KTVA, virtual channel 11 (UHF digital channel 28), is a CBS-affiliated television station licensed to Anchorage, Alaska, United States. The station is owned by Denali Media Holdings, a subsidiary of local cable provider GCI. KTVA's studios are based at the former headquarters of the Anchorage Daily News on Northway Drive in Anchorage, and its transmitter is located in Spenard—covering the Anchorage bowl and much of the adjacent Matanuska-Susitna Valley.[1][2]

KTVA Logo.png
Anchorage, Alaska
United States
BrandingKTVA 11 (general)
KTVA 11 News (newscasts)
SloganThe Voice of Alaska
ChannelsDigital: 28 (UHF)
Virtual: 11 (PSIP)
Subchannels11.1 CBS
OwnerDenali Media Holdings
(Denali Media Anchorage, Corp.)
First air dateDecember 11, 1953 (65 years ago) (1953-12-11)
Call letters' meaningTeleVision Alaska
Sister station(s)KATH-LD
Former channel number(s)Analog:
11 (VHF, 1953–2009)
Former affiliationsAll secondary:
DuMont (1953–1955)
NTA (1956–1961)
NBC (1965–1970)
PBS (Sesame Street, 1970–1975)
Transmitter power28.9 kW
Height60.6 m (199 ft)
Facility ID49632
Transmitter coordinates61°11′31″N 149°54′9″W / 61.19194°N 149.90250°W / 61.19194; -149.90250
Licensing authorityFCC
Public license informationProfile

On cable, the station is available on GCI channel 11 and in high definition on digital channel 656.[3] It is also carried on DirecTV and Dish Network in the Anchorage television market. Some of KTVA's programming is broadcast to rural communities via low-power translators through the Alaska Rural Communications Service (ARCS).


Legendary Alaskan broadcast pioneer August G. "Augie" Hiebert (1916–2007) applied for the license in May 1953 through his company, Northern Television. He received FCC approval for construction permits in July 1953, and KTVA signed on the air on December 11, 1953 broadcasting (initially from 2 p.m. to 11:30 p.m.). The studio and office were originally housed on the first floor and the transmitter on top of the pink 14-story McKinley Tower,[4] with an analog signal on VHF channel 11.[5] The station aired a few NBC programs in the late 1960s, until KHAR-TV (channel 13, now ABC affiliate KYUR) took the NBC affiliation in 1970. The station was a DuMont affiliate in the early 1950s.[6] During the late 1950s, the station was also briefly affiliated with the NTA Film Network.[7] KTVA also carried Sesame Street from 1970 until KAKM signed on in 1975.

On January 3, 1971, KTVA aired Anchorage's first ever live satellite broadcast from the U.S. mainland, the 1970 NFC Championship Game.[8] Until the 1980s, when the networks went to full satellite distribution, KTVA and other TV stations in Alaska aired network programming on a tape-delayed basis via videotaped recordings of network programs captured off the air in Seattle, which were then flown to Alaska.

Hiebert retired in 1997, earning a handsome return on his investment of 44 years earlier. In 2000, KTVA was acquired by the newspaper publisher MediaNews Group.[9] KTVA brought in $6.8 million of revenue in 2009, second to NBC affiliate KTUU-TV (channel 2) with $10 million (40% of the market).[10]

On November 9, 2012, GCI, through subsidiary Denali Media Holdings, announced plans to purchase KTVA, as well as KATH-LD and KSCT-LP in Southeast Alaska.[11] The Federal Communications Commission approved the deal on October 29, 2013.[12] The sale was formally closed on November 1.[13]

On December 2, 2013, KTVA moved to a new high definition-capable studio on the second floor of the headquarters of the Anchorage Daily News, and unveiled a new set and logo.[14] KTVA became the first television station in Alaska to broadcast local news in high definition.[15] KTVA is presently the only Anchorage television station that has never changed its primary affiliation, as well as one of two Big Four affiliates in the market to have been their respective networks' sole affiliate (the other being Fox affiliate KTBY, channel 4). KTVA is currently the only television station owned and operated by an Alaskan company, GCI.

In 2017, KTVA was received a prestigious James Beard Award for its Harvesting Alaska series, beating out CBS This Morning and WLS-TV in Chicago.[16] KTVA has also received many accolades, including an Emmy, RTNDA awards, NPPA awards, Alaska Press Club awards and Alaska 'Goldie' Awards.

Channel 11's studios were severely damaged following major earthquakes that hit Anchorage on the morning of November 30, 2018, which also knocked the station off the air. Part of the structure, equipment and water were strewn about the facility, which one reporter for the station called "absolutely destroyed."[17]

Digital televisionEdit

Digital channelEdit

Channel Video Aspect PSIP Short Name Programming[18]
11.1 1080i 16:9 KTVA-HD Main KTVA programming / CBS

Analog-to-digital conversionEdit

KTVA shut down its analog signal, over VHF channel 11, on June 12, 2009, the official date in which full-power television stations in the United States transitioned from analog to digital broadcasts under federal mandate. The station's digital signal remained on its pre-transition UHF channel 28.[19] Through the use of PSIP, digital television receivers display the station's virtual channel as its former VHF analog channel 11.

News operationEdit

KTVA presently broadcasts 22 hours of locally produced newscasts each week (with 4 hours on weekdays and 1 hour each on Saturdays and Sundays). Weekday news offerings include a one-hour morning newscast called Daybreak at 6 a.m. with an additional hour at 9 a.m. (which premiered on September 12, 2016), two half-hour evening newscasts at 5 p.m. and 10 p.m. and a one-hour newscast at 6 p.m. The station dropped its morning and weekend newscasts on April 18, 2012,[20] but they were reinstated in December 2013.

On September 21, 2014, during the outro of a story regarding the state's November ballot issue which would allow recreational use of marijuana, reporter Charlene Ebge, who used the on-air pseudonym Charlo Greene, revealed that she was the president of the medical cannabis organization Alaska Cannabis Club, which is campaigning for the legalization of the drug. She ended the outro with a profane statement, resigned on-air and walked off the set. Ebge later admitted that she did this in order to "draw attention" to the issue of legalization of marijuana.[21] Following the incident, Bert Rudman, the station's news director, issued a formal apology.[22] As the incident occurred after 10 p.m. local time past the FCC's safe harbor provisions, a fine will not be assessed.[23] The ballot issue won voter support and was passed in the November 4 election.[24]


  1. ^ "FCC Digital TV Coverage Maps - Anchorage" (PDF). FCC.gov - Retrieved January 26, 2012.
  2. ^ "KTVA – Online Coverage Map". TVFool.com - Retrieved January 26, 2012.
  3. ^ https://www.gci.com/-/media/files/gci/channel-lineups/consumer-2018/anchorage-line-up-cards-statewide-cons-jan2018.pdf
  4. ^ Television: A World Survey. 1953. UNESCO. Retrieved January 28, 2012.
  5. ^ Historic Anchorage: An Illustrated History. By John Strohmeyer. Anchorage Museum Association. 2001. Retrieved January 28, 2012./
  6. ^ http://www.jeaniegreene.com/akb.htm
  7. ^ "Require Prime Evening Time for NTA Films". Boxoffice: 13. November 10, 1956. Archived from the original on June 14, 2009.
  8. ^ Anchorage: From Its Humble Origins as a Railroad Construction Camp. ISBN 978-0945397724.
  9. ^ http://peninsulaclarion.com/stories/032900/ala_032900ala0040001.shtml Retrieved November 14, 2013
  10. ^ "Market Eye: They're Anchored to Alaska". Broadcasting & Cable. Retrieved January 28, 2012.
  11. ^ "GCI to purchase NBC for Southeast Alaska KATH-TV and KSCT-TV". Retrieved Nov 9, 2012.
  12. ^ Burke, Jill (October 30, 2013). "GCI wins out in FCC fight over acquisition of Alaska TV stations". Alaska Dispatch. Retrieved October 31, 2013.
  13. ^ https://licensing.fcc.gov/cgi-bin/ws.exe/prod/cdbs/forms/prod/cdbsmenu.hts?context=25&appn=101587216&formid=905&fac_num=49632
  14. ^ "KTVA debuts new station". KTVA.com. Retrieved 4 December 2013.
  15. ^ "Reinventing a television station in the middle of Alaska". Retrieved 2018-01-11.
  16. ^ "'Harvesting Alaska' wins prestigious James Beard Award". www.ktva.com. Retrieved 2018-01-11.
  17. ^ "Alaska earthquake leaves Anchorage TV station KTVA heavily damaged". 6abc.com. WPVI-TV. November 30, 2018.
  18. ^ RabbitEars TV Query for KTVA
  19. ^ "DTV Tentative Channel Designations for the First and the Second Rounds" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-08-29. Retrieved 2012-03-24.
  20. ^ http://www.ktva.com/home/top-stories/KTVA-Announces-Programming-Changes-End-to-Morning-Weekend-Newscasts-147991495.html
  21. ^ Andrews, Laurel (21 September 2014). "KTVA reporter quits on-air after saying she owns Alaska Cannabis Club". Anchorage Daily News. Alaska Dispatch. Retrieved 23 September 2014.
  22. ^ Feldman, Josh (Sep 23, 2014). "KTVA Issues Formal Apology for Its 'F*ck It, I Quit' Reporter". Mediaite.
  23. ^ Herbert, Geoff (Sep 22, 2014). "TV reporter drops F-bomb live on air, quits to focus on her marijuana club".
  24. ^ Suzanna Caldwell, Laurel Andrews (4 November 2014). "Alaskans vote to legalize marijuana". Anchorage Daily News. Retrieved 10 November 2014.

External linksEdit