Emporia, KS

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Something to Think About


Steve Sauder is president of Emporia's Radio Stations, Inc. the owners of KVOE-AM 1400, Country 101.7 and Mix 104.9. Steve has been in a leadership position with ERS, Inc., since 1987.

October 1, 2014

  No secret about my feeling on our Governor - not a Sam Brownback fan and not alone in this!

          My uncle Harold lives in Independence and like my dad when he speaks it makes good sense to listen.

          He shared with me a flyer from “Kansans for Kansas Values” which described the Brownback leadership style as “a real circus act.”

          Here’s what it said: “Just follow the leader” has been the style of leadership during the Sam Brownback years as Kansas governor. Like circus elephants parading in an arena, far-right Republicans have latched their trunks firmly onto the tails in front of them and followed Brownback’s every move, knowing full well that if they don’t move on his commands, they will face his wrath… and be kicked out of his circus. He’s done it before… and he’ll do it again!”

          The Brownback administration truly has been a circus complete with slight of hand, deception and promises that can never be kept. It’s a show, but unlike the circus there won’t be a happy ending.

          An editorial from the Hays Daily News reprinted in the Gazette had a good example of the Brownback style.

          Seems “the Kansas Division of the Budget told seven state agencies to prepare budgets showing more efficiencies.”

          This obviously was speaking to preparing for more cuts due to low revenue expectations, but when the Gov’s office was asked about the instructions from the Budget office they said they were looking “for ways to govern better and be good stewards of the taxpayer’s money.”

          What a crock, they already have cut budgets to the bone!

          Their explanation is as transparent as the “loans” Brownback’s Lt. Governor made twice to their campaign right before reporting deadlines to make their numbers look better than they really were.

          Hopefully, Kansas voters are paying attention.

          Governor Brownback has made Kansas the laughing stock of this political cycle and the only way to fix that nationwide perception is to toss him out on his ear.

          With the election is just over a month away now is the time to register and prepare to vote. The future of Kansas is absolutely in the balance.

          I’m Steve Sauder.

September 24, 2014

Wowzer! Not sure that’s a word, but I am sure Kansas has quite a race going on for the United States Senate.

          In the incumbent’s corner we have Republican Pat Roberts – the wiley veteran of 8 terms in the House of Representatives and 2 terms as a Senator from Kansas.

          The challenger is Independent candidate Greg Orman – a political unknown until recently, but a man with a plan and plenty of resources behind him.

          This will be a difficult decision for many Kansas voters.

          Senator Robert’s longevity was used against him in the hotly contested primary election where he won but failed to capture a majority of the votes.

          Robert’s has a sparkling record of leadership and accomplishment in Washington where is noted for important positions especially in agriculture, health care and defense. If he loses Kansas loses its most influential voice on the beltway.

          Orman was raised by his mother in Minnesota. He spent summers

working in his dad’s furniture store warehouse in Stanley, Kansas. He’s been an over achiever from the get-go. He earned a spot in the American Legion’s Boy’s Nation in WashingtonD.C. in 1986 and that’s where he met President Ronald Regan. He graduated from Princeton in 1991.

          Shortly after college Orman developed an efficient lighting system he built into a business he eventually sold to K C Power and Light. From that early success Greg Orman has had the golden touch starting running several very successful companies.

          Monday Orman released his required financial disclosure. The release indicated assets between $21.5 and $85.9 million and an annual income between $917,000 and $4.5 million. Taking the reported assets at their lowest number puts Greg Orman among the wealthiest U.S. Senators.

          Actually, it appears Kansans have a great choice. A long term veteran of Washington politics who is a cinch to hold a high ranking position if the Senate is controlled by Republicans; or the brash newcomer who has a knack for success and has pledged to be a problem solver in D.C. rather than a hard core politician.

          This is a tough decision. Hope you care enough to vote in November.

          I’m Steve Sauder.

September 17, 2014

The recent Supreme Court appointment by Governor Brownback seems to have raised little, if any attention by voters. Governor Brownback chose his former Chief of Staff and recent appointee to the Kansas Court of Appeals, Caleb Stegall for the post over Court of Appeals Judge Karen Arnold-Burger, and Emporia’s Merlin Wheeler, the Chief Judge of the 5th District covering Lyon and Chase Counties.

Brownback’s selection of Stegall was not unexpected, but certainly did open him up for criticism for making an obvious political choice over candidates many thought were most qualified.

Paul Davis and Anthony Hensley and a host of other Democrats, of course were critical. Ryan Wright with the Kansas Value Institute said “Brownback placed trust in the least qualified and least experienced nominee.”

Several critics said the obvious choice was Arnold Burger because of her Court of Appeals experience. Plus being a female she would have helped with gender balance since the Supreme Court is under represented by women.

Once again our Governor did not choose to be obvious, smart or clever. He appointed his friend and former aide.

Monday’s Gazette carried a story from the Wichita Eagle suggesting the ”Judicial selection system worked.”


Unlike Court of Appeals selections the Governor did consider candidates proposed to him from the Kansas Nominating Commission. It appears the Commission did their job selecting: Stegall, a bright new face; Wheeler a tried and trusted, long serving veteran; and Arnold- Burger a well qualified female with next level experience.

Agreed, the system worked.

Governor Brownback did nothing wrong, he just was predictable.

A true test for the Governor will be if he gets re-elected if he tries to eliminate the Nominating Commission for the Supreme Court.

Locally we won by not losing Merlin Wheeler who is an outstanding judge.

The Governor should have taken a longer look. He missed a good opportunity to pick a good man.

I’m Steve Sauder

September 3, 2014

          The second Saturday in September is World AFib Awareness Day. When that message arrived from KU Med it hit home with me because I have dealt with Atrial Fibrillation for about 20 years.

          AFib is the most common type of irregular heartbeat. It occurs when one or both of the upper chambers of the heart – called the atria – don’t beat the way they should. This can cause blood to pool in the left atrium, where a blood clot can form. If that clot breaks away, it can travel to the brain, where it can cause a stroke.

          AFib won’t kill you, but a stroke can, so those of us with AFib pay a lot of attention to our blood thickness. A scary fact is that 1/3 of people with AFib will have a stroke at some point.

AFib affects more than 2.7 million people in the United States. The odds of developing AFib go up with age. Amazingly, some people have AFib, but experience no symptoms.

Some of the most prevalent symptoms of Atrial Fibrillation are:

  • Racing, irregular heartbeat

  • Fluttering in the chest

  • Heart palpitations

  • Dizziness

  • Weakness

  • Chest pain

  • Shortness of breath

  • Sweating

  • Fatigue when exercising

  • Faintness

If you’d like to know more about AFib there is a not for profit organization (Global Atrial Fibrillation Alliance) founded for the purpose of bringing patients, physicians and industry together for the common goal of improving the knowledge, awareness and support for the management of AFib.  Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more info on how to get involved.

On September 13th there will be a World AFib Awareness Day at Kansas City’s Crown Center Hotel. Attendees will learn not only about diagnostic treatment and tools, but also about using things like yoga and lifestyle changes to manage AFib.  Register online at www.tinyurl.com/GAFA2014

AFib won’t kill you, but that stroke can!

I’m Steve Sauder and there’s something to think about.

August 27, 2014

          Living in Emporia just gets better.

          This past weekend locally was amazing. The ALS effort leads a list of accomplishments any community would envy.

          Gary Ace, Paul Hastings and their merry bunch of volunteers took full advantage of the Ice Bucket Challenge rage and reached numbers beyond belief – nearly $70,000 raised.

          Beef Fest has withstood the test of time. The cattle industry has seen good and bad times, feast and famine and riches and otherwise. Yet, these folks have maintained this annual event. They are a hardy bunch indeed.

          Disc golf, neat old cars and the BBC were also carried out this past weekend. E-Town was a happening place.

          Add in the return of our college students and the buzz was more than noticeable.

          Speaking of ESU one unofficial report on enrollment suggests about a hundred and twenty more students on campus now versus last year. That is a good thing.

          Flint Hills Tech just keeps growing, adding and impressing.

          A strong leader at both schools explains a lot.

          Tip of the hat to Team Schnak heading to Lake Tahoe to ride their bikes for Juvenile Diabetes. Sounds like a lot of fun for a good cause.

          The Willis Peet military service 18 years after his death was very appropriate - nicely done.

          Emporia’s United Way Drive is off and running. Another thing our town can brag about. We raise annually upwards of $600,000. Pittsburg, Kansas, about our size has a goal of $300,000. Hmmmmmm.

          Just a little thing, but it’s nice to live in a community where our infrastructure is important enough to address it on an annual basis. Good job City of Emporia leaders.

          Last, but not least we have some pretty cool foundations in Emporia that make a difference in our lives almost daily. Thanks to the Jones Foundation, the Reeble Foundation, the Trussler Foundation, the Clint Bowyer 79 Fund and the Hopkins Foundation.

          Emporia, Kansas is a wonderful place to call home for many of reasons. Hoping you appreciate Emporia as well.

          I’m Steve Sauder


August 20, 2014

          We’ve all heard about ALS. Many people know about ALS because of Lou Gehrig the great Yankee first baseman who contracted the disease, was forced to retire at age 36 and made his famous “I am the luckiest man on the face of the earth” speech.

          A-myo-trophic Amyotrophiclateral sclerosis (ALS) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. It strips its victim’s muscles of necessary nourishment.

          For the past 14 years Dr. Gary Ace has championed the Walk to Defeat ALS in Emporia. This year’s Walk will be Saturday at Jones Park. Registration starts at 7:30 with Walking starting at eight.

          Recently the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge has gone viral to say the least with multi-millions of dollars being raised, not to mention the tremendous increase in awareness about ALS.

          Gary challenged me last week to take the ice and I did so on Sunday. I then challenged the folks at KVOE to get dunked this Friday at seven AM.

          Somehow the KVOE challenge and the fire department got connected and now we are having the ALS Fire Hose Challenge at 7 AM, Friday, and everyone, including you are invited.

          Longbine Auto Plaza’s staff is joining us and we want anyone with interest to come and get soaked for ALS.

          Quick story. When telling some of the folks at KVOE about this challenge it was suggested it might beinconvenient to get drenched at seven and be back at work by eight.

          Yesterday listening to Dennis Fish on the Talk of Emporia describe the diagnosis process his wife Jeri went through to confirm she had ALS it struck me that their dilemma defines real inconvenience.

          So, this is your official invitation to join us Friday morningat seven at 1420 C of E Drive to get a little inconvenienced in the name of ALS.

          ALS is a cruel disease. Please come join us.

          I’m Steve Sauder