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KOTA logo.png
Broadcast area Rapid City, South Dakota
Branding News Radio KOTA
Slogan "The Black Hills' News/Talk Station"
Format News/Talk
Power 5,000 watts (unlimited) AM
250 watts FM
Class B
Facility ID 17678
Callsign meaning DAKOTA
Former callsigns KOBH (1936-1945)
Affiliations CBS Radio Network
Owner Duhamel Broadcasting Enterprises
Sister stations KQRQ, KZZI, KDDX, KZLK
Website Website

KOTA (1380 AM, "Radio 1380 KOTA") is a radio station licensed to serve Rapid City, South Dakota. The station is owned by the Duhamel family of Rapid City. It airs a News/Talk radio format.[1]

The station was assigned these call letters by the Federal Communications Commission.[2]

Weekday programming includes local morning and drive time news programs as well as syndicated programming from Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Thom Hartmann and Coast To Coast AM with George Noory.

Weekend programming includes syndicated programming from Kim Komando, Roger Hedgecock and a variety of lifestyle programming. During the NFL football season, select Sunday games are aired from Westwood One Radio Networks and every Monday and Thursday night game. The station also airs all Denver Broncos game through the Denver Broncos Radio Network. All playoff and Super Bowl games are carried as well.


The station first hit the airwaves on November 26, 1936 as KOBH (Kall Of the Black Hills), a Thanksgiving Day present to western South Dakota. It was owned by Black Hills Broadcasting, and operated from studios in the Hotel Alex Johnson in downtown Rapid City.

Originally broadcasting with a very limited licensed power of 150 watts, in 1944 KOBH sought approval from the Federal Communications Commission to move up to 5000 watts, which would dramatically improve its ability to reach this mountainous area. Asked to help, Congressman Francis H. Case sought military support. He discovered that U.S. Army Air Corps airplanes based at the recently established Rapid City Army Air Base (later renamed Ellsworth Air Force Base) used KOBH as a navigation beacon while training for European strategic bombing during World War II. With Pentagon backing, Case convinced the FCC to grant the power increase. On New Year's Day 1945, the station signed on from its new, more powerful tower under new call letters, KOTA.[3] In the same year, it secured an affiliation with CBS Radio that continues to this day.

In 1954, Rapid City businesswoman Helen Duhamel, a minority owner since 1943, bought full control of the station, changing its corporate name to Duhamel Broadcasting Enterprises. The Duhamels still own the station today. Since the 1990s, it has been a news and talk station.

In May 2017, the station signed on a new FM signal in Rapid City. The FM translator has an assigned frequency of 100.7 FM and an effective radiated power of 250-watts. The licensed translator uses the FCC assigned call sign K264CP. This was done as part of the FCC’s AM Revitalization program.[4]

Notable alumni of the station include B-movie producer Arch Hall Sr.


  1. ^ "Winter 2008 Station Information Profile". Arbitron. 
  2. ^ "Call Sign History". FCC Media Bureau CDBS Public Access Database. 
  3. ^ Switzer, Mary Kay (2004). Sterling, Christopher H., ed. The Museum of Broadcast Communications Encyclopedia of Radio Vol 1: Entries A-E. New York: Fitzroy Dearborn. p. 813. ISBN 978-1-57958-431-3. 
  4. ^ "KOTA Signs on New FM Signal". DakotaWire. 2017-05-04. Retrieved 2017-06-27. 

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