PBS39 Spotlight: Steve Kauffman
Give us a little background: Where were you before coming to PBS39?
Before PBS39, I worked at a real estate marketing company in Allentown known as HomeSpot Media, Inc. making room-to-room video home tours. That's where I learned and practiced how to fly a DJI drone.
How and when did you come to PBS39?
I had done freelance work with Dr. Teri Haddad for a couple years before my position was available in August 2015. Once I heard of its availability, I immediately jumped on the opportunity.
What do you love most about working at PBS39?
The people I work with make what I already love doing even more enjoyable. I've never felt out of place or stagnant here, and every day is different. I get to experience things like filming behind the scenes of an independent movie, interviewing athletes, or telling stories about cancer research that saved someone's life. PBS39 continues to enhance my skill sets. Beyond all of that, working hands-on in our studios, whether it's on lighting or camera operation, is always fun.
Describe your day-to-day role at PBS39 and why it is important to the station?
I don't have a particular “day-to-day,” which I'm more than thrilled about. My role at the station includes filming on-location stories; editing FOCUS packages, underwriting spots, and station promos; studio productions; studio maintenance and upkeep; satellite uplinks; working with production clients (such as Reeb Millwork); and, most importantly, being a helping hand whenever it is needed. I'm like a Swiss army knife; there's not much around here I can't help with, and I rarely shy away from learning something new.
Why do you think it is important to support the mission of public media?
Our mission is important, because we are a constant stream of information that helps educate future generations, and we enhance the spotlight on issues in our community to make a difference, no matter what city or town we call home.
This past summer, you were nominated for a 2016 Mid-Atlantic Emmy for your work on Cosmo's World III: Trees, how does it feel to receive this kind of recognition for your part in this production?
I was particularly excited about this recognition, because it involved my drone work on an already outstanding, award-winning series. I remember the first time anything I created actually aired on TV, and the nomination was similar to that experience. I felt like I was accomplishing what I had always hoped I would when I was younger. It's a surreal feeling, knowing I'm succeeding at a craft that I live for.
What do you hope the future holds for you at PBS39?
I have no idea, but that's what I like – just enjoying the ride.
Anything else you’d like to add?
Let’s Go Flyers!