reading Service of the Redwoods. The blind and those with low vision now access 25 to 30 news articles each week through PBS North Coast services.
  • Living Biographies premiers in August. This on-going series enabled PBS North Coast to preserve the stories and bits of local history provided by the elder citizens who participated.


  • Celebrate! PBS North Coast reaches its 30th anniversary. A group of the station's inaugural members help celebrate. St. Claire Adams, General Manager of PBS North Coast announces his retirement. After 20 years with PBS North Coast he came to personify public television in our community and, when in public, he was frequently called "Mr. PBS North Coast".
  • PBS North Coast produces the first interactive live, on-line television program on the North Coast with "Our Schools Our Solutions". This one-hour interactive program explored the solutions for stopping school violence with an all teen panel. Live productions continue with two forums on Measure J - Rezoning of Eureka's Balloon Track.
  • PBS North Coast receives a Bronze Telly Award for "Foster Care Outreach".
  • In December PBS North Coast welcomes its new Executive Director Ronald Schoenherr.


  • PBS North Coast receives grants from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, PG&E, and the PBS Democracy Project for "Teen Vote 2000". This year long effort focused on educating teens about the voting process and its importance in a democracy. It also allowed teens to cast their ballots at special polling places on election day. The effort culminated in a live program hosted by teens on election night comparing their votes with those of the adults.
  • "Engineering Is Everywhere: Secrets of North Coast Wonders" debuts. This program was part of PBS North Coast's community outreach which paired local civil engineers with 7th and 8th grade classes, after school programs and the Eureka Teen Center. The engineers shared hands-on activities with the students, discussed engineering careers and information about local structures.
  • "The Spirit of Giving" debuts which put the spotlight on local philanthropists. Inspired by a national summit on philanthropy, PBS North Coast produced this program which shared the stories of volunteerism and charitable giving in our community.
  • As a companion piece to the national broadcast of the four part series "On Our Own Terms: Moyers On Dying", PBS North Coast produced "Isn't It Time we Talked About It?" a North Coast discussion about death and dying. This program was a part of a long term project in association with Hospice of Humboldt and other community organizations.


  • PBS North Coast kicks off its first Capital Campaign "Focus On the Future" to raise funds for a digital transmitter. The total cost for the digital conversion may be as high as $4.6 million.
  • PBS North Coast receives $494,769 from the Public Telecommunications Facilities Program (PTFP) towards the digital transmitter and tower.
  • PBS North Coast receives $230,000 from the California State Office of Emergency Services to be used toward the digital conversion.
  • PBS North Coast receives a regional EMMY nomination for its program "Engineering is Everywhere".


  • August sees the compeletion of the new broadcast tower, a major component of the station's conversion to digital.
  • PBS North Coast also was awarded the Area Agency On Aging's Annual Media Award for the production ofAnd Thou Shalt Honorwhich addressed issues of caregiving.
  • Every 15 Minutesreceives a Bronze Telly award. This half-hour program chronicled the Every 15 Minutes drunken driving prevention program at Fortuna High School.
  • PBS North Coast and the League of Women Voters presented 12 forums for the November election, the most ever produced in one season.
  • PBS North Coast purchases property in Eureka at the foot of T street. This is to be the new home for the PBS North Coast studios.
  • PBS North Coast is recognized by the Northwest Committee for Employment of People with Disabilities for the stations on going efforts to provide information to the visulally impaired.


  • In partnership with College of the Redwoods, PBS North Coast provides the Annenberg Channel to air on C/R's cable channel 8. The Annenberg Channel offers professional development courses for educators K - 12 and other education programs.
  • PBS North Coast is awarded two grants totaling $499,165 to purchase a digital transmitter and a video server.
  • PBS North Coast is first in the broadcasting community to begin transmitting a digital signal.


  • PBS North Coast celebrates 35 years of sevice on the North Coast.
  • PBS North Coast is awarded a $350,548 USDA Public TV Digital Transition Grant to help finance conversion to digital broadcasting in rural Humboldt and Del Norte Counties.
  • As a companion piece to the national PBS program THE FORGETTING, PBS North Coast producesTaking Care: Alzheimer's On the North Coast, a documentary offering caregiving and resource information for families living with Alzheimer's Disease. In addition, PBS North Coast launched the Humboldt Count contingent of Pet Partners, and animal assisted therapy program in partnership with the Eureka Alzheimer's Resource Center and the Sequoia Humane Society.
  • In partnerhip with the Eureka Adult School and Tu Casa, PBS North Coast creates the New Americans Resource and Opportunity Fair.


  • In an effort to encourage exploration of our beautiful surroundings, PBS North Coast producesHiking Humboldt's Backyard Trails, a nature-walk program featuring the Humboldt Wildlife Sanctuary, the Manila Dunes, Trinidad Tiedpools and Mad River Bluffs.
  • PBS North Coast receives funding from the Benton Foundation, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the California Endowment, Humboldt Area Foundation and Union Labor Health Foundation to conduct a multi-generational, multi-media awareness and prevention campaign on the effects of methamphetamine use on our community.
  • PBS North Coast producesIN CASE OF EMERGENCY featuring a panel of local emergency experts who discussed how Humboldt County is prepared to handle natural disasters and what families can do to prepare for such a crisis.
  • PBS North Coast dedicates Sunday evenings to programming by Native Americans.


  • PBS North Coast launches the live weekly series,HomeWork Hotline. Teachers from dozens of local schools and hundreds of students from all over Northwestern California participate.
  • PBS North Coast producesLIFE AFTER METH: Facing the Northcoast Methamphetamine Crisis, which receives a Silver Telly Award. PBS North Coast staff work with students at Zoe Barnum Hight School to produceSPEAK UP: The Truth About Teens and Methamphetamine. Outreach partners, KHUM-FM receive an Edward R. Murrow Award for their radio documentaryPicking Up.
  • PBS North Coast begins the monthly screening and discussion seriesFirst Thursday Film Night at the Morris Graves Museum of Art.
  • PBS North Coast is one of only six PBS stations in the country to four consecutive years of receive funding from the Fetzer Institute for the Campaign For Love and Forgiveness, which features facilitated conversations, forums, theatre pieces, TV and radio testimonials, a museum exhibit, curated art show, mini-grant program, and digital storytelling training.
  • PBS North Coast is the presenting station ofKITKA AND DAVKA: Old and New World Jewish Music.


  • PBS North Coast begins broadcast of second digital channelPBS North Coast WORLD.
  • PBS North Coast producesORIGINAL PATRIOTS: Northern California Indian Veterans of World War IIAs a companion piece to the national PBS program THE WAR.
  • PBS North Coast conducts art history outreach with the Northcoast Masters painting contest and exhibition at the InkPeople Center for the Arts, as well as art history courses at the Morris Graves Museum and the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute.
  • KHSU-FM begins simulcasting PBS North Coast's candidate forums.
  • PBS North Coast's local programs are made available om www.keet.org for viewing on-demand.


  • PBS North Coast erects a digital broadcast tower in Smith River, CA to provide public television to Del Norte and Curry Counties.
  • PBS North Coast's Ready To Learn Service is awarded at $20,000 sustained partnership grant from First 5 Humboldt.
  • Ready To Learn begins the PBS North Coast Kids Club monthly family arts workshops at the Morris Graves Museum of Art.
  • In collaboration with the Water Safety Coalition of Northwestern California, PBS North Coast produced 5 water safety public service announcements addressing a range of issues specific to the North Coast.
  • PBS North Coast is the presenting station forASSIGNMENT EARTH,a series of environmental journalism.
  • PBS North Coast begins streaming local candidates forums live on www.keet.org.


  • Stay tuned for upcoming programs North Coast Visionaries, a documentary on local social entrepreneurs, and North Coast Cuisine, a cooking show series featuring chefs from fine restaurants throughout Humboldt County.