John Petersen

News Director

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John Petersen is News Director at KOTA-TV.

John grew up in Rapid City and graduated from Central High School in 1974. He received a Mass Communications from the University of South Dakota in 1979 where he was a USD-Presidential Alumni Scholar.

John started his broadcasting career as a radio announcer in high school and college before he started his TV news career in Rapid City in 1978. He also worked in TV news in Denver, Colorado and Saginaw, Michigan before returning to Rapid City and KOTA-TV in 1994. John is a second-generation broadcaster; Harry Petersen, John's father, worked at KOBH radio prior to World War II and again at KOTA radio after WWII - KOBH was renamed KOTA during the war.

John is a member of the Radio & Television News Directors Association and a 2005 Fellow in the Carole Kneeland Foundation News Director Development Program.

He served as member of the South Dakota Supreme Court's Committee for the Study of Cameras in the Trial Courts. "I have always been an advocate for open, transparent government. Nowhere else than inside the courtroom is openness more important."

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