Bobby Reed

I grew up in Sacramento watching channel six. Now, my family is a frequent viewer of KVIE’s PBS KIDS shows and user of the PBS KIDS app and educational games. Our boys, ages two and five, never seem to get enough Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood or Curious George. It can be a real battle to pull them away from their favorite characters and shows when taking them to preschool in the morning. It blows my mind that my two-year-old can navigate the PBS KIDS app better than I can and knows how to get to his favorite shows.

We have books and iPad games all related to PBS characters and my sons know the alphabet thanks to Curious George. With all the benefits our family receives from PBS, I wanted to take advantage of the opportunity to give back. Yet, I always found myself lacking the time or motivation to go online to KVIE and donate. But then we learned about KVIE Passport, further encouraging us to become members. I was delighted to support KVIE as a sustaining member and get access to KVIE Passport for my family because it provided even more convenient access to educational programs for my children and historical shows for my wife and myself.

After graduating from MIT, I became the CEO of local digital agency Capitol Tech Solutions and we proudly support KVIE with our digital marketing services, giving me another wonderful opportunity to get involved and support public media.

Supporting KVIE gave our company the ability to not only be more involved in the local community, but also provided us the chance to give back to our region. Within the first month of working with KVIE, there were other interesting facts that I learned as well:

  1. KVIE has the largest TV production studio in Northern California.
  2. KVIE produces a multitude of series that are viewed on other PBS stations throughout the state, including Inside California Education and Rob on the Road.
  3. KVIE Passport is a great option that I had never previously heard of before. For less than a cup of any high-end coffee each month, I can stream quality PBS content to my Roku at home.
  4. Today’s kids consume PBS shows on mobile devices more than any other medium.

As I look at myself and other millennial parents, I realize that very few of us have the time or resources to donate to our local PBS station. There are plenty of fundraising drives offering premiums like DVDs for music, cooking, and entertainment programs, but KVIE gives us a better incentive – a few minutes of freedom in the evening to clean or catch up on finances while the kids tune in to their favorite shows.

That’s why KVIE Passport has so much value to my generation and other millennial parents. For just $5 a month, half the cost of my Netflix subscription, I can get access to quality KVIE and PBS shows. While there are so many shows, some that I’ve never heard of, my kids have grown to love many of them; particularly, NOVA. Now, instead of watching the kid’s cartoons, my five-year-old loves to sit and watch NOVA with me. It leads to endless questions, “How did the dinosaurs die?” “Can we go visit an asteroid?” and “Where did all of the water on earth come from?” These are shows we have begun to watch as a family and they peak his curiosity, encouraging him to go explore science. In the coming weeks, we’re planning on going to the Placerville Community Observatory to continue to explore space. And when we visit the Discovery Science Museum, he yells, “Just like I learned on NOVA!” As a self-proclaimed science nerd and MIT graduate, I couldn’t be more excited. Now, weekly movie night is starting to turn into a family affair that we can all enjoy. With KVIE Passport, we have access to many old episodes, so I can browse and find shows that both he and I have an interest in. And once all the questions are done and we finally get the kids down to sleep, I can sit back and relax while my wife and I catch up on our favorite shows Austin City Limits or Victoria.

As our kids grow and we get more involved in neighborhood activities, we learn more about how our millennial peers want to raise their children. Everyone lives a busy life with soccer, t-ball, school, picking up kids, all on top of full-time jobs. Generally, we all think our kids get too much screen time between phones, tablets, TVs, and on-demand content. However, it’s more about the type of content that our children are viewing and digesting during their screen time – which is why we’re so keen on KVIE’s Passport benefit.

Ultimately, our generation wants to give back to ethical organizations who care about their audience and the type of content they deliver. We want to know that the companies we support can make a significant impact in the lives of others, especially our children. With our KVIE membership, we know our money is going to our community and the screen time our kids are getting is going towards educational programming that peaks their curiosity. I strongly encourage my millennial peers to support KVIE and make a difference today!


Bobby Reed

CEO – Capitol Tech Solutions

Guest post: Bobby Reed, CEO of Capitol Tech Solutions