By Jerrod Knight, KETR
Matt Meinke is the name that belongs to the voice you hear each weekday from 11:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. introducing you to Texas musicians and songwriters and songs you may never have heard before. He’s been in the on-air role of Notably Texan host for more than 15 years and before that he was the host of a KETR program of his own design – the Late Nite Lion, which boasted a mix of club, house, techno, and other electronic rhythm-driven tracks.
All this time, Meinke has also been responsible for the production of station promotional announcements, public service announcements, and other on-air elements which play out automatically throughout the day and night. For the last 15 years, Meinke has held the title of ‘Production Chief,’ making him primarily responsible for the technical assembly, mixing, and scheduling of all prerecorded announcements that KETR listeners hear.
Recently, Meinke was recognized by the Staff Council at Texas A&M University-Commerce for 25 years of dedicated service to the institution, and in each of those years he’s been part of 88.9 KETR’s team.
That’s 25 years of music, feature production, sports broadcasts, appearances at community events, and developing relationships with listeners throughout Northeast Texas and with musicians the world over.
“It's hard to believe so much time has passed during my role here at KETR,” says Meinke. “Working in radio had always been a lifelong dream of mine, and the station has continuously nurtured me and helped turn that dream into a career in broadcasting. It is an honor to help serve my fellow Northeast Texans with entertainment and information that is so greatly needed in our area, and I'm so grateful to the listeners, the station and to A&M-Commerce for helping me to realize this dream through all the years.”
Also recognized for two decades of service this year was KETR’s Operations Manager Kevin Jefferies.
Jefferies’ primary role at 88.9 for the last 15 years has been to oversee and implement the technical aspects of the KETR broadcast and production plant.
He’s coordinated the replacement of the station’s transmitter building, orchestrated the monumental transition between broadcast automation systems, assisted in the acquisition, installation and implementation of the facility’s Audio-over-IP distribution system, and ensured the remote capabilities that have supported COVID-necessary work-from-home situations as well as countless remote sports and programming broadcasts over these many years – LIVE from all over the United States.
Jefferies may be more easily recognized for his work as color analyst alongside play-by-play announcer John Mark Dempsey on Friday nights each fall during Commerce Tiger Football broadcasts.
Jefferies began full-time employment with KETR as News Director in 2004, waking up early in the morning to gather and share the latest from the region and the state while also hosting the KETR morning show for many years. He also took on roles as music director and later hosted middays on the station after his transition to operations duties.
“KETR has been like a second home for me since I was a student at A&M-Commerce,” Jeffries says. “I have met wonderful people, made good friends, and made memories I will always cherish. I have been extremely proud to be part of KETR's growth for all these years and feel like we have made a positive impact for all of Northeast Texas. I have been truly blessed to be able to work somewhere I care about and work with talented, supportive people who have helped the years fly by. I also hope that our work with students over the years has helped spur them on to happy, fulfilling lives & careers.”
Like so many of KETR’s standout employees over the last 47 years, including current General Manager Jerrod Knight and Blacklands Café host John Mark Dempsey, both Meinke and Jefferies had previously been students of the now-defunct Radio and Television Broadcasting academic program at Texas A&M University-Commerce when they first interacted with 88.9 KETR. The program, which ended in 2021 after more than 50 years, introduced thousands of students to the exciting worlds of broadcast and journalism, and was a vital stepping stone for many successful current industry professionals across the nation.
KETR is a public radio station licensed through Texas A&M University-Commerce that serves the communities of Northeast Texas at 88.9 FM and at KETR.org.