• Forecast
  • News Tip
  • Categories
Temperature Precipitation
Estimated read time
2m 45s

Rhonda McBride

By Rhonda McBride 1:04 AM January 20, 2014

Rural Affairs Editor

Alaska truly is the Last Frontier of great storytelling. Although I’ve been a reporter in Alaska since 1988, my “to do” list of stories is ever a work in progress.

Whether it’s finding ways around the extreme weather or geographical challenges, or creative applications of new technology or ancient traditions, Alaskans are always pushing into new frontiers – and the opportunity to bring that story to you in all of its different incarnations is both an honor and privilege.

I guess I’ll always think of myself as a “Bushrat Journo.” Bushrat is a term popularized by the late Governor Jay Hammond. It was his way of saying that even though he lived in the city, his heart was in the Bush.

For me, it speaks to my roots at KYUK, the public radio and TV station in Bethel that broadcasts in both English and Yup’ik, the predominant Native language in Southwest Alaska. I was news director there for almost 10 years and was lucky to have worked alongside some pioneering Alaska Native journalists and storytellers, who shared their culture and subsistence lifestyle with me. From walrus meat, to salmon strips, to mouse food, I’ve had an authentic taste of life in Rural Alaska.

And no matter what job I’ve had, whether it was a producer for the Alaska Public Radio Network, a reporter at KTUU, or a one-year stint as Governor Sarah Palin’s Rural Advisor, this intimate knowledge of life in Rural Alaska has helped me find success. I’m proud to have been recognized three times by the Society of Professional Journalists as a Sigma Delta Chi winner, one of SPJ’s highest honors, for my coverage of rural voting patterns, fetal alcohol syndrome and climate change.

One of the jobs I enjoyed the most was hosting public affairs programs for KAKM-Channel 7, the public television station in Anchorage. I look forward to doing the same for KTVA and Denali Media, to help our audience come to grips with some of rural Alaska’s most pressing issues in both a talk-show format and in special reports. Denali Media’s vision and commitment to bring more in-depth statewide coverage convinces me that the best in Alaska journalism is yet to come.

As a Bushrat reporter, I never feel guilty about my arctic entry being cluttered with shoes and muddy boots. I swear, after all these years, the dust and grit of Bethel is still in my car. We bought it when my son was born, and now he’s grown into a young man.

He and his father have put up with my passion for story telling as long as they can remember, just as I’ve put up with their passion for music. Well, actually, I enjoy it and have tried to join them by strumming on a ukulele or a stand-up bass. Let’s just say I’m a better appreciator of music than I am a player, and there’s no danger of giving up my day job.

Don’t worry. I’ll keep working here at KTVA to bring you those stories with “ah, hah” moments. One thing is true about being a reporter in Alaska. The more you know, sometimes the less you know. That makes every day a new frontier.

Latest Stories

  • Weather

    Weekend weather, March 28

    by KTVA Weather on Mar 28, 18:30

  • News

    Alaska Air National Guard assists in rescue of 2 Saudi pilots from Gulf of Aden

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Mar 28, 18:20

    Airmen from the Alaska Air National Guard, currently deployed to Djibouti, Africa, assisted in the rescue of two Saudi pilots from the Gulf of Aden on Friday. The pilots were rescued off the coast of Yemen after they ejected from their F-15 aircraft, according to various news outlets. Approximately 120 Alaska Air National guardsmen from the […]

  • News

    16 Black Hawk helicopters back in Alaska, ready to help with civilian emergencies

    by Associated Press on Mar 28, 15:20

    Sixteen Army Black Hawk helicopters are back in Alaska and ready to help with civilian medical emergencies after spending nine months in Afghanistan. The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner (http://bit.ly/1MgUB22 ) reports the military helicopters supplement Alaska’s civilian fleet of about two dozen medical helicopters operated by private companies including Life Flight, Life Med and Guardian. In […]

  • Crime

    Man injured in leg in West Anchorage shooting

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Mar 28, 14:15

    Police say a man was struck in the leg by gunfire in a shooting in West Anchorage Saturday afternoon. At around 1 p.m., witnesses say there was a disturbance between two groups of people in a parking lot near the 1300 block of West Northern Lights Boulevard, according to a release from the Anchorage Police […]

  • News

    Government Hill resident reads found letter from 1964 Alaska earthquake

    by Sierra Starks on Mar 28, 13:36

    Friday, March 27, marked the 51st anniversary of the devastating Good Friday earthquake. On that day, just after 5:30 p.m., violent shaking erupted without warning across Southcentral Alaska. It has become known as the most powerful earthquake ever in North America, taking the lives of more than 100 people. This week, Alaska lawmakers passed legislation to […]

  • Politics

    ASD, state lawmakers spar over budget concerns

    by Joe Vigil on Mar 27, 22:51

    First state lawmakers fired off a letter criticizing Anchorage School Board members for passing a budget that included nearly $12 million cut by Gov. Bill Walker in January. Now the Anchorage School Board president is firing back with a letter of his own to state lawmakers. In that letter, Eric Croft says that while the district […]

  • News

    Amanda Knox grateful to ‘have my life back’ after court saga

    by Associated Press on Mar 27, 21:25

          SEATTLE- Amanda Knox says she’s grateful “for the life that’s been given to me” after Italy’s highest court overturned her murder conviction in the slaying of her roommate. Speaking briefly Friday evening to reporters outside her mother’s Seattle home, Knox expressed her thanks “for the justice I’ve received and for the support […]

  • News

    House panel moves bill addressing municipal marijuana regs

    by Associated Press on Mar 27, 21:19

    A bill addressing how municipalities regulate marijuana businesses has moved out of a House committee. The House Judiciary Committee moved a new version of Rep. Cathy Tilton’s bill, which would help define a municipality’s role in regulating marijuana businesses, set a maximum household limit of 24 marijuana plants and add marijuana clubs to the list […]