Our History

Over five decades ago, a group of motivated and eager individuals came together around a common goal. They sought to enrich people’s lives through high-quality, non-commercial, educational programming. Institutions like Trinity College and the State of Connecticut supported this goal of reaching out to the community through public broadcasting.

In 1962, the Connecticut Educational Television Station began broadcasting in black and white from the basement of the Trinity College Library in Hartford, Connecticut. With a single videotape machine, 11 staff members launched what soon would become Connecticut Public Television. On October 1, 1962, at 9:40 a.m., CPTV (Connecticut Public Television) aired a discussion of the humanities with critic Clifton Fadiman. It was the station’s first program, first broadcast, and first day as the nation’s 68th station in the National Education Television Network, the predecessor to PBS. In 1978, Connecticut Public Radio joined the network, forming what is today known as Connecticut Public Broadcasting, Inc., parent organization of CPTV and WNPR (Connecticut Public Radio).

In 2004, CPBI made the move to a new broadcast home in Hartford’s historic Asylum Hill neighborhood, a facility with contemporary technology that has enabled CPTV and WNPR to provide programming through a variety of multi-media platforms, in addition to traditional television and radio broadcasting. A satellite office in New Haven also houses WNPR broadcast studios.

Thanks to the generous support of the communities we serve, Connecticut Public Broadcasting, Inc., has evolved from a single television station broadcasting in black and white to a vibrant statewide broadcasting network with four television stations each airing three distinct broadcast channels (CPTV, CPTV4U, CPTV Sports); four radio stations and translator sites across the state extending the reach of WNPR throughout Connecticut as well as Massachusetts and New York; three dynamic web sites (CPBN.org, WNPR.org and CPBN.org); and a print partnership with “Connecticut Magazine,” highlighting CPBN program schedules, membership information and updates on new community and audiences initiatives to over 80,000 subscribers.

The art of storytelling is at the core of all of the Connecticut Public Broadcasting Network’s education initiatives.
Those initiatives have exploded in the last several years, as it has pursued a bold new direction within the turbulent news industry: transforming a significant portion of its corporate headquarters into a journalism educational facility that would make newsrooms around the country jealous. Over the last decade, CPBN’s Learning Lab has delivered over 10,000 hours of instruction to middle, high school, college and adult students.

At CPBI we are steadfast in our goal of giving Connecticut a voice through the creation of multi-media programs and initiatives as well as outreach services. We are committed to providing all sides of an issue without judgment and to create a safe space for exploring hard topics, as well as a platform to explore our shared curiosities. As we embark on a new decade of showcase Connecticut – and all it has to offer its residents and visitors — we remain dedicated to empowering our audience to make our world a more extraordinary place to live.