Kenn Barry

That Door Marked Private

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Minnesota Broadcasting Hall of Fame

Kenn Barry

Inducted 2002

Television pioneer Kenn Barry helped create, direct, and produce the country's first nightly news telecast.

While a student at the University of Minnesota and while serving in the US Army during World War II, he worked as an actor, announcer, and producer at KSTP Minneapolis/Saint Paul. After the war he served as program director of University radio station KUOM, and then at an Iowa radio station before returning to the Twin Cities in 1948 as the first production manager of KSTP TV Minneapolis/Saint Paul. He directed and produced nearly all of the station's live programs, and pioneered the craft of television news. The show he helped create for KSTP TV in 1949 was the nation's first regularly scheduled nightly 10:00 p.m. newscast. He also created, directed, and produced the Twin Cities' first weekly film documentary, "That Door Marked Private," and helped oversee the transition to color television. He became KSTP TV's director of public relations and special projects in 1975 and Hubbard Broadcasting's director of conference planning in 1982.

He retired in 1986, but remained active, serving on the boards of many community and cultural organizations.

Kenn passed away, at the age of 81, on August 29, 2002.