(January 26, 2018) Two years ago, David Kahn accepted a job in minor league baseball that did not include play-by-play. For an aspiring broadcaster, it was an interesting choice that has paid off. An STAA member, Kahn is the new Director of Broadcasting and Media Relations for the West Virginia Power (Pirates Class-A).
In 2016, Kahn was weighing an unpaid play-by-play opportunity with a rookie league team against a media relations internship with the Triple-A New Orleans Zephyrs (now Baby Cakes) in the city where he was already living. He chose the latter.
“The biggest factor in that decision was that I knew [Zephyrs broadcaster] Tim Grubbs very well,” says Kahn. “Despite not having any guaranteed play-by-play opportunities, I trusted Tim would have my best interests at hand during my internship.”
Though diligent work, Kahn parlayed the non-broadcasting internship into much more.
“Not only did I receive an incredible learning experience while in New Orleans, but my hard work in media relations and multimedia impressed their General Manager, Cookie Rojas. He and Tim both agreed that I should be rewarded with some play-by-play chances,” says Kahn.
One day in late July, about an hour before batting practice, Grubbs told Kahn he was going on the air for the first time. He would receive one inning. “That was the start of my baseball broadcasting career, and it simply escalated from there,” Kahn smiles.
Kahn parlayed his New Orleans experience into a Broadcasting/Media Relations Assistant position last season with the Winston-Salem Dash. When news broke that longtime Dash broadcaster Adam Marco was leaving for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, Kahn tapped into his well-nurtured network of minor league baseball contacts.
“I reached out to a connection of mine that knew Adam well to find out more about the Power’s hiring process,” Kahn explains. “Adam and I got in touch and were able to talk at the Winter Meetings about the Power opening. I had applied for Adam’s #2 position the year before, so he was familiar with who I was on and off the air.”
After discussing the job with Marco, Kahn’s interest in the position grew. “I was able to speak to two Power staff members who were at the Meetings for an initial interview, which, coupled with a recommendation from Adam, led to a final round interview. 24 hours after that, I was hired.”
Relationship building has long been a priority for Kahn.
“I was able to garner recommendations from several influential people in the industry that certainly helped when it came down to the final decision [for West Virginia]. A major focus of mine during my first few years in this business was to get to know as many people as I could, whether they were fellow broadcasters in the league I was working in or just friends of friends. I continue to do that to this day, and because I’ve been able to build so many real and true relationships, my network was a great resource as I took the next big step in my career path.
(Visit David’s website).