WATCH: As B.C.’s oldest private television station and North America’s only employee-owned broadcaster celebrates 60 years, the future is looking bright for CHEK TV. Tess van Straaten takes you behind the scenes.
Since becoming North America’s only employee-owned television station, Victoria’s CHEK TV has launched a lot of new shows.
It all comes down to our commitment to local programming — and being the voice of Vancouver Island.
“Local news and local programming is critical for our success and it’s been showing a lot of growth,” says CHEK general manager Roy McKenzie. “We are the only stand-alone television station left in Canada and we are breaking the rules here in a good way.”
At a time when other media outlets are cutting back, CHEK is growing.
Since saving the station in 2009, we’ve almost doubled our staff — something unheard of in an industry under attack — and ewe’re expanding our news coverage.
“They’ve been cutting jobs at all other companies across Canada by the hundreds,” says McKenzie. “We are alone and we are surviving and we’re healthy and that’s through the support of the business community and from the viewers.”
And as we celebrate our 60th anniversary, the accolades are pouring in.
“Congratulations to the entire team at CHEK TV in Victoria for 60 years,” prime minister Justin Trudeau said. “You’re the only employee-owned station in North America and it’s a great success story — a Canadian success story — of the little station that could.”
“When we tune in every night we can see all of the experience and wisdom that comes from 60 years of investigative news reporting,” B.C. premier Christy Clark said. “There’s a reason CHEK TV is such a trusted source of news reporting in the province — because you’ve been doing it so well for so long.”
Gordy Dodd is CHEK’s longest-running advertiser at 35 years
CHEK’S longest-running advertiser is Gordy Dodd — famous for his zany Dodd’s Furniture commercials that have been making people laugh for 35 years.
“I like it to be crazy,” Dodd said from the set of his latest commercial shoot. “The more I do this kind of thing people love it and they’re always asking me what’s next!”
As for CHEK, the future is now bright for B.C.’s oldest private TV station.
Stay tuned to see what we do next!
Click on the video above to see a behind-the-scenes tour of CHEK