CLASS OF 2000
John McDonald was general manager of KGFW Kearney and managed its affiliated stations for more than 40 years.
Born in Kansas, John graduated from Abilene High School in 1964 and immediately joined the Navy.
Serving on the USS Guam based in Norfolk, Virginia, he visited with staff members of a local radio station who were doing a “Ship of the Week” program aboard his ship. John recalls: “They told me that all they did was sit and talk…and I liked to sit and I liked to talk, so it sounded like the perfect career choice for me. They didn’t tell me that one day I would start work at 5 a.m. and get home at 8 p.m. or the long trips to do play-by-play and sign on at 5 the next morning.”
After his naval stint, he met with John Howard at KGFW in Kearney who hired John to do the 7 p.m.-Midnight shift.
John worked his way up to Program Director and doubled as Sports Director doing play-by-play. Moving into the Sales Department, John was soon promoted to manager of KGFW in 1974, after just six years at the station. He expanded his station group with KQKY in 1979 and KRNY in 1998.
During this time John served two three-year terms on the Nebraska Broadcasters Association Board of Directors and was elected President of the association in 1983.
John continued to steer KGFW after its sale to Mitchell Broadcasting and later to Waitt Radio.
John Meier passed away in June 2009.