Springfield, MO

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Five Questions: Paul Windisch

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After more than 10 years with Clear Channel Radio, Paul Windisch has moved to TV. Windisch, who served as Clear Channel’s Springfield general manager for six years, was courted by Koplar Communications President Ted Koplar to run his new Fox affiliate in Springfield, KRBK, effective  Aug. 17.

On Air
“I got into the radio industry 16 years ago on the advertising sales side and moved to Clear Channel in December 2000, and was a sales manager there. In 2005, I took on the general manager position. Clear Channel absolutely provided the tools and the resources and support to give me management experience … that prepared me for the switch to television. It definitely is a different industry, but it is the media industry.”

Technical Difficulties
“The biggest priority right now is getting our signal issues taken care of. … We have a team of engineers working around the clock on that. Eighty-two percent of the people in the designated market area have either cable or satellite, and they have no problems receiving our signal. Eighteen percent still receive just the over-the-air signal. As an independent station, our tower has been located in Osage Beach, and that signal did not cover a lot of this area. When Koplar Communications found out that it was going to be the Fox affiliate, it immediately started working on that because it didn’t want any home to not be able to receive our television station. It is probably one of the most aggressive engineering efforts that you could find to get this signal to cover Springfield and the surrounding area in about a two to three month period of time – something that would normally take about a year.”

Finding ‘Bones’
“With AT&T U-verse, we’re on Channel 5; Dish Network, we’re on Channel 5; DirecTV, we’re currently on 49, which is the same channel as the over-the-air signal; and Mediacom, we’re on Channel 10. There are a lot of smaller cable providers throughout southwest Missouri, and we’ve got the channels listed for each one of those also on our Web site, Anybody who used to watch Fox programming – whether it was “American Idol,” “House” or “Bones” – or any of those programs that they used to watch on KSFX, they’ll now watch those on KRBK.”

Local Outreach
“One of our main goals is to make sure that this station gets fully immersed into the community. At Clear Channel, one of the big challenges I had was making sure that others knew our radio stations really cared about the community. There was this perception that Clear Channel, as a giant corporate entity, didn’t care about the local community, which was not true at all. One of my goals there for 10 years was to make sure that we did things for the community as much as possible, and I’ve carried that over to this television station.”

Landing the Gig
“Ted Koplar, the owner of this station, approached me in early July. He said one of the best moves he’s made came about 15 years ago when he hired a radio station general manager to run one of his former St. Louis television stations. He came in with a different perspective and some different ideas, and that was what he said he saw in me.”
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