Katherine Speirs buys majority interest in KTAO


KTAOKatherine Speirs, local radio personality and originating founder of ASKK Media, announced the acquisition of controlling interest in AAA KTAO-FM “KTAOS 101.9FM” Taos, NM (the world’s first solar-powered radio station), AC KLNN-FM “LUNA 103.7FM” Questa/Taos, and the KTAOS Solar Center and Bar. Speirs gained control on 2/7 when the scheduled buyout was finalized.

In 2010, ASKK, a partnership made up of Kate Black, Shannon Black, Katherine Speirs and Aidan Bain, got West Waves Inc. and its KLNN-FM Questa NM for $375K. KTAO went for $675K in the deal as well.

“I’m so proud of all we’ve accomplished together over the past few years,” says Speirs. “We’ve had wild ride but change is inevitable and in business ownership it’s no exception. I am thrilled to have a greater share of these companies that I love, and to use my passion for the music, our community and entertainment industries to continue to take KTAOS to higher and higher levels.”

Under the new direction provided by Speirs, a nine-year resident of Taos whose radio career began at KBCO Boulder, the companies will “retain the legacy set forth by previous owner, Brad Hockmeyer, by being involved in its local and regional communities. The station formats will remain the same and no substantial changes to the operations or structure of the companies are anticipated in the near future.”

As part of an employee-owned business, Speirs’ will be named President and will remain at KTAOS as the Production and Music Director working with PD and Morning Show Host, Paddy Mac, on music selection and general sound of the stations.

Launched as KXRT in 1975, Hockmeyer purchased the station’s license to create KTAOS in 1986. Becoming the world’s first solar-powered radio station in 1991, Hockmeyer continued the eco-friendly theme and moved KTAOS into The KTAOS Solar Center in 2004. Currently KTAOS has a staff of 10 permanent employment positions. KTAOS has cited positive and strong trends in advertising sales revenues and garnered 14 consecutive positive growth quarters for the restaurant and multipurpose venue.