(Joplin, MO) – The KGCS television station at Missouri Southern State University (MSSU) is under new leadership, but the new station manager and creative services director are by no means strangers to MSSU.
Bobbie Pottoroff joined the station on February 1 as the new station manager while Maddy West took over as creative services director in October 2020. Both are graduates of MSSU who got their start at KGCS, which has served the Joplin area for more than 35 years.
Pottoroff graduated in 1991 with a degree in communications and an emphasis in broadcast. Judy Stiles, the longtime KGCS manager who recently retired after more than three decades at the station, was one of her instructors.
“Those are giant shoes to fill,” said Pottoroff. “I only hope I can continue her legacy of professionalism and community involvement.”
After graduating high school, she began volunteering at Joplin’s KSNF-TV station while honing her skills at KGCS. She later worked for a Wichita television station before coming back to the area to serve as assistant news director and assignment editor for KOAM-TV for more than a decade.
“I’ve wanted to come back and work at Southern ever since I graduated,” said Pottoroff. “It’s a really great environment. We have a great feeder market for television students where they can learn and go work for our local stations. It’s a lifelong dream to work for the school that helped make me who I am.”
Maddy West graduated from MSSU in 2019 with degrees in mass communication and public relations, and she was heavily involved with operations at KGCS as a student.
“After I graduated, I came back here when we received the video board for the football stadium. I directed coverage and graphics that were featured during games,” she said. “After that, I did concert photography for Connect2Culture’s series of invited artists, and on the side I have a videography business with my sister and our friends.”
West said she worked closely with former creative services director Bill Hunt, who retired last year after nearly 20 years in the role. It’s a position that involves working closely with local stations, businesses, and organizations to create PSAs; scheduling programming; and working with students on creating their own programming.
“This job is probably what I had in my head to do, but I never thought I’d get here so soon,” said West. “At this point, this is probably my dream job.”
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Missouri Southern State University