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Kelly McCullough, who leads one of the nation’s largest PBS stations, is this year’s inductee into the Alumni Hall of Fame at Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication.
McCullough, a 1982 Cronkite graduate, is general manager of Eight, Arizona PBS, a station that reaches more than 1.9 million households across the state on three television channels. McCullough’s leadership has brought Arizona PBS to new heights, diversifying local programming, increasing membership and expanding the station’s commitment to the community.
“I am so extremely proud and humbled to join the esteemed ranks of Cronkite Hall of Fame inductees,” McCullough said. “The Cronkite School provided me with an incredible launching pad into a career that has been exceptionally interesting and rewarding and it continues to do so for hundreds of grads each year.”
McCullough has been at Arizona PBS for much of the past 30 years, first working in fundraising TV production. In 1986, he became manager of viewer marketing, increasing the station’s revenue 50 percent and boosting membership 40 percent over seven years. He also served as associate general manager before being named general manager in 2008.
As general manager, McCullough is responsible for all aspects of Arizona PBS, including strategic planning, community partnerships, business development, programming and multimedia operations. He played an instrumental role in the station’s recent union with the Cronkite School, making it the largest media organization operated by a journalism school in the world.
“Kelly has shaped Eight, Arizona PBS into one of the country’s top public television stations,” said Cronkite School Dean Christopher Callahan. “I am thrilled to welcome him into our Alumni Hall of Fame, and I am excited to continue working with him as we build a game-changing journalism learning environment.”
During his time working within PBS, McCullough has received 20 PBS awards for development and promotion and five Rocky Mountain Emmy Awards. He also has been a speaker numerous times at PBS conferences and other organizations.
McCullough studied broadcast management at the Cronkite School. He also earned an MBA from ASU’s W. P. Carey School of Business. In the community, he is a member of the Arizona Office of Tourism Advisory Council, the Alliance of Arizona Nonprofits Board of Directors, the Arizona Tourism & Lodging Association Board, the EVIT media advisory board and the Taliesin West Board of Stewards.
He also is a member of the Cronkite School’s Endowment Board of Trustees, a group of the Valley’s top media leaders who help plan the annual Cronkite Luncheon at which the Cronkite Award for Excellence in Journalism is presented each year to a leading journalist.
McCullough is the 46th inductee into the Cronkite Hall of Fame, joining Pulitzer Prize-winning Los Angeles Times reporter Julie Cart, CNN International’s Becky Anderson and Arizona Diamondbacks President Derrick Hall, among others.