IPTV History

Iowa Public Television actually began in Iowa in 1967 when the State Educational Radio and Television Facility Board was created and charged with developing a state network to broadcast educational programs. The board was composed of nine members selected in the following manner: three members appointed by the State Board of Regents, three members appointed by the State Board of Education, and three members appointed by the governor, at least one of whom was to be from a private four-year college or university.


  • IPTV premiered This Old Statehouse, Iowa's first program videotaped and edited in HDTV.
  • IPTV provided Fair coverage for the 30th consecutive year.
  • College Wrestling marked its 25th season.


  • Friends of Iowa Public Television officially became an independent organization, The Iowa Public Television Foundation, on July 1, 2001.
  • The Iowa Public Television Foundation received a $1.4 million gift from the estate of Mrs. Betty Camp to be used for the Foundation's endowment.
  • IPTV profiles Iowa students' volunteer activities during ZOOM, a national children's program.
  • Insight Iowa, a program created in response to viewer feedback following the September 11 attacks, debuts. It features issues currently on the minds of Iowans.
  • KDIN-DT in central Iowa was the first television station in the state to broadcast digitally on August 9.


  • Iowa Public Television broadcast the Iowa State High School Wrestling Championships for the 31st and final time in February. Broadcast rights were awarded to commercial television for the following year.
  • Iowa Public Television was the first television network in the state to broadcast a live local HD broadcast, with coverage of the Iowa State Fair Parade. We also provided this exclusive live, local HD coverage in 2003 and 2004.
  • Iowa Public Television broadcast the Iowa High School Volleyball finals in 2002, then took a hiatus as broadcast rights were awarded to commercial television for the following years. Iowa Public Television again began broadcast of these finals in 2006.


  • Iowa Public Television hosted Volunteer Iowa, the nation's first-ever volunteer pledge drive. This drive, aimed at encouraging Iowans to volunteer hours of service for 2003, resulted in more than 419,000 hours of service pledged.
  • KQIN, Davenport, Channel 36, began broadcasting, bringing the number of analog transmitters to 9.
  • KRIN-DT, Waterloo/Cedar Rapids, began broadcasting digitally November 7.


  • The Board of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting held its second-quarter board meeting in Des Moines, and issued a proclamation honoring IPTV for 35 years of service to Iowans.
  • In partnership with the Blank Park Zoo in Des Moines, the network hosted IPTV Kids Weekend at the Zoo in June.
  • KSIN-DT, Sioux City, began broadcasting digitally July 1.
  • The network celebrated its 35th anniversary with a performance by Mark Russell, a donor recognition dinner, and by hosting IPTV Day at the Fair at the 150th annual Iowa State Fair.
  • IPTV and Drake University hosted a preview screening of The Cost of Freedom: Civil Liberties, Security, and the USA PATRIOT Act on September 21, with a discussion from the program's producer following the program. More than 180 people attended the screening.
  • IPTV hosted the 10th annual Iowa DTV Symposium for television professionals across the country October 5, 6, and 7 in Des Moines.
  • IPTV hosted an exclusive premiere of Henry A. Wallace, the network's one-hour documentary, at Pioneer Hi-Bred's international headquarters in Johnston in October.
  • Iowa Public Television hosted listening sessions with viewers in Cedar Rapids, Iowa to hear their feedback about our local programming in December.
  • Iowa Public Television hosted a kick-off event for Aging Out in Iowa to expand awareness about foster care in December.
  • In partnership with AARP, IPTV hosted 60 audience members for a very special evening with Dr. Elizabeth Harper Neeld and the taping of Seven Choices for Healing Grief in December.


  • IPTV welcomed viewers to a live studio recording of The Terrace Hill Piano Competition in our studio in February.
  • IPTV recorded the Waterloo/Cedar Falls Symphony, and distributed flyers and Advance program guides in the lobby prior to the performance on February 5.
  • KIIN-DT, Iowa City, began broadcasting digitally at low power February 2.
  • IPTV hosted 500 people in our studio for a taping of a special by big band leader Hunter Fuerste in April.
  • IPTV recorded the Quad City Orchestra, and IPTV distributed flyers and Advance program guides in the lobby prior to the program in April.
  • Viewers in Sioux City had an opportunity to provide important feedback on IPTV's services during a listening session there April 25.
  • Dan Wardell, host of the IPTV Kids Clubhouse, traveled to Burlington, IA to take part in Teach Children to Save Day in April.
  • KBIN-DT, Council Bluffs, began broadcasting digitally May 4.
  • KTIN-DT, Fort Dodge, began broadcasting digitally at low power 
    May 7.
  • During the summer school recess, IPTV partners with the State Library of Iowa and Iowa's 572 public libraries throughout the state and some bookstores to encourage year-round reading.
  • IPTV hosts events on the ICN, based on books.
  • Pat Mitchell, president and CEO of PBS, visited Iowa for a public town hall meeting, A Conversation with Pat Mitchell, in Des Moines, on June 30.
  • IPTV hosted several high school students, as well as Virginia Governor Mark Warner and Iowa Governor Tom Vilsack for the program Redesigning the American High School, recorded at IPTV with a panel of education experts, on June 9.
  • IPTV and Mediacom officially announced a partnership for the IPTV Kids Channel on Mediacom Cable Channel 18 in Central Iowa, and Mediacom carriage of IPTV's HD channel in Des Moines and Cedar Rapids in August.
  • KHIN-DT, Red Oak, began broadcasting digitally August 19.
    IPTV hosted the first-ever IPTV Day at the Clay County Fair September 16 in Spencer, IA.
  • IPTV hosted David Fanning, producer of Frontline, for several events, including a major donor luncheon, speech to the Des Moines Rotary Club, meetings with Drake and Iowa State students, and meeting with the editorial board, September 29 and 30.
  • IPTV hosted Rebecca Eaton, producer of Mystery! and Masterpiece Theatre, for several events in Eastern Iowa in October.
  • In partnership with Children and Families of Iowa, IPTV encouraged viewers to increase their awareness of domestic abuse or call the Iowa domestic abuse hotline following Breaking the Silence: Children's Stories in October.
  • Iowa Public Television hosted listening sessions with viewers in Atlantic, Iowa to hear their feedback about our local programming in November.


January 2006

  • The Iowa Children's Museum and IPTV hosted a Big Big World Premiere Party in Coralville, IA for more than 300 kids and families on January 2.
  • January 15, Iowa Public Television hosted a one-hour live broadcast aimed at collecting pledges of volunteer hours for 2006. Viewers from across the state pledged more than 1.5 million hours of service for 2006.
  • January 27, IPTV presented a brief preview of African American Lives at Living in Legacy, an I’ll Make Me a World in Iowa Gala Reception.

February 2006

  • February 7, IPTV hosted a screening event in partnership with the African American Historical Museum and Cultural Center of Iowa in Cedar Rapids.
  • February 8, IPTV hosted a luncheon and digital television demonstration for legislators and legislative staffers at the state capitol. Special guests included Dan Gable, Jim Gibbons, Dean Borg, and Mark Pearson.

March 2006

  • March 8, IPTV participated in a luncheon celebrating the Partnership for Healthy Kids at the Iowa state capitol. Dan Wardell participated in getting kids moving as a demonstration of the importance of physical fitness.
  • KYIN-DT, Mason City, began broadcasting digitally at low power March 22.

April 2006

  • Tuesday, April 11, Lionel Lion from Between the Lions and Dan Wardell hosted storytime for students at Plymouth Nursery School in Des Moines.
  • Wednesday, April 12, Lionel Lion from Between the Lions and Dan Wardell hosted storytime for students at Emerson Hough Elementary School in Newton, Iowa, and for students at Grimes Elementary School in Grimes, Iowa.
  • Thursday, April 13, Lionel Lion from Between the Lions and Dan Wardell hosted storytime and educational events for preschoolers, kindergartners, and first graders during IPTV Day at the Library at the new Des Moines Central Library.
  • Thursday, April 13, IPTV hosted viewers for a screening of Iowa's World War II Stories during IPTV Day at the Library at the new Des Moines Central Library. The screening included a discussion with the producer, and three individuals featured in the program.

May 2006

  • Tuesday, May 2, IPTV hosted IPTV Day at the Council Bluffs Public Library, and visited Hinton School with Dan Wardell and Leona Lion from Between the Lions.
  • Wednesday, May 3, IPTV hosted IPTV Day at the Sioux City Public Library's Morningside Branch, and visited Washington Elementary School in Sioux City with Dan Wardell and Leona Lion from Between the Lions.

June 2006

  • Tuesday, June 6, Iowa Public Television began a summer-long initiative as media sponsors of the Jordan Creek Town Centre's Family Fun Nights. Each Tuesday through August 29, IPTV welcomed families with giveaways, discussions with viewers, and coloring sheets. The first Tuesday of every month, Dan Wardell made an appearance for a meet and greet.
  • June 3, IPTV hosted IPTV Day at the Blank Park Zoo. We distributed special Day at the Zoo bags, Arthur was there, and Dan Wardell did story time for the kids in attendance.
  • IPTV, the Iowa End of Life Care Coalition, The American Cancer Society and the Heart Connection worked in partnership to bring together those dealing with pediatric cancer. 15 screening and discussion group sessions were held throughout the state in June. Before and after each broadcast of A Lion in the House, host Morgan Halgren invited viewers to call the Iowa hotline for resource and referral information.

July 2006

  • On Monday, July 2, IPTV and the Cedar Rapids Kernels baseball team hosted Red Green Day at the Kernels. We welcomed the crowd, threw out the first pitch, and sold Red Green merchandise. Following the game, the Kernels showed "Duct Tape Forever."
  • Dan Wardell represented IPTV at Business Horizons Camp as a mentor and counselor July 16-21.

August 2006

  • IPTV welcomed nearly 50,000 visitors to its booth at the Iowa State Fair August 10 - 20. IPTV participated in the Iowa State Fair parade with an entry promoting Clifford the Big Red Dog and an entry promoting a documentary about the parade grand marshal, Bill Riley, on August 9.
  • Tuesday, August 29, IPTV and Making Connections Des Moines co-hosted a premiere screening event forP.O.V.: Waging a Living at Mercy College of Health Sciences. 140 people attended and participated in breakout sessions on policy, education and vocational training, access to better paying jobs, and affordable health care.

September 2006

  • IPTV hosted IPTV Day at the Clay County Fair on September 15. Walt Hackney, an analyst from Market to Market, gave remarks, as did Bill Hayes, IPTV's director of engineering. Hayes talked about IPTV's digital television transition. Dan Wardell hosted hundreds of area kids for story time.
  • September 28 and 29, Mary Bracken attended an Eyes on the Prize screening at the Black Women's Leadership Conference in Cedar Rapids.
  • September 28, IPTV hosted a panel discussion and screening of Remaking American Medicine with Iowa Health Systems and the Iowa Foundation for Medical Care.
  • Dan Wardell walked in a "Healthy Kids" parade in partnership with Hanawalt Elementary School in Des Moines on September 29.


  • Foreign Journalists Visit IPTV - July 2007
    Journalists from the Hebei province in China visited Iowa Public Television to learn about our network, and to see portions of an Iowa Public Television documentary produced several years ago called Old Friends Return to China. The journalists also had an opportunity to tour network headquarters during their visit here. Also in July, journalists from several regions visited IPTV for a tour of headquarters. The journalists were from Bosnia, Japan, and more, and were here with the Iowa Council for International Understanding.
  • "In Honor" Dinners for Iowa's WWII Veterans
    IPTV and the IPTV Foundation worked together to honor Iowa's WWII veterans. More than 50 veterans and their families shared dinner and received a thank-you plaque at each of six dinner events in Oskaloosa, Mason City, Johnston, Marion, Sergeant Bluff, and Walnut. Iowa interviews and brief preview clips of The War helped to set the scene at American Legion Posts and local VFW halls.


  • Nigerian Scholar's Visit to IPTV - April 4, 2008
    Iowa Public Television hosted Elizabeth Lami Anche, part of the Nigerian Leadership Program. Her visit was coordinated by the Iowa Resource for International Service.
  • Visit from 16 Elementary Teachers from Taiwan - April 22, 2008
    IPTV hosted a delegation of 16 elementary educators from Taiwan on Tuesday, April 22. The Educational Telecommunications division briefed the educators on the various services and resources that IPTV provides to support educational efforts within the state.
  • Providing Flood Recovery and Awareness Information - June 2008
    To help Iowans recovering from the devastating natural disasters affecting the state, Iowa Public Television offered two call-in programs. The Iowa Journal expanded to a live, one-hour broadcast featuring experts in public health, disaster aid, mental health, and more. These professionals provided practical advice for Iowans, and they answered questions from viewers during the broadcast. And, Market to Market presented an extra 30-minute program following its regular broadcast. This live broadcast, Market to Market: Disaster Recovery Call-In, featured experts in agriculture answering phone and email questions.
  • Dan Wardell's Reading Road Trip was just what many communities needed during these difficult times. Amid the flooding and early recovery, Dan traveled to Iowa City, Coralville, Bettendorf, Durant, and Muscatine. In Iowa City and Coralville especially, record crowds enjoyed the opportunity to laugh and have fun despite the flooding around them. 
  • In addition, Iowa Public Television's Flood Recovery Web site provided viewers with several resources to help them come back from the devastation in our state, including information for parents on speaking with their children about the disasters.
  • Celebrating the Quad Cities Activities - August 2008
    Iowa Public Television celebrated the Quad Cities with several events in August, including a free DTV session at the Davenport Public Library - Fairmount Branch. Dan Miller accepted proclamations recognizing Iowa Public Television from the Mayors of Davenport and Bettendorf, and Dan Wardell hosted story times at the Putnam Museum in Davenport and the Bettendorf Family Museum. While in the Quad Cities, we listened to community leaders and community members to learn how we can continue to improve and enhance our service in the Quad Cities during a "listening session" in Davenport. There was also a live broadcast of The Iowa Journal from the River Music Experience in Davenport. Dan Miller spoke to the North Scott Rotary Club in Davenport, and Iowa Public Television covered the River Roots Live 2008 festival.
  • PBS President Paula Kerger's Visit to Des Moines - October 23, 2008
    PBS President Paula Kerger visited Iowa on Thursday, October 23. Her busy schedule included a meeting with the editorial board of The Des Moines Register, a speech to the Downtown Des Moines Rotary Club, a meeting with Sen. Tom Harkin, remarks to staff, a speech before the broadcasting and foundation boards, and a speech before a group of major donors.


  • IPTV's 40th Anniversary Reception - September 23, 2009
    Dan Miller spoke at a reception honoring IPTV's 40th Anniversary
  • Market to Market Rural Economic Summit - October 22, 2009
    Market to Market was in Shenandoah, IA to host a Rural Economic Summit broadcast and resource fair.


  • Antiques Roadshow - August 2010
    Antiques Roadshow returned to Des Moines to tape three more episodes of the popular series.


  • Be More Award given to Michael Gartner - February 2011
    Be More Award given to Michael Gartner for leadership in Iowa and support for Iowa Public Television.
  • Antiques Roadshow executive producer Marsha Bemko returns to Iowa - February 2011
    Antiques Roadshow executive producer Marsha Bemko returns to Iowa to show a sneak-peek of the Iowa episodes of the 2010 taping.


  • Be More Award given to Governor Robert Ray, Betty Jean Furgerson, and DuPont Pioneer - October 2012
    Be More Award given to governor Robert Ray for his role in Iowa Public Television's creation, to Betty Jean Furgerson for her support for Iowa Public Television through service on its board; and to DuPont Pioneer for its long-term support for the network.