Sam Shad expands political show’s reach |

Sam Shad expands political show’s reach

John Seelmeyer

Sam Shad launched “Nevada Newsmakers” as a labor of love.

He thinks, however, that expansion of the television program into the Las Vegas market last week strongly improves his chances of making a dollar at it, too.

“Nevada Newsmakers” last week began airing on a cable television channel in Las Vegas and on April 24 will begin airing on KVBC-TV in Las Vegas as well.

The broadcast channel is owned by Sunbelt Communications, which also owns KRNV, the NBC affiliate that airs “Nevada Newsmakers” in Reno on Channel 4.

Shad’s company, Sam Shad Productions, purchases air time from Sunbelt Communications, produces the show and sells advertising.

Expansion into Las Vegas, Shad said, allows him to deliver both of Nevada’s major media markets to advertisers.

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And that’s going to be critically important as politics and political advertising heats up in Nevada.

This year’s elections, Shad notes, will be followed by a legislative session in 2005 that promises to be filled with controversy.

Shad himself handles the advertising sales.

He co-hosts the talk show with Ande Engleman, former executive director of the Nevada Press Association.

“Nevada Newsmakers” airs in a 30- minute spot at 12:30 p.m.

Monday through Thursday, a spot that puts it in competition with soap operas and other traditional daytime fare.

Ratings have been strong.

“For the type of show it is, the ratings have been terrific,” says Ralph Toddre, president and chief operating officer of Sunbelt Communications.

“Sam Shad has really put his whole life into this show and made it what it is.”

Part of the show’s success arises because it’s a business venture, Shad said.

“The format is exciting, not your typical dry public-affairs show,” he said.

“If you’re planning on taking a nap, don’t turn it on.”

Advertiser support, he said, has been growing since the program was launched in February 2003.

“At this point, it’s a financial success if a financial success means you’re not broke,” he quipped.

Along with its airings on Channel 4 in Reno and the new Las Vegas showings, “Nevada Newsmakers” is rebroadcast on Charter Cable in Reno, Sparks, Carson City and Douglas County and replayed on radio station KOH on Sunday mornings.