Volunteer News

IN MEMORIAM:  A Tribute to Paul Samuel Barru (1926-2015)

By Laura Sampson
Photos and Research made possible by Station's Archived Memories (SAM)

Rocky Mountain PBS mourns the recent passing of Paul Samuel Barru, retired General Manager/Venturer of Roxborough Village and a former Chairman of the Board for the Council for Public Television, Channel 6, Inc.,1991-1993.

Paul began his first term on the KRMA-TV Council in 1987 as a member and chairperson of the Development Committee. From 1990-91, he chaired the "New Building Committee" where he was instrumental in establishing the plans for a capital campaign leading to the relocation of Channel Six from its first home at 1261 Glenarm Place to its current home in the Golden Triangle at 1089 Bannock Street.

As Council Chair (1991-1993), Paul Barru stood side-by-side with General Manager, Don Johnson, during a period of several major milestones in the history of Rocky Mountain PBS. Paul participated in raising over $15 million in the 1991 Capital Campaign, the remodel and construction of the studios at 1089 Bannock and the early merger discussions with KTSC (Channel 8, Pueblo). Additionally, Paul actively participated in the annual Washington, DC "Capitol Hill Week" meeting alongside former CEOs, Don Johnson and James Morgese, with Colorado legislators to personally convey the ongoing importance of federal funding for public broadcasting.

Jane and Paul regularly volunteered together on the "Big Board" phone bank during the televised Channel Six Auction. They faithfully attended community events showing their unwavering support of KRMA and Rocky Mountain PBS. Paul was a regular attendee at volunteer events and made a point of personally thanking the volunteers for their dedication to the station.

Don Johnson, retired General Manager of Rocky Mountain PBS, remembers Paul Barru with fondness saying, "Paul was a strong supporter of the station.  He believed in the station's mission to provide quality programing to the community. He gave many hours to the board of directors and supported the station's President and General Manager in all matters. Paul, along with his wife Jane, could be seen regularly at station functions and knew most all of the volunteers by name."

Following his years on the Board, Paul and Jane remained strong supporters of Rocky Mountain PBS by continuing to attend station events and contributing generously to the Cornerstone Society. Paul's friendly handshake, heartfelt greeting and wonderful smile will be missed by all who were honored to know him.

Paul is survived by his wife, Jane Barru, four sons, a stepson and two stepdaughters along with five beautiful grandchildren whom Paul loved dearly.

A Tribute to Paul Samuel Barru (1926-2015)

Message from the Volunteer Board Executive Committee

Submitted by Betty Flaten, President

We send best wishes for a speedy recovery to Volunteer Board secretary, Sandy Gerulat who is at home recovering from a successful surgery. Those wishing to send Sandy a note or card can reach her at: 601 West 11th Avenue, # 609, Denver, CO 80204.

Many of our volunteers were busy with the Station's Archived Memories 59th Anniversary of Rocky Mountain PBS staff presentation on January 30th. (Laura Sampson has an article about the event elsewhere in the newsletter.) I want to give a special "Shout Out" to my display committee who presented photos, memorabilia, and productions from the six decades of Rocky Mountain PBS history. They are Laura Hoganson, Mary King, Judy Lester-Smith, Lis Lord, Judi Martine, Anne Osterloh, Donna Prince, Marge Romberger, and Lydia Winkler. These wonderful volunteers spent weeks organizing and preparing the materials for display and staffing the tables on January 30.

Congratulations to the Engineering Department of Rocky Mountain PBS and volunteer Judy Lester-Smith on receiving this year's "From the Heart" Awards. The awardees exemplify the quality and dedication of our staff and volunteers who work quietly behind the scenes making the station a better place for everyone to work and volunteer. Another "Shout Out" to Vice President, Jeanne Sanchez for organizing the event and conducting the presentation, and to her committee; Marti VanWagenen, Susan Barber and yours truly. Thanks to Mike Cawthra for taking the photos.

We are excited to have several new volunteers sign up at station events or via the newsletter. They are Kimberly Brock, Wendy King, and Susie Hall. We welcome them to the volunteer corps and when you see them at events congratulate them on becoming a part of our volunteer family.

The March Volunteer Board meeting will be held on Wednesday, March 11, 2015 at 6:00pm The meeting will focus on a report of the Restructure Task Force. There will be a vote on accepting the report and next steps to follow as a result of the vote. All voting members are urged to attend and we invite past board members and volunteers to come to hear the report.

It is also that time of year when we are looking for new leadership for the volunteer corp. If a member of the Nominating committee calls and asks for you to volunteer, take the time to listen to that person and consider a role on the leadership team. The position for which they call you may not be the "fit" but another position might be the one.

Ken Burns Cancer Documentary Screening Across the State

PBS documentarian Ken Burns trains his lens on one of the world's most dauntin g subjects: cancer. What he learns is that there is reason to be hopeful as researchers make great progress toward eventually eradicating this dreaded disease.
Join us for an exclusive free screening and panel discussion, and learn why all of us should feel a sense of promise when it comes to fighting cancer.
"Cancer: The Emperor of All Maladies" airs March 30-April 1 at 8 pm on Rocky Mountain PBS. Learn more about the film and RSVP to the screenings at rmpbs.org/cancerhope.

Front Range Screening

Wednesday, March 18, 2015, 5:30 pm - 8 pm

Rocky Mountain PBS, Studio 1
1089 Bannock St, Denver, CO 80204

Expert Panel Discussion featuring:

  • Tim Byers, MD, MPH, Associate Director for Cancer Prevention and Control, University of Colorado Cancer Center
  • Rodney Page, DVM, Director, CSU Flint Animal Cancer Center
  • Nicholas Foreman, MD, Director, Pediatric Neuro-oncology, Children's Hospital 
  • Laura Frank, President of News, Rocky Mountain PBS (moderator)

Southern Colorado Screening

Wednesday, March 18, 2015, 8 am - 10:30 am

Tim Gill Center, East Costilla Street

Colorado Springs, CO 80903
Expert Panel Discussion featuring:

  • Meghan Hooper, M.ED, CHES | Health Systems Manager, Hospital and Pediatric Cancer Survivor
  • Lisa Reaves, MD, Childrens Hospital, Colorado Springs

Western Colorado Screening

Thursday, March 19, 2015, 5:30 pm - 7 pm

Colorado Mesa University, University Center, South Ballroom, 

1100 North Avenue, Grand Junction, CO 81501

Mary Horton RN, BSN, OCN- Manager Acute Oncology
  • Jim Comerford, cancer survivor 
  • Marty R. Jacobson, PhD, Research Director at the Saccomanno Research Institute at St. Mary’s Hospital
  • Dr. JoAnne Virgilio DO., Hematologist Oncologist at Community Hospital

Learn more about the film and RSVP to the screenings at rmpbs.org/cancerhope.

Family Science Night Kicks off in Western Colorado

Rocky Mountain PBS and Encana are proud to team up with the John McConnell Math & Science Center of Western Colorado to present Family Science Night on the first Thursday of every month. RMPBS volunteers will have the opportunity to meet and greet Mesa County families, as well as engage in some fun, hands on experiments.

Colorado Experience Partners with National History Day 

Submitted by Mariel Rodriguez-McGill

This year Colorado Experience is partnering with National History Day in Colorado. The annual competition is a great way for middle school and high school students to delve deeper into a historical topic of their choice. One of the perks of our partnership is that we will be awarding a student with the Colorado Experience Award for the best historical documentary on a Colorado topic. Before students are able to compete at the state level, they must place in their local competitions.

On March 7th, the Denver-area competition will take place at Hamilton Middle School. National History Day is currently looking for volunteers to serve as judges on this day. Last year I had the opportunity to judge middle school historical documentaries and I would highly recommend taking advantage of this experience. The projects were well researched, the students were enthusiastic about history and I had fun! There are other categories besides documentary to judge including historical papers, performances, exhibits and websites.

If you are interested in judging the local competition, please contact Minda McGurk-- you can reach her via email at MALINDA_MCGURK@dpsk12.org or give her a call at 720-423-2065.

For more information on National History Day in Colorado, click here.

Inside Energy Launches New Insider Network for Readers

Inside Energy is a collaborative journalism initiative of partners across the U.S. focused completely on energy coverage. The team is excited to announce a new way to stay connected to its down-to-earth energy reporting: the Inside Energy Insider Network. Subscribers can choose to receive a bimonthly newsletter, get information about community engagement initiatives, and even elect to make themselves available as sources for the project's reporting. Anyone who is interested can sign up and specify their preferences here: http://insideenergy.org/insiders

SAM Hosts Open House to Celebrate 59 Years of Rocky Mountain PBS

Submitted by Laura Sampson, SAM Marketing Chair

On January 30, 2015, Rocky Mountain PBS proudly celebrated 59 years of broadcasting. To commemorate the occasion, the volunteers of Station's Archived Memories (SAM) hosted an Open House in Studio 1 to display a portion of the extensive Rocky Mountain PBS archives that have been meticulously archived by volunteers over the past fifteen years. The entire staff (KTSC, KRMJ, KRMA, KUVO and I-News) as well as the RMPBS Governing and Volunteer Boards were invited to browse the display throughout the day.

Station's Archived Memories, founded in 2000, continues to grow as a totally unique project within the entire public broadcasting system. The archive project was volunteer-created and continues to be volunteer-driven. Over the past fifteen years, volunteers have collected, identified and developed an incredible archive of the station's history that contains a massive combined collection of over 76,000 documents, local productions, photographs, memorabilia and oral histories. The entirely digitized archives are available for use and research by Rocky Mountain PBS staff and volunteers as well as by the greater public.

To start off the anniversary day, a staff meeting was held in the station's teleconference room prior to the opening of the SAM exhibit. The meeting was dedicated to outlining the history of Station's Archived Memories and SAM has become an integral part of Rocky Mountain PBS. Speakers extolled the dedication and talent of the SAM volunteers and explained some of the massive contents of the RMPBS archives as well as ways in which Rocky Mountain PBS staff uses the archives on a regular basis. Click here to watch videotaped staff testimonials.

Aside from celebrating the station's 59th anniversary, the purpose of the SAM Open House was to increase awareness of the depth of Rocky Mountain PBS history that SAM has archived that can assist in the production of current and future programming, provide answers to historic questions, provide materials for station or community events, publications, displays and more – particularly as the staff prepares for the station's fast-approaching milestone 60th anniversary that will begin in January 2016.

As an additional way to honor the Rocky Mountain PBS milestone anniversary, an historical video was produced jointly by staff and SAM volunteers. "The First 59 Years – A History of Rocky Mountain PBS" premiered to the RMPBS staff and volunteers on January 30. The 10-minute video can be viewed online: RMPBS.org/SAM.

The SAM exhibit, displayed throughout the main studio, included superbly organized "By-The-Decade" collections of memorabilia, photographs, local productions, research, oral histories and more. There was even a "Photo Booth" where staff and volunteers could have their photograph taken to commemorate the station's 59th anniversary. The interactive exhibits encouraged guests to search the SAM computerized databases to discover and browse the variety of content within the archives, to search for specific photographs, to listen to oral history interviews or to find answers to curious questions pertaining to the history of Rocky Mountain PBS.

Are you interested in being a part of Station's Archived Memories? This year-round effort welcomes item donations and volunteers on an ongoing basis.

Contact SAM:
Office: 303-620-5734 or SAM@rmpbs.org
Visit SAM Online: RMPBS.org/SAM or National Friends of Public Broadcasting

SAM Open House 2015

Super School News Featured in CPB

Excerpts from CPB Station Spotlight

"Being a Super 6 Newscaster for my elementary school is one of the memories from childhood that has stayed with me for the last 20 years. It was a great boost for my11 year old self-esteem and something that I have always been proud of. I have gone on to pursue a career in wildlife and even though it isn't journalism I count my experience as a newscaster in the 5th grade as one of the building blocks for my professional life today," 
— Kristin Cannon, 1990 Super School News reporter

In Colorado, Rocky Mountain PBS mentors and teaches 5th and 6th graders the fundamentals of television journalism through Super School News. For the past 35 years, Rocky Mountain PBS staff and volunteers have helped students prepare television reports for their schools.

Super School News, the longest-running locally-produced television series in Colorado, is aligned with Colorado Academic Standards. Students learn about deadlines, script writing, self-confidence, teamwork, and communication.
"The scope of ‘lifetime lessons' learned and garnered through participating in SSN goes far beyond television," said Laura Sampson, Rocky Mountain PBS volunteer since 1974. "This program provides building blocks for kids and truly prepares students for their future lifetime experiences."

Click here to read more of the Station Spotlight article and view photos and video.

National Friends of Public Broadcasting to Honor Outstanding Volunteers

Submitted by Laura Sampson, Trustee/National Friends of Public Broadcasting

As we all know, volunteers play a critical role in the success of Rocky Mountain PBS. One of the primary missions of National Friends of Public

Broadcasting (NFPB) is to honor exceptional volunteers, volunteer groups, community advocates, volunteer-lead projects and extraordinary volunteer coordinators from stations across the country. If there is an excellent Rocky Mountain PBS volunteer that you feel should be nominated for a national award, please contact our Rocky Mountain PBS Volunteer Coordinator, Susan Barber (susanbarber@rmpbs.org) or call 303-620-5715.

As the Rocky Mountain PBS volunteer coordinator, Susan is asked by National Friends to select and submit Rocky Mountain PBS nominations for national awards. Click on any title below to learn about the qualifications and/or previous recipients of each award.

February 2015 Legislative Update

Submitted by Laura Sampson, APTS Leadership Council Representative

As reported in February by the Association of Public Television Stations (APTS), President Barack Obama released his fiscal year 2016 budget outlining his funding priorities for the next fiscal year. APTS was very pleased that this budget included the following funding:

  • $445 million in two-year advance funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) in FY 2018
  • $40 million in FY 2016 for Interconnection, the first of four planned years of funding
  • $25.7 million in FY 2016 for the Ready To Learn grant program

APTS was also pleased that the President has continued to support the critical two-year advance funding for Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) and included the first year of interconnection funding in this FY 2016 budget. And, after years of proposing the consolidation of Ready To Learn, President Obama included level funding for Ready To Learn as a stand-alone program, recognizing the important work that many public broadcasting stations and PBS are doing in educational media.
The budget reaffirmed the Administration's commitment to public television's mission of education, public safety and civic leadership. Inclusion in the President's budget does not guarantee that this funding will be appropriated, but it is an important first step. The Association of Public Television Stations (APTS) will continue to monitor updates as the FY 2016 funding process moves forward.

Tell Your Member of Congress to Support Public Media

Submitted by Laura Sampson
APTS Leadership Council
National Friends of Public Broadcasting
RMPBS Volunteer since 1974

Help secure the future of public media by emailing your legislators in Washington to let them know how much you value the programming on Rocky Mountain PBS. While federal funding for public media only amounts to $1.35 per American per year, it is an irreplaceable source of money that is needed. This funding allows Rocky Mountain PBS to provide you with the best educational, news and music programming that is not available anywhere else. The federal investment in public broadcasting is a tiny portion of the federal budget – only one hundredth of one percent (.01%). Eliminating federal funding for public media would have almost no impact on the nation's debt, but the loss to local communities across the country would be devastating.

"Friend" Protect My Public Media on Facebook. AND, please contact your Member of Congress in support of public media today. Your action will make a difference! TAKE ACTION NOW.

Rocky Mountain PBS Volunteer Serves as Trustee on National Friends of Public Broadcasting 

Rocky Mountain PBS Volunteer, Laura Sampson, has been elected to serve a 3rd term as a Trustee of National Friends of Public Broadcasting. In addition to serving as a Trustee, Laura is the organization's secretary, member of the Awards Committee, web master and Chairperson of the National Friends Web and Social Media Committee. Laura has been a dedicated volunteer for Rocky Mountain PBS since 1974 and a member of National Friends since 1991.

Established in 1971, National Friends is a nonprofit membership organization whose mission is to support volunteerism within public broadcasting through leadership, education, training, mentoring and recognition. It is an organization that serves as a resource to foster local volunteer professionals to learn from one another, share information and work together to advance the cause of public broadcasting in their local communities.

Members of National Friends include volunteer managers, volunteers and staff representatives from small, medium and large public media markets across the country. Rocky Mountain PBS is a longtime Patron member of National Friends. Active Rocky Mountain PBS volunteers interested in the advancement of public broadcasting are invited to join National Friends.

As a trustee of National Friends of Public Broadcasting, Laura will be attending the 2015 PBS Annual Meeting in Austin (May 11-13) where she will participate in the National Friends workshop and concurrent sessions.

SAVE THE DATE:  Volunteer Celebration and Open House, April 17, 2015 in Denver

Mark the date on your calendar: April 17, 2015 4:30-7:30 pm (tentative times) and join us as we celebrate the contributions of the RMPBS volunteers! Plans are underway to make this an exciting, informative and fun celebration. Rocky Mountain PBS has a long tradition of working with generous, talented and committed volunteers. Volunteers are critical to the work of the network and this is the time when we show our gratitude to all of you. Invitations will come by email in March. 

Oscar Watch

The AMERICAN EXPERIENCE production "Last Days in Vietnam," directed and produced by Rory Kennedy, was nominated for an Academy Award® for Documentary Feature. "Last Days in Vietnam" will premiere on AMERICAN EXPERIENCE on Tuesday, April 28.

Volunteer Appreciation - Thank You for Your Support!

Thanks to Pledge Phone Bank Volunteers

Thanks go to our delightful volunteers who "staffed" our Denver pledge phone banks on February 10th  which are pre-taped for our March fundraising.  They don't actually answer the phones, they just have to pretend to answer the phones.  We call upon their acting skills and the reviews are superb.  We thank Karen Hays, Joyce Jappelle, Lois Walton, Renee Marcellis, Audrey Sherrod, Shirley Belz and Lata Mahapatro for their support and for taking time out of their day to spend three hours in our studio---away from the glorious sunshine.

Thanks to the Superstars Behind Super School News

On February 11th and 18th, the Denver studio was filled with excited students, proud parents and dedicated teachers for the taping of Super School News. The building was buzzing with the anxious voices of the young anchors who had been practicing for weeks to deliver a great news report. Of course, none of this would have been possible without the dedicated volunteers who make Super School News a reality. Thanks to the amazing Janell Hetrick and Ginger Sheehy Tatic, who work so hard to coordinate every detail and coach the students. Another big thanks goes to the coaches, who get the students ready for their big day: Jackie Perleberg, Janet Weisheit, Leslie Smith, Bill Smith, Betty Flaten, Mike Cawthra, Rich Goben and Kathy Crisler. Thanks to the energetic tour guides Luis Antunez, Cynthia Nagel, Donna Prince and Lyman Spalding. And thanks to Dona Dodson, who records the CDs for SSN. You are all amazing and we couldn't do it without you.

Oh, Those Magnificent Mega-Mailing Volunteers!

Submitted by Patricia Laverty

I want to thank the wonderful folks who have volunteered for what we're now calling the "Mega-Mailing Project!" That's our mailing to several thousand of our loyal members, asking them to consider including Rocky Mountain PBS in their will or other estate plans. This is a vital project, because it will help strengthen our financial foundation for years, even generations, to come.

Some of these volunteers are already regulars on the mega-mailing project, and some are just getting started or waiting for the right opportunity, but we treasure them all: Shirley Belz, Consuelo Bennett, Kira Broer, Darryl Brown, Cathy Buhler, Carol Clark, Louanne Clemmer, Carolyn Clemmer-Smith, Ellyn Crago, Pam Herrlein, Joyce Jappelle, Janet Kilbride, Stephanie Koch, Eileen Koob, Kathleen Malesardi, Yvonne Marshall, Judi Martine, Andrea Meier, Gwen Meserko, Linda Miyamoto, Su Morrison, Marge Romberger, Donna Shelley, Teddi Wiest-Kent, and finally, the volunteer crew from Buckley Air Force Base, who were here on February 25!

Many, many mega-thanks to them all! If you're interested in joining them, please call me at 303-620-5706 or email me at patricialaverty@rmpbs.org.

Thank You, Lauren!

Submitted by Marissa Johnson

Big thanks (and kudos!) to Lauren Simmons for her excellent detective work in tracking down copyright ownership of old KRMA productions! Lauren spent two days reading through dusty files and made an insurmountable project do-able! It was such a delight to work with you, Lauren - thanks so much!!!!

Thanks to Grand Junction Community Cinema Volunteers

Community Cinema took place on January 21st at the Mesa County Library, with an advance screening of "A Path Appears: Breaking the Cycle of Poverty". KRMJ would like to thank Chriss Secrest for representing RMPBS at this event and David Goe for his creative talent in poster design.

Thanks, Patricia!

KRMJ would like to thank Patricia Amadeo for the work she does on the community calendar for Western Colorado.

Events / Programming

Check the Rocky Mountain PBS website for breaking information about station events at rmpbs.org/events.

  • Family Science Night – Green Science/Environmental Science – 6pm March 5 John McConnell Math & Science Center of Western Colorado, Grand Junction. For more information, click here or call (970) 254-1626.
  • Denver Preschool Program Showcase – 9am to 3pm March 7 at the Westin Hotel, 1672 Lawrence St. Click here for more information.
    To RSVP, email ellen@dpp.org or call 303.595.4DPP(4377).
  • "Cancer: The Emperor of all Maladies" Screening and Panel Discussion
    - Denver: Rocky Mountain PBS 5:30pm March 18 at 1089 Bannock St.
    - Colorado Springs: 8am March 18 at the Tim Gill Center for Public Media
    - Grand Junction 5:30pm March 19 at Colorado Mesa University
    For more information and to RSVP, visit rmpbs.org/cancerhope
  • Community Cinema: The Homestretch
    - Colorado Springs: 7pm March 5 Tim Gill Center for Public Media –
    - Mancos: 6pm March 19 Mancos Public Library
    - Durango: 6:45pm March 24 Durango Public Library
    Click here for more information


To check out programming features and changes, go to the Rocky Mountain PBS website. Or go straight to rmpbs.org/enews where you will be able to request our automatic weekly newsletter (e-news) and monthly TV schedule (e-promo).

There are MANY ways to watch Rocky Mountain PBS content besides TV. You can stream our shows on the RMPBS website, on YouTube, on the KUVO app (where you can also stream KUVO radio live), or on the PBS and PBS Kids apps. You can also watch on Apple TV, Roku, Google Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV stick, XBox, Amazon Prime, Hulu, iTunes and more. Learn more at rmpbs.org/anywhere.



Volunteer Vision was our quarterly newsletter mailed to Rocky Mountain PBS volunteers. It featured articles on the latest news and events for our volunteer corps. Click below to read archived issues of Volunteer Vision in PDF format.

(You will need Adobe Acrobat to view these files. If you don't have it, you can download it for free here.)

Suggestions for articles, news updates or questions for Volunteer Vision can be e-mailed to the editor.


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