In His 20 Years of Farm Broadcasting

Dave Schumacher (KTRS, St. Louis, MO) says that “One of the more frequently asked questions I run into in my travels is: How did you become a farm broadcaster, and better yet how were you able to remain a farm broadcaster on a major metropolitan radio station for 20 years?” Twenty years ago this April 15, Dave had just left the National Stockyards, where he had been a livestock commission man and one of the cattle auctioneers for many years. “I found myself not out of work, but with one less job as I was still farming and auctioneering full-time. It was about this time I received a phone call from the station manager of a new power house radio station in the Belleville IL/St. Louis MO, area wanting me to be their ‘farmguy’. I did not return their call because I had never been in a radio station no less wanting to be their ‘farmguy’. As Dave recalls, “It was early March, and I was ‘working ground’ not far from the location of the station when they called again. This time I answered and told them I would be right over.” Tractor and all, Dave drove right into the parking lot. “I introduced myself as their new ‘farmguy’.” A few days later, he went on-the-air on what was then WIBV, which eventually became 550 KTRS. “Little did I know 20 years later I would still be their ‘farmguy’. That brings us to today where I am still with the 550 KTRS family. I am the only remaining member of the original staff,” he said.

Dave adds, “I have had great support from the private ownership of the station for bringing the world of agriculture to the radio audience (1 hour a day, 6 days a week for 20 years).” Dave has covered stories on the local, state, and national levels for agriculture, consumers, growers, and industry. “I have had the opportunity to meet great people in all walks of life through interviews, conferences and personal appearances.” Dave concludes, “I think farm broadcasting gives one the platform to bring the stories of rural America into the lives of those who have never had the experience of rural life. I would encourage the youth of today to consider a career in the field of agricultural reporting or some form of media.”