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(semi-satellite of KIMA-TV, Yakima, Washington)
KEPR logo

KIMA-KEPR-DT2 Logo.png
Pasco/Richland/Kennewick, Washington
Branding KEPR (general)
KEPR Action News (newscasts)
(pronounced "keeper")
CW 9 Yakima/Tri-Cities (on DT2)
Slogan Taking Action for You
Channels Digital: 18 (UHF)
Virtual: 19 (PSIP)
Subchannels 29.1 CBS
29.2 The CW
Affiliations CBS
The CW (on DT2)
Owner Sinclair Broadcast Group
(Sinclair Yakima Licensee, LLC)
First air date December 28, 1954
Call letters' meaning KEnnewick, Pasco, Richland
Sister station(s) KIMA-TV, KLEW-TV,
Former channel number(s) Analog:
19 (UHF, 1954-2009)
Former affiliations NBC (secondary, 1954-1965)
ABC (1954-1970)
Transmitter power 32.43 kW
Height 355.5 m
Facility ID 56029
Transmitter coordinates 46°5′50.5″N 119°11′33.4″W / 46.097361°N 119.192611°W / 46.097361; -119.192611

KEPR-TV (pronounced "keeper"), virtual channel 19, is the CBS affiliated television station for the Tri-Cities area of Richland, Pasco, and Kennewick, Washington. It is licensed to Pasco. It is sister station to KIMA-TV in Yakima, Washington and KLEW-TV in Lewiston, Idaho. KEPR's transmitter is located on Johnson Butte near Kennewick.

Though identifying as a station in its own right, KEPR is considered a semi-satellite of KIMA. It clears all of KIMA's syndicated programming, but airs separate IDs and commercials. On satellite, both Dish Network and DirecTV carry KEPR-TV along with KIMA-TV.

All of KEPR's programming is run out of Fisher Plaza in Seattle. KEPR is also a sister station to Univision affiliates KVVK-CA and KORX-CA.

KEPR's morning and weekend newscasts are shared with KIMA-TV. Branded as "KIMA/KEPR Action News", they cover both the Columbia Basin and the Yakima Valley. KEPR continues to air its own 5, 6 & 11 p.m. newscasts.


KEPR-TV went on the air for the first time December 28, 1954 as a satellite of KIMA-TV. It was owned by Cascade Broadcasting Company along with KEPR radio (AM 610, now KONA).

A few years earlier, the Federal Communications Commission collapsed all of central Washington into one giant television market. However, this market was designated a "UHF island" due to being sandwiched between Seattle to the west, Spokane to the east and Portland to the south. It soon became apparent that one full-power UHF station would not be nearly enough to adequately cover this vast and mountainous area. KEPR-TV thus signed on as the first station in the United States to be a satellite of another.

Original plans called for it to be a straight repeater of KIMA-TV, apart from station identifications. However, it soon became apparent that Tri-Cities residents wanted a more local station. Monte Strohl, who until then had been a radio salesman at KIMA, was installed as the first manager-salesman of KEPR-TV. The station also added a separate news department.

Like its parent station, KEPR-TV carried programming from all three networks, but was a primary CBS affiliate. It lost NBC in 1965 when KNDU followed the lead of parent station KNDO and became a full-time NBC affiliate, and lost ABC when KVEW signed on along with parent KAPP in 1970. During the 1970s, the two stations co-branded as "Cascade TV."

KEPR produces Community Health Journal with Jim Hall, a former anchorman for the station who is now with Kadlec Medical Center in Richland. The program has aired for 15 years, making it one of the longest-running magazine programs in the market.

By 1988, the station was purchased by Retlaw Broadcasting.[1] Fisher Communications purchased KLEW-TV along with the other Retlaw owned stations in 1999.[2]

KEPR logo prior to 2007

In 2000, KEPR became the first station in the Tri-Cities to broadcast a digital signal with the activation of a low-power, standard definition signal on channel 18; this was upgraded to a full-power, high definition signal in 2007. The digital signal remained on channel 18 following the end of analog broadcasting in 2009; however, through the use of PSIP, digital television receivers display KEPR's virtual channel as 19.

On March 30, 2009, KEPR launched a digital subchannel affiliated with The CW, filling the void left by KCWK (channel 9) going dark at the end of May 2008 due to the Pappas Telecasting bankruptcy.[3] The subchannel subsequently took KCWK's former channel 9 position on local cable systems. As had been the case with KCWK, programming is primarily sourced from the network's CW Plus feed, though there is a 10 p.m. newscast on weeknights.

On April 11, 2013, Fisher announced that it would sell its properties, including KEPR-TV, to the Sinclair Broadcast Group.[4] The deal was completed on August 8, 2013.[5]

On-Air Staff[edit]


  • Terry Chick - KEPR Action News @ 5, 6 & 11 PM
  • Annie Andrews - KEPR Action News @ 5, 6 & 11 PM
  • Kristi Paulus - KEPR Action News Morning Show 5-7 AM
  • Frances Watson - KEPR Action News Weekends @ 6:30 & 11 PM


  • Abby Acone
  • Melissa Jespersen - Morning/Feature Reporter
  • Gina Lazara
  • Davis Wahlman
  • Frances Watson
  • Tyler Slauson - Multimedia Journalist

Weather Team

  • Mike McCabe - Chief Weather Anchor
  • Jay Frank - Morning Weather Anchor
  • Abby Acone - Weekend Weather Anchor

Sports Team

  • Morgan Vance - KEPR Action News @ 6 & 11 PM
  • Vince Sapienza - KEPR Action News Weekends @ 6:30 & 11 PM


External links[edit]