KSUT studios 1976


When KSUT signed on for the first time on June 14, 1976, it was one of only eight stations in the country airing tribal programming.

The station came to life as a communications service for Southern Ute tribal members. Originally, the signal covered Ignacio and part of the Pine River Valley. Programming was mostly in the Ute language and included cultural affairs, community news, personal messages, traditional Native American music, and rock and popular music.

Growing demand for public radio in the Four Corners presented KSUT with an opportunity. In 1984 the station’s board of directors voted to expand the station’s broadcast appeal and area. It became an affiliate of both National Public Radio and American Public Radio and added a variety of diverse music programming to the lineup.

While the station’s success as a regional public radio service was apparent, it still needed to serve its original mission as a tribal radio service.

In June 1998, KSUT returned to its roots by splitting into two signals – Southern Ute Tribal Radio and Four Corners Public Radio. Both operate under the general name “KSUT.”

Today, the tribal radio signal is known simply as Tribal Radio. It offers Native American programming on weekdays and simulcasts Four Corners Public Radio on the weekend.

Programming includes culture, news, Native American and popular music, and live broadcasts of tribal meetings, Ignacio High School sports, and other events. Tribal Radio is an affiliate of Native Voice 1.

To this day, KSUT Tribal Radio continues to fulfill this mission and more, expanding the terrestrial signal to reach over 30,000 listeners and Native communities living outside the Southern Ute reservation including the Navajo and Jicarilla Nations of Northern New Mexico, as well as the Ute Mountain Ute Tribe of Southwest Colorado.

KSUT Tribal Radio was one of the first Native radio stations to broadcast via internet streaming, providing a connection to home for Tribal members living outside the area and exposure to Southern Ute cultural programming to anyone in the world. With the development of the Tribal Media Center, KSUT will continue to be an innovator and leader in Native broadcasting, broadening its circle of influence throughout Native America.

Tribal Radio is heard on the following frequencies:

  • 91.3 FM in Ignacio, Southern Ute, and Jicarilla Apache tribal lands
  • 100.9 FM in Towaoc, Ute Mountain Ute and Navajo tribal lands
  • 89.7 FM in Farmington and northwest New Mexico.

Both Tribal Radio and Four Corners Public Radio broadcast from studios in Ignacio, Colorado.

KSUT is an independent, non-profit public media organization governed by a board of directors. It is not owned or operated by any tribe.

Sheila Naneto and Eddie Box, Jr. in the new KSUT studio


More about Tribal Radio

KSUT Herald article mid 70s