Dennis Switzer entered the radio business in 1977 when he took his first part-time job with KROE in Sheridan, Wyoming. This turned into a full-time job in 1980, and since then has been on the air. He spent the last 30 years learning how to run a radio station, with the last 13 at KKTY in Douglas.
Dennis has a strong commitment to Douglas. Ranchers find out how weather will affect their daily lives, parents can hear a play-by-play of basketball or football games, and all of Douglas can find out what’s happening in town. Dennis discovered what sets his radio station apart from the others, is personalization of information available for the people of Douglas.
This commitment to Douglas almost came to a halt in November of 2002. A fire started in an old 3-story brick building where the radio station broadcasted from the ground floor. Dennis was on his way to church when he received a phone call from the Fire Chief telling him about the fire. He went to the radio station, and found that the fire seemed to be coming from the floors above. KKTY-AM was back on the air later that same day, and KKTY-FM resumed broadcasting a week later when the cable was repaired.
Dennis knew that he wouldn’t be able to stay on the air for very long if the building he rented had to be closed for renovations. He decided to talk with Converse County Bank to see what could be done. They suggested an SBA 7(a) loan. The perfect building was located, and with Converse County Bank and SBA working together, Dennis was in a new building in no time.
The station has since purchased the “Green Broadcasting Bus” from the Mills Fire Department. Althought the bus vehicle used to be a hazardous materials bus, Dennis saw potential and it has been turned into a roving broadcast studio used during State Fair for private interviews out of the wind and weather.
Dennis is very active with chamber events and gives them a lot of promotion. He is on the board of the Converse Area New Development Organization, CANDO, the economic development agency for the City of Douglas and Converse County, has been on the library board for the last six years, is active in his church, and promotes community activities.
Dennis has three employees and a successful radio station dedicated to giving Douglas what it wants to hear. You can find him at 247 Russell Avenue in Douglas, or listen to him at 1470 AM or 99.3 FM. This isn’t just a job to him it’s the reason he gets up in the morning. Dennis says, “I am living the dream.” A partnership between SBA and Converse County Bank resulted in a dream come true.