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KGW NC8 treated.png
Portland, Oregon
United States
Branding KGW NewsChannel 8
Slogan Where the News Comes First
Channels Digital: 8 (VHF)
Virtual: 8 (PSIP)
Subchannels 8.1 NBC HD
8.2 Live Well Network
8.3 Estrella TV
Translators see list below
Affiliations NBC
Owner Sander Media, LLC
(operated through SSA by Gannett Company)
(Sander Operating Co. III, LLC D/B/A KGW Television)
First air date December 15, 1956
Call letters' meaning Keep
Former callsigns KGW-TV (1956–1994)
Former channel number(s) Analog:
8 (VHF, 1956–2009)
46 (UHF, 2000–2009)
Former affiliations Primary:
ABC (1956–1959)
NBC Weather Plus (2004–2008)
KGW Weather Channel (2008–2009)
Local news and weather (2010–2012)
Transmitter power 45 kW
Height 524 m
Facility ID 34874
Transmitter coordinates 45°31′20.5″N 122°44′50.1″W / 45.522361°N 122.747250°W / 45.522361; -122.747250

KGW, VHF digital channel 8, is the NBC-affiliated television station located in Portland, Oregon, United States. Owned by Sander Media, LLC, KGW is operated by Gannett Company through a shared services agreement, and is co-owned with the Statesman Journal newspaper. KGW maintains studios on Jefferson Street in southwestern Portland, and its transmitter is located in the city's Sylvan-Highlands section. KGW also serves as the Portland bureau for co-owned regional news channel Northwest Cable News and produces news segments for the channel.


The station was an extension of radio station KGW (620 AM, now KPOJ). The Oregonian newspaper created KGW-AM by purchasing an existing transmitter from the Shipowners Radio Service. The U.S. Department of Commerce licensed the station, and it began broadcasting on March 21, 1922.[citation needed] The Oregonian applied for and received a Federal Communications Commission (FCC) construction permit for a television station in 1947, but later returned it in order to focus on its core newspaper business. It later bought KOIN-AM and used it to start KOIN-TV (channel 6).[citation needed]

North Pacific Television, Inc. acquired KGW and KGW-FM on November 1, 1953. The group was owned by a group of five Portland businessmen and Seattle businesswoman Dorothy Bullitt. Bullitt's King Broadcasting Company, who also owned KING-AM-FM-TV in Seattle, owned a 40 percent stake in the venture. Bullitt eventually gained full control of the stations, and KGW-TV signed on the air on December 15, 1956 on channel 8 as an ABC affiliate. On April 26, 1959, it swapped affiliations with KPTV (channel 12), becoming an NBC affiliate (KGW's sister station, KING-TV in Seattle, also switched from ABC to NBC at the same time).

KGW's logo used from September 1999-January 21, 2008. The channel 8 logo remains in place.

The KGW-TV tower was a prominent victim of the Northwest's historic, violent Columbus Day Storm on October 12, 1962.[citation needed] The station returned to the air on October 16 using a temporary tower, as well as an antenna on loan from KTNT-TV (now KSTW) of Tacoma, Washington. A new antenna and tower were placed into service on January 28, 1963. In 1964, KGW became the first television station in Portland to broadcast in color.[citation needed]

In 1992, King Broadcasting (which also included KING-TV in Seattle, KREM-TV in Spokane, Washington, KTVB-TV in Boise, Idaho and KHNL-TV in Honolulu, Hawaii) merged with The Providence Journal Company. Only five years later, in 1997, KGW became part of the Belo Corporation when it bought The Providence Journal Company.

KGW aired a Portland Trail Blazers game in high-definition on October 24, 2007. On October 12, 2011, KGW announced that unless a new contract agreement could be reached that it would drop the station from DirecTV's channel lineup.[2] This contract dispute that involved DirecTV and Belo would also remove sister station KING-TV from DirecTV in the Seattle market.[3] On November 1, 2011, DirecTV reached an agreement with Belo[2] to continue carrying KGW and KING on DirecTV.[3]

On June 13, 2013, the Gannett Company announced that it would acquire Belo. However, since Gannett owns the Statesman Journal newspaper in Salem – within KGW's viewing area – KGW will instead be sold to Sander Media, LLC (owned by former Belo executive, Jack Sander), with Gannett operating KGW through joint sales and shared services agreements in order to comply with the FCC's cross-ownership restrictions.[4][5] The sale was completed on December 23.[6]

Digital television[edit]

Digital channels[edit]

The station's digital channel is multiplexed:

Channel Video Aspect PSIP Short Name Programming[7]
8.1 1080i 16:9 KGW-HD Main KGW-TV programming / NBC
8.2 480i KGWLWN Live Well Network
8.3 4:3 KGWEST Estrella TV

KGW provided a 24-hour weather forecast service on digital subchannel 8.2 through the digital television transition, until the September 14, 2009 launch of Estrella TV.[citation needed] On August 2, 2010, KGW restored the 24-hour news and weather channel on 8.2 and moved Estrella TV programming to digital subchannel 8.3.

Analog-to-digital conversion[edit]

On July 18, 2008 at 6:14 p.m., KGW conducted a test for viewers to determine whether their television sets were ready for the digital transition by turning off its analog signal for 10 seconds, which the station conducted other times through the spring of 2009. In early 2009, KGW, along with other stations that had already added digital television technology, began broadcasting on its digital channel and those without cable or satellite service could purchase "DTA" (Digital to Analog) converter boxes. The U.S. government distributed credit-card "coupons" to get as much as a $50 discount on the boxes, with a limit of two coupons per household. The boxes would accept the digital signal and convert it back to analog so that older televisions could pick up the signal. It is estimated that 20% of television watching households in the Portland area use the over-the-air signal for TV services, making the coupon program very popular in Portland.[citation needed]

KGW shut down its analog signal, over VHF channel 8, at 3:04 a.m. 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 was relocated from its pre-transition UHF channel 46 to its former VHF analog channel 8 for post-transition operations.[8][9] Through the use of PSIP, digital television receivers display the station's virtual channel as its, which was among the high band UHF channels (52-69) that were removed from broadcasting use as a result of the transition. At 3:43 a.m., KGW completed its digital conversion when it shut down its temporary digital transmitter (on UHF channel 46) and switched digital operations to channel 8. At that point, only DTA boxes plugged into older television sets could allow analog televisions to pick up the signal.[citation needed]


Syndicated programming on this station includes The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Private Practice, Inside Edition and Katie. Along with NBC network programming, the station also airs some local programs, including select Portland Trail Blazers game telecasts, even as NBC itself no longer televises NBA games. The station preempts the Saturday edition of Today in favor of its extended weekend morning newscasts.

News operation[edit]

KGW presently broadcasts 38 hours of locally produced newscasts each week (with six hours on weekdays, and four hours each on Saturdays and Sundays). In addition, the station produces a nightly half-hour primetime newscast at 10 p.m. for CW affiliate KRCW as the Tribune Broadcasting-owned station does not operate a news department of its own.[citation needed]

KGW-TV's original evening news team remained intact for more than seven years – a rarity in the broadcast industry. Anchors Richard Ross and Ivan Smith, commentator Tom McCall, sportscaster Doug LaMear and meteorologist Jack Capell were the faces of KGW's "News Beat" from sign-on in December 1956 until early 1964, when McCall left the air to run for Oregon Secretary of State. McCall won election that fall, and was elected Governor of Oregon two years later. Ross anchored KGW's nightly news "Northwest Tonight" until 1975, and LaMear and Capell remained on Channel 8 for at least another two decades after Ross' departure for rival KATU (channel 2).[citation needed]

On January 21, 2008, KGW became the first television station in the Portland market to begin broadcasting its local newscasts in high definition.[citation needed] Along with a newly renovated studio, the station was rebranded from "Northwest NewsChannel 8" to "KGW NewsChannel 8", updated its logo/graphics, and debuted Version 3 of 615 Music's "The Tower" music package. In November 2008, KGW retrofitted its news helicopter with a HD camera.[10]

In 2008–2009, the station developed a high-definition news studio in downtown Portland at Pioneer Courthouse Square, in a space previously occupied by Powell's Books. Regular broadcasts from the location that KGW named the "Studio on the Square" began on March 17, 2009,[11] with the 4:30 a.m. newscast. KGW's weekday morning, noon, 4 and 7 p.m. newscasts originate from the downtown location.[12]

News/station presentation[edit]

Newscast titles[edit]

  • News Beat (1956–1965)
  • KGW-TV News (1965–1973)
  • Channel 8 News (general)/Northwest at Noon (noon newscast) /Northwest Tonight (11 p.m. newscast; 1973–1979)
  • Newscenter 8, News 8 (1979-1994)[13]
  • KGW Northwest NewsChannel 8 (1994-January 21, 2008)
  • KGW NewsChannel 8 (January 21, 2008–present)[14]

Station slogans[edit]

  • "Channel 8, Take A Look" (1979)
  • "Channel 8, Proud As A Peacock!" (1979–1981; localized version of NBC slogan)
  • "Channel 8, Our Pride Is Showing" (1981–1982; localized version of NBC slogan)
  • "We`re Channel 8, Just Watch Us Now" (1982–1983; localized version of NBC slogan)
  • "Channel 8 There, Be There" (1983–1984; localized version of NBC slogan)
  • "Channel 8, Let's All Be There!" (1984–1986; localized version of NBC slogan)
  • "Come Home to Channel 8" (1986–1987; localized version of NBC slogan)
  • "Come on Home to Channel 8" (1987–1988; localized version of NBC slogan)
  • "Come Home To The Best, Only on Channel 8" (1988–1990; localized version of NBC slogan)
  • "Channel 8, The Place To Be!" (1990–1992; localized version of NBC slogan)
  • "Draw On Us, News 8" (early 1990s)
  • "It's A Whole New Channel 8" (1992–1993; localized version of NBC slogan)
  • "The Stars Are Back on Channel 8" (1993–1994; localized version of NBC slogan)
  • "Coverage You Can Count On: News 8" (c. 1993-1994)[15]
  • "Where the News Comes First" (1994–present)

On-air staff[edit]

Current on-air staff[16][edit]

  • Reggie Aqui - weekdays at 4:00 p.m.; also general assignment reporter
  • Tracy Barry - weeknights at 5:00, 6:00 and 6:30 p.m.
  • Brenda Braxton - weekday mornings (4:30-7:00 a.m.) and weekdays at noon
  • Joe Donlon - weeknights at 5:00, 6:00, 10:00 (KRCW) and 11:00 p.m.
  • Wayne Havrelly - weekend mornings (6:00-9:00 a.m.); also general assignment reporter
  • Russ Lewis - weekday mornings (4:30-7:00 a.m.) and weekdays at noon
  • Laural Porter - weeknights at 6:30, 10:00 (KRCW) and 11:00 p.m.; also host of Straight Talk
  • Stephanie Stricklen - weekdays at 4:00 and weeknights at 7:00 p.m.; also health reporter
  • Chris Willis - weekends at 5:00, 10:00 (KRCW) and 11:00 p.m.; also investigative reporter
First Alert Storm Team
  • Matt Zaffino (AMS Certified Broadcast Meteorologist Seal of Approval) - chief meteorologist; weekdays at 4:00 and weeknights at 5:00, 6:00, 6:30, 7:00, 10:00 (KRCW) and 11:00 p.m.
  • Nick Allard (AMS Seal of Approval) - meteorologist; weekday mornings (4:30-7:00 a.m.) and weekdays at noon
  • Jim Donovan - meteorologist; weekend mornings (6:00-9:00 a.m.)
  • Rod Hill (AMS Seal of Approval) - meteorologist; weekends at 5:00, 10:00 (KRCW) and 11:00 p.m.
  • Keely Chalmers - fill-in meteorologist; also general assignment reporter
Sports team
  • Adam Bjarnson - sports anchor, weeknights at 6:30, 10:00 (KRCW) and 11:00 p.m.
  • Joe Becker - sports anchor; weekends at 5:00, 10:00 (KRCW) and 11:00 p.m.
  • Mike Benner - general assignment reporter
  • Drew Carney - weekday morning feature reporter ("Out and About"; 4:30-7:00 a.m.)
  • Katherine Cook - general assignment reporter
  • Pat Dooris - general assignment and political reporter
  • Art Edwards - general assignment reporter
  • Tim Gordon - general assignment reporter
  • Mark Hanrahan - general assignment reporter
  • Erica Heartquist - general assignment reporter
  • Kyle Iboshi - general assignment reporter
  • Ashley Korslien - general assignment reporter
  • Cathy Marshall - general assignment reporter
  • Nina Mehlhaf - weekday morning reporter (4:30-7:00 a.m.)
  • Joe Smith - consumer, business and 7:00 p.m. general assignment reporter
  • Collette Wieland - weekday morning reporter (4:30-7:00 a.m.)

Notable former on-air staff[edit]


KGW's signal is rebroadcast on the following translator stations:

All translator stations ending in "-D" broadcast in digital, and KGW's services appear on channel 8 (8.1, 8.2, etc.) through use of PSIP.


Specific references:

  1. ^ Nelson, Bob (June 2, 2009). "Call Letter Origins" 238. The Broadcast Archive. Retrieved June 21, 2009. 
  2. ^ a b "A Message from our President and General Manager DJ Wilson". Retrieved 2011-11-17. 
  3. ^ a b "A Message from our President and General Manager Ray Heacox". Retrieved 2011-11-17. 
  4. ^ "Gannett, owner of the Statesman Journal, purchases KGW parent Belo for $1.5 billion". The Oregonian. Associated Press. June 13, 2013. Retrieved June 13, 2013. 
  5. ^ Brown, Lisa (June 13, 2013). "Gannett to buy TV station owner Belo for $1.5 billion". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Retrieved June 13, 2013. 
  6. ^ Gannett Completes Its Acquisition of Belo, TVNewsCheck, Retrieved 23 December, 2013
  7. ^ RabbitEars TV Query for KGW
  8. ^ "DTV Tentative Channel Designations for the First and Second Rounds" (PDF). Retrieved 2012-03-24. 
  9. ^ "CDBS Print". FCC. Retrieved 2011-11-17. 
  10. ^ "Resolution Revolution: Local news to go HD on KGW". [dead link]
  11. ^ "Studio on the Square: Tuesday's live show thread". KGW. March 17, 2009. Archived from the original on March 20, 2009. Retrieved April 24, 2012. 
  12. ^ "KGW to build studio at Pioneer Courthouse Sq.". [dead link]
  13. ^ "1994 KGW 8 "News 8 At Eleven"". 1994. Retrieved 2011-11-17. 
  14. ^ "KGW Newschannel 8 Open". 2008. Retrieved 2011-11-17. 
  15. ^ "1994 KGW 8 News Promo: "Coverage You Can Count On". Retrieved 2011-11-17. 
  16. ^ Bios

General references:

External links[edit]