WIBW-TV: Wikis


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Topeka, Kansas
Branding WIBW-TV 13
Slogan Kansas' News Leader
Channel Digital: 13 (VHF)
Subchannels 13.1 CBS
13.2 myNetworkTV
Translators 44 (UHF) Topeka
(construction permit)
Affiliations CBS Television Network
Owner Gray Television, Inc.
(Gray Television Licensee, Inc.)
First air date November 15, 1953
Callsign meaning Indiana
(original owner of WIBW-AM's predecessor in Logansport, Indiana)
Former channels Analog:
13 (VHF, 1953-2009)
44 (UHF, 2002-2009)
Former affiliations Secondary:
DuMont (1953-1955)
NBC (1953-1967)
ABC (1953-1983)
Effective power 23 kW
Height 421 m
Facility ID 63160
Antenna coordinates 39°0′21.8″N 96°2′58.3″W / 39.006056°N 96.049528°W / 39.006056; -96.049528
Website www.wibw.com

WIBW-TV is the CBS-affiliate in Topeka, Kansas. It broadcasts on channel 13 and is owned by Gray Television. Its transmitter is located near Maple Hill, Kansas. For several years, it broadcasted its digital signal on UHF channel 44.



WIBW-TV, the second television station in Kansas, debuted on November 15, 1953. It was originally owned by the family of the late Senator Arthur Capper along with the Topeka Daily Capital and WIBW-AM 580. It carried programming from all four networks at the time, but was a primary CBS affiliate. Although Topeka was originally part of the Kansas City market, the Cappers persuaded the FCC to make Topeka its own market. While Topeka itself and its close-in suburbs receive the Kansas City stations very well, some parts of northeastern Kansas get a marginal signal at best.

Channel 13 was the only station in Topeka for 12 years. However, Topeka viewers didn't have to worry about missing their favorite shows, since the Kansas City stations all decently cover Topeka and started appearing on cable in the rest of the market in the 1960s.

In 1957, Stauffer Publications, owner of Topeka's other newspaper, the Topeka State Journal, bought Capper Publications. The two newspapers, which later merged as The Topeka Capital-Journal, and WIBW-AM-FM-TV remained the flagships of Stauffer Publications (later renamed Stauffer Communications) until 1995, when it merged with Morris Communications of Augusta, Georgia. As a condition of the sale, Morris had to sell Stauffer's television holdings. Most of the former Stauffer television holdings, including WIBW-TV, were sold to Benedek Broadcasting in 1996. In 2002, Benedek merged with channel 13's current owner, Gray Communications, now Gray Television. The radio stations are still owned by Morris today along with the Capital-Journal.

Beginning in the Fall of 2006, the station's DT2 subcarrier added programming from My Network TV, a network launched by Fox parent News Corporation and a secondary affiliation with the CoLours TV Network.

Channel 13 was the only commercial station in town for 15 years. It lost DuMont when that network shut down in 1955, lost NBC when KTSB (now KSNT) signed on in 1967, and lost ABC when KLDH (now KTKA signed on in 1983. It is still only commercial station in Topeka on the VHF band (the Public Broadcasting System affiliate KTWU, is on channel 11). Not surprisingly, channel 13 has dominated the market for as long has records have been kept.

Currently, Wheel of Fortune airs on WIBW. Jeopardy!, on the other hand, airs on rival ABC affiliate KTKA (Topeka is one of the very few markets to carry Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune on separate stations).


Kansas Now 22

WIBW, along with co-owned Wichita ABC affiliate KAKE and Cox Communications, was one of two partners in Kansas Now 22, a cable channel that aired throughout Kansas. WIBW and KAKE would originate five minute segments of taped news every fifteen minutes, then an additional three minute taped weather segment. The two stations had alternating time slots for both news and weather segments. Live news or weather bulletins from KAKE-TV in Wichita would interrupt normal taped operations on the channel. This ended on 1 January 2009; the channel relaunched on 28 January 2009 as Kansas 22 with content originating from New Vision Television stations (KSNW and KSNT, both NBC affiliates).

Digital Television

Since February 16, 2009, WIBW-TV move back to their pre-analog allotment for their digital operations from channel 44 to channel 13.[1][2] But since the transition, some viewers in the urban areas are having difficulty receiving their signal over-the-air on channel 13. So the FCC granted WIBW a construction permit for a fill-in digital translator on their pre-transition channel 44. [3] The translator would serve the immediate part of the city and the nearby areas west of Topeka.


Current On-Air Talent

Current Anchors

  • Melissa Brunner - weeknights at 5, 6 and 10PM
  • Ralph Hipp - weekdays at 4 and weeknights at 6 and 10PM
  • Dave Johnson - weekday mornings "13 This Morning" and "Midday In Kansas"
  • Amanda Lanum - weekday mornings "13 This Morning" and "Midday In Kansas"
  • Stephanie Ramos - just returned from overseas


  • Marques White - general assignment reporter, also fill-in anchor
  • Ryan Smith - general assignment reporter, also fill-in anchor

13 Storm Team

  • Jeremy Goodwin (AMS Certified Broadcast Meteorologist Seal of Approval) - Chief Meteorologist; weekdays at 4 and weeknights at 5, 6 and 10PM
  • Amy Schmidt - Meteorologist; Saturdays at 6, Sundays at 5:30 and weekends at 10PM
  • Drew Switzer (AMS Seal of Approval) - Meteorologist; weekday mornings "13 This Morning"
  • Rob Peppers - Meteorologist; fill-in

Sports Team

  • J.B. Bauersfeld - Sports Director; weeknights at 6 and 10PM
  • Matt Blanchette - Sports Anchor; Saturdays at 6, Sundays at 5:30 and weekends at 10PM
  • Adam Runyan - sports reporter

Former On-Air Talent

  • Brian Dorman (now main anchor at KODE-TV in Joplin, Missouri)
  • Al Austin
  • Michelle Bandur (now at KMTV-TV in Omaha)
  • Ben Bauman (now at KTKA-TV)
  • Gary Bender
  • Mike Binkley
  • Heather Claybrook (now at WDAF-TV in Kansas City)
  • Homer Cunningham
  • Mark Davidson (now at KSNW-TV in Wichita)
  • Terri-Rae Elmer (later at KFI Radio in Los Angeles)
  • Mike Elliot
  • Don Free (now at the Kansas City Royals)
  • Ron Harbaugh (now at Topeka Public Schools)
  • Amy Hawley (now at KSHB-TV in Kansas City)
  • Jim Doblin (back anchoring at WIBW (AM) radio, former reporter/producer jimdoblin.com)
  • Hilton Hodges
  • Jim Hollis (now at Washburn University)
  • John Holt (now at WDAF-TV in Kansas City)
  • Mike Jerrick (now at Fox News Channel)
  • Gordon Jump
  • Bob Kearns
  • Bernie Koch (Now at the Wichita Metro Chamber of Commerce)
  • Pat Krueger
  • Bill Kurtis
  • Jason Lamb (now at WDAF-TV in Kansas City)
  • Jolene Leiker
  • Mary Loftus
  • Mike Marusarz (now at KSHB-TV in Kansas City)
  • Sandra Olivas (now at KCTV-TV)
  • David Oliver (now at KOLR-TV in Springfield, Missouri)
  • Ron Paradis
  • Steve Physioc
  • Russ Ptacek (now at KCTV in Kansas City)
  • Roger Ready
  • Dave Relihan (now at WIBW (AM))
  • Anne Rubenstein-Tisch
  • Devin Scillian (now at WDIV in Detroit, Detroit and a children's author)
  • Greg Sharpe (now at Husker Sports Network in Lincoln, Nebraska)
  • Russ Shellabarger (now Russ Jamieson) (Left to work at WAGA-TV (Atlanta) in 1981, left WAGA in 1993 to freelance, work for CNN SE Bureau from 1996-1998. Now co-owns a production company in Atlanta (Broadcast Solutions))
  • Lisa Stites (now at KETV ABC Omaha)
  • Tai Takahashi
  • Stella Thurkill
  • Gerry Wallace (retired from KFI in Los Angeles)
  • Fred White (now at the Kansas City Royals)
  • Dana Wright (now at KCTV-TV in Kansas City)

News/Station Presentation

Newscast Titles

  • WIBW News (1985-1994)
  • 13 News (1994-present)

Station Slogans

  • The Spirit of Kansas on WIBW (1985-1988)
  • 13, The Original! (late 1980s)
  • Where Northeast Kansas Turns for News (1996-2000)
  • Where News Comes First (2000-2005)
  • Kansas' News Leader (2005-present)
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  • WIBW is one of the few stations west of the Mississippi River whose call sign begins with the letter W. There are two explanations for this anomaly. One dates to WIBW-AM's roots as a station in Logansport, Indiana. It moved to Topeka in 1927. The move was sponsored by Daily Capital owner and Kansas Senator Arthur Capper, who added a W to the initials of the Indiana station's owner, Indiana Broadcast Works. However, the W/K divide for call signs was not always the Mississippi River, and Kansas was on the eastern side of the original call divide. Thus it was perfectly acceptable to have a W in Kansas.


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