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A TV guru with a knack for public television programming, production

A TV guru with a knack for public television programming, production

GROTON — Bob Colman has been working with The Groton Channel for over 13 years, and has more than 25 years experience in the film and television industry. Graduating with his master’s degree in film production from Boston University, Colman has worked on a variety of productions, including independent films, big budget films and freelancing on his own. After starting out in public access television post graduation, Colman has always found himself intrigued by what local stations have to offer. He is now working as the program director for The Groton Channel.

Q: When did you first become interested in television?

A: After I graduated college, my grandmother let me know about a free workshop at the access center in Needham so I took that and that what started it all. I was just a volunteer there after the workshop, contributing to their news program and I really just enjoyed the creativity and the abilities I took away from getting able to piece together a music video or a news story.

Q: What was your first television job?

A: My first paid job was in the Cayman Islands working for a station and production company called Cayman Islands Television. It came from my volunteering at Needham — the woman who was the news producer then went down there to advise them on a start-up news organization and she connected me with them. It was long hours and a little tough. I was there for two weeks before I even saw the beach.

Q: How did you transition from the Cayman Islands and end up in Groton?

A: I found out about an opportunity back in Needham again so I went back there as full time staff as their public affairs producer and then a year after that a position in Groton opened up here and I’ve been with Groton for the past 13 years.

Q: What is your favorite aspect of television?

A: It’s magic. You are creating a reality. There’s fun in putting something together for the purpose of entertaining or informing.

Q: Why did you decide to ultimately stay in public access?

A: Everyone in it is genuine and wants to be apart of the community. The tools are improving too so you can accomplish a lot of good things with it and i’ve just loved it from the start.

Q: Would you ever want to go to a bigger market?

A: I would be perfectly happy staying in public television. I don’t have any plans to leave anytime soon.

Q: If you had to pick something about public television that you could change what would that be?

A: The public’s awareness and involvement. It happens all the time when people come in here and they say “wow this is great.” There’s a lot of people that want to do it but don’t have enough time so I’d love to be able to just give people all the time that they need to be more involved, but that’s not realistic.

Q: What would you say is the importance of the work that goes on at The Groton Channel?

A: It’s the only place where the public can be on television and create whatever they want and make their show which is a precious thing that people who do take advantage of this opportunity benefit from. To some extent some people can do that online but we are here to provide the skills so they can do it better and communicate better.

Q: How would someone go about getting involved?

A: If you want to produce something just take one of our workshops. We offer them throughout the year. If that isn’t convenient give us a call and come talk to us and we can figure out how to get you involved.

Q: How do you feel now since having moved up from just a volunteer to a program director and having all these responsibilities?

A: It’s something I’ve always liked doing so having the ability to guide the station more is great. This is a great place to be.