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.

June 17, 2015


Life is short and our health is precious. Aging is something we all face and the ways it unfolds are endless in description.

For Bobbi and me the past year has been one of challenges – some we were aware of and unfortunately some we learned about on the fly.

The good news is we think we see a light at the end of a tunnel. 

We’ve had awesome doctors offering medical advice, talented and dedicated physical therapy professionals, good drugs and effort on our part working together to find answers.

In addition to my ongoing battles with A-Fib and a bulky back, I found time to endure a vitreous hemorrhage resulting in laser surgery and finally a vitrectomy to remove the excess blood from my eye. 

Today my vision has been restored, my heart is beating quietly again and my back has settled down thanks to some excellent care. 

Bobbi had her right knee replaced on Monday and the results are already very positive. She’s uncomfortable from the procedure, but can already tell the source of much of her pain has been taken away. 

Like I said before our optimism is high. We appreciate the help we have received from our friends in the form of prayer.

Miracles?  Well maybe not, but not many days ago we doubted the future, but today life looks a lot better. God is good! Praise the Lord!

I’m Steve Sauder


June 10, 2015

In these days of news most of us aren’t all that pleased to hear – i.e., stories from the circus in our state capital often disparaging our public schools – it is my pleasure to mention some really encouraging news coming from right from here in Emporia that indicates one school district is trying to be efficient.

          Last week USD 253’s Superintendent, Theresa Davidson announced changes within the district concerning the Turning Point Academy.

          Turning Point is a school designed for youngsters needing a non-traditional educational experience. The project has been successful, but with funds always restricted the district has not been able to give Turning Point its own home.

          The new plan has kindergarten through eighth grade of Turning Point moving into the WilliamAllen WhiteElementary School building. The older youngsters will move to EmporiaHigh School creating two so-called “school with-in a school” situations.

Principal Dathan Fisher from W.A. White moves to EHS to fill a vacancy; Tell Kirk, Turning Point’s current principal moves to W.A. White where he will become principal for both the elementary school and Turning Point’s K thru 8.

Acknowledging the schools involved may experience unknown consequences there appears to be a number of positive outcomes from these moves.

          Like: One less administrator in USD 253, permanent homes for TurningPointAcademy students, a significant cost savings by closing the Kansas Avenue building while maintaining the option for students to choose an alternative style education.

          Nice job USD 253!

And we also note with optimism the work of surrounding school districts as they struggle with decisions on space and efficiency. We appreciate the efforts of school officials to be good stewards of the public’s money.

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

May 27, 2015

          One definition of paradox is: “A person or thing that seems to possess contradictory qualities.”

          Can you say the Clintons as in President Bill and former First Lady Hillary?

          So many qualities in both these public figures, but also contradictions!

          Michael Gerson in his column in the Cap Journal on Tuesday said it well in his title: “Clinton stands, standards fall……….”

          The New York Times once wrote this about President Bill: “he gambled the moral, political and historic reputation of the presidency – “

          Gerson says, “But Clinton saved himself through a display of brazen combative defiance against his accusers and the media. There must be some ancient Greek word for this tragically impressive human attribute. It might be translated “shameless fortitude,” or maybe “sleazy grit.”

          The columnist concluded about our former president: “In the end Clinton stood; and standards fell.”

          With that as a backdrop we turn our attention to Hillary Clinton, former First Lady, U.S.Senator, U.S. Secretary of State and now announced candidate for President.

          About candidate Clinton, Michael Gerson wrote: “This attribute of backbone in a dubious cause – in a very different moral context – has been on full display in Hillary Clinton’s presidential launch.”

          There are many questions for Mrs. Clinton, but so far she’s managed these well enough to remain unchallenged for her party’s nomination.

          Some democrats wonder if she can win in a general election suggesting Mrs. Clinton might be “plausible as a president but mediocre as a candidate.”

She first tried the silent treatment, but has recently started to open up; Gerson suggests “Her silence has often been an improvement over her availability.”

          Hillary’s performance thus far are raising doubts about her “honesty, trustworthiness and transparency.”

          Yet, I see her as Gerson does, “tough, disciplined and knowledgeable.”

My paradox is Hillary Clinton may the best prepared person available to lead our country.

          “If Clinton stands; standards fall.”

          I’m Steve Sauder and There’s Something to Think About!

May 20, 2015

Can’t think of anything that would make me happier than having something positive to say about Kansas Governor Sam Brownback, but unfortunately his failure as a leader continues.

Two weeks ago I ask you to respond concerning Brownback’s leadership in Kansas. The results were 531 to 85 saying our governor was NOT an effective leader.

Last week I shared with you my letter to the Governor telling him about the results of the poll on KVOE. The letter and a CD with personal comments from 55 listeners were delivered to the Governor’s office. The Post Office confirmed delivery at 8:38 A.M. on May 13th.

As of Tuesday we have not received any response from the governor or his office. This is disappointing, but not surprising.

And, earlier this week Brownback’s problems increased slightly when it was disclosed he uses a personal e-mail.

The Governor tried to minimize this issue by saying “Most of the time I call people or I just go over to their office.”

Nice try Mr. Governor, but that doesn’t wash. Most of the time doesn’t count – it’s those few times when private stuff is done we need to know about. Open Meetings Laws would seem to have been violated even if there is minimal usage.

This won’t be a big deal for Brownback because he won’t be running for office again – at least in Kansas, but it is another example of his willingness to govern behind closed doors.

We all need to be worrying about “behind closed door deals” as the answer to the current revenue mess in Kansas is sought. You can bet the final plan will come from a private meeting including the governor sprung on us at the eleventh hour.

Speaking of the revenue mess and Topeka it seemed curious to me that in a KVOE interview on Monday Representative Peggy Mast used “they” to describe people making decisions in Topeka. Why not “we”? Representative Mast ran on a platform touting her leadership position in Topeka, so my expectations are she take responsibility for what’s going on, not suggest “they” are not finding a solution.

Finally, if a revenue solution can be found that doesn’t cut into Emporia State’s budget the search for a new president will be made much easier.

There are a couple of things to think about.

I’m Steve Sauder

May 13, 2015

Governor Brownback

241-S Kansas State Capital Building

10th & Jackson

Topeka, KS 66612


Governor Brownback,

My name is Steve Sauder and I am President of Emporia’s Radio Stations, Inc. in Emporia.

I do a weekly commentary called “Something to Think About” on KVOE. Last Wednesday you were my topic.

The story about you and the waitress at bar be que place caught my eye. I was especially interested in your statement about being in public and having people telling you they agreed with you and the opposite.

Seemed to me like a good time to find out what people who listen to our three radio stations in Emporia think of your leadership.

We gave our listeners from seven thirty in the morning until midnight to respond in two ways.

They could go on-line at kvoe.com and answer this question:


The results were as follows:

There were 81 YES responses and 531 NO responses.

This was a fair poll as listeners were limited to one vote per


Listeners were also given the opportunity leave a recorded


We recorded 55 verbal responses. They are enclosed on a

CD. Nine said you are doing a good job and 46 didn’t think so. You can listen to them if you like.

          I’m not sure what you will do with this information, but my hope is you’ll at least consider that the direction you have our state headed isn’t that popular. At least that’s what a majority of folks from Emporia think. 


                                                Steve Sauder

May 6, 2015

  Today is listener participation day on KVOE so you can be involved.

            Governor Sam Brownback is in the news almost daily. Earlier this week he made news because a waitress in Topeka decided to send the Gov a message. She X-ed out the Tip line on his bill for some bar be- que and then wrote in “Tip the Schools.”

            The waitress was upset because her sister is in “special education” and budget cuts have forced good teachers to move on.

            The waitress used Face Book to ask how best to send a message to the Governor. The rest is history.

            Governor Brownback was asked Monday about the incident. He said “I’m out in the public a lot and I get a lot of people saying they agree with me and I get a lot of people saying they don’t.”

            I applaud the Governor for his honest response.

I further think now is a great time for Governor Brownback to hear from Emporia or maybe more correctly what KVOE listeners think of his leadership.

            Here’s the plan. We are providing 2 ways to send a message to the Governor. We will see that he gets the final results.

1.      Go to www.kvoe.com and answer this question:


            Straight forward and to the point. This Poll is about as fair as we can be because it limits each device to one vote.

2.      The second way you can participate is by calling 620-208-6316. That’s 208-6316.

At the tone leave your message for Governor Brownback

concerning his job performance. Your comments will be limited to 1 minute and we urge callers to prepare their thoughts in advance and also to stay away from inflammatory comments.

            The opportunity to express your satisfaction for or against our Governor’s performance will stay open until midnight tonight. Results will be discussed on Thursday morning and be transmitted to the Governor’s office.

            OK listeners it’s your turn to be heard. www.kvoe.com and/or 620-208-6316.