|Branding||News 4 Tucson|
|Slogan||Balanced News You Can Count On|
|Channels||Digital: 23 (UHF)
Virtual: 4 (PSIP)
DirecTV (Southern Arizona only): 4
Cox (Tucson): 4
|Translators||K04QP-D Casas Adobes
K20FO Sierra Vista
(KVOA Communications, Inc.)
|First air date||September 15, 1953|
|Call letters' meaning||Voice
|Former callsigns||KVOA-TV (1953-1996)|
|Former channel number(s)||Analog:
4 (VHF, 1953-2009)
|Transmitter power||405 kW|
KVOA is a full-service NBC-affiliated television station serving Tucson, Arizona. It broadcasts in digital on UHF channel 23 from its transmitter on Mount Bigelow, northeast of Tucson, and its studio operations are located north of downtown. Per FCC regulations, the station identifies itself on television tuners as channel 4 through PSIP. KVOA has a low-power digital translator in Casas Adobes and analog translators in Duncan/Safford and Sierra Vista. The primary station and the Casas Adobes and Sierra Vista translators are owned by Cordillera Communications, a subsidiary of the Evening Post Industries of Charleston, South Carolina. Syndicated programming on KVOA includes: The Ricki Lake Show, Rachael Ray, and Dr. Phil.
|4.1||1080i||16:9||Main KVOA-TV programming / NBC|
On June 15, 2000, KVOA was issued a construction permit to build digital station KVOA-DT on UHF channel 23. There were delays in building the new station, and on June 18, 2003, KVOA was granted Special Temporary Authority (STA) to operate the digital station at reduced power. The STA has been extended several times, and as of September 2006, KVOA-DT continues to operate under STA at reduced power.
In October 2006, KVOA requested companion digital LPTV channels for its Sierra Vista translator, K20FO, and Casas Adobes translator, K64BV. The FCC granted a construction permits for the Sierra Vista companion channel, K10QA-D, and the Casa Adobes companion channel, K04QP-D, on December 26, 2007.
On June 12, 2009, at the end of the digital transition, KVOA ended analog broadcasts on channel 4, continuing digital operations on RF channel 23. The same day, KVOA ended analog broadcasts on its channel 64 Casas Adobes translator, began digital operations on K04QP-D, and applied for a license to cover, which was granted June 16.
In September 1953, KVOA signed on as Tucson's second television station and NBC affiliate, eight months after KOLD-TV signed on as the CBS affiliate. Although KVOA was an NBC affiliate, it carried a secondary affiliation with ABC until 1956 when KDWI-TV (now KGUN) began operations. During the late 1950s, the station was also briefly affiliated with the NTA Film Network.
It was originally owned by Chicago advertising executive John Louis, Sr., along with KVOA-AM 1290 (now KCUB). It was a sister station to KTAR in Phoenix. In October 1953, KVOA brought Tucson its first-ever live television event: a World Series broadcast. The Louis broadcasting empire eventually became known as Pacific & Southern Broadcasting, headquartered in Phoenix; however, Louis did not keep KVOA for long. In 1955, Louis sold the KVOA stations to Clinton D. McKinnon, who would later acquire KOAT-TV in Albuquerque, New Mexico and combine the two television stations to form Alvarado Television. In 1962, the Alvarado stations were sold to Steinman Stations, the owner of WGAL-TV in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.
In 1968, the Steinmans sold a controlling stake in KVOA-TV to Pulitzer Publishing, making it Pulitzer's first (partial) television station acquisition outside of its home base in St. Louis, Missouri; KOAT went to Pulitzer fully a year later. In 1972, Pulitzer was forced to spin off its share of KVOA to an employee group called Channel 4-TV after it purchased the Arizona Daily Star the year before due to the tightening of the Federal Communications Commission's cross-ownership rules. Channel 4-TV also acquired Steinman's stake in KVOA around the same time.
The station was acquired by the Hobby family of Houston, publishers of the Houston Post, in 1982. When the Post was sold a year later, the Hobby family reorganized its broadcasting interests as H&C Communications. H&C sold off its television stations in 1993, with KVOA going to the Evening Post Publishing Company.
During the 2009 Super Bowl, Comcast's transmission of the station was interrupted for approximately 20 seconds replacing KVOA's broadcast of the game with soft-core porn, affecting Comcast's analog subscribers in portions of the Tucson area. The substitution appears to have been made at Comcast, not at KVOA, leaving KVOA's over-the-air, satellite and other cable providers viewers unaffected. Also, Comcast's high-definition transmission of KVOA was not affected.
In May 2011, KVOA announced that it would delay the showing of an upcoming episode of Law & Order: LA based on the mass shootings which occurred in Tucson earlier that year with a late-night airing, due to concerns that its content would be too sensitive.
KVOA formerly operated Southern Arizona News Network, a 24-hour cable news television network that was exclusive to local Cox Cable subscribers, that premiered on June 7, 2007 and ended broadcasting on March 31, 2010.
For decades, KVOA had used the Eyewitness News moniker, and the slogan "Where The News Comes First". In the early 1990s, these newscasts used the News Series 2000 theme music usually associated with local newscasts on ABC stations, not those of KVOA's affiliated network of NBC. KVOA also was the market's news leader: by 1995, Channel 4 had led the Tucson news ratings for 21 straight years, half of its history – but only after Jon F. Ruby became the station's general manager in 1974 and initiated a major expansion of news. In 1995, KVOA's $750,000 satellite truck was the market's only microwave-based live news vehicle; Eyewitness News equaled or beat KGUN and KOLD combined in all time slots; was first with stereo, closed captioning, and microwave electronic news gathering; and had the largest television news staff in the market (second in size only to the Arizona Daily Star). However in February 2006 the name shortened to News 4, with the new slogan "Coverage You Can Count On". In November 2007, KVOA changed its slogan to "Balanced News You Can Count On".
On April 22, 2007, KVOA became the first station in Tucson to broadcast its local newscasts in high definition, starting with the 10 p.m. newscast; among the changes included a new set andupdated graphics. KVOA is the first station in Tucson to offer news in high definition and the second in Arizona (following KPNX in Phoenix). Sister station WLEX in Lexington, Kentucky is also currently broadcasting its local newscasts in HD.
Notable current on-air staff
- Sean Mooney - weekends at 5:30 and 10:00 p.m.
Notable former on-air staff
- Savannah Guthrie (currently co-anchor of The Today Show)
- Mary Kim Titla (ran for Congress in 2008, publishes Native Youth Magazine)
- Lou Waters
- K04QP-D channel 4 Casas Adobes (serving the northwest part of the Tucson metropolitan area shielded by Mount Lemmon)
- K20FO Channel 20 Sierra Vista
- The Broadcasting and Cable Yearbook says September 15, while the Television and Cable Factbook says September 27.
- Cozi TV: KVOA
- "Require Prime Evening Time for NTA Films", Boxoffice, November 10, 1956: 13
- Super Bowl Cut Off By Porn Scene, Retrieved February 3, 2009
- Comcast offers $10 credit to Tucson customers who saw Super Bowl porn Retrieved February 4, 2009
- Smith, Dylan. "KVOA to delay 'Law & Order' episode based on Giffords shooting". Tucson Sentinel. Retrieved 12 May 2011.
- Ochs, Mark. "Channel 4 celebrates 2 decades atop news ratings." Inside Tucson Business 25 Sep. 1995: 13.
- KVOA official website
- Query the FCC's TV station database for KVOA
- Query TV Fool's coverage map for KVOA
- BIAfn's Media Web Database -- Information on KVOA-TV