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Making a Difference: Investing in Education

Luther Deaton, chairman, president and CEO of Central Bank, has been a longtime supporter of KET.  

The reason, he says, is simple—because of all the work KET does to support education in Kentucky.  

“Education truly is the key to everything in life,” Deaton said. “And KET does such a great job of supporting education in the Commonwealth. Just think of how many kids and how many people KET has reached throughout this state.” 

Deaton said he first learned to appreciate education’s worth as a young boy in Breathitt County, growing up with his parents and three sisters in a small home that had no telephone, television, or even running water.  

A photo portrait of Luther Deaton smiling in a white shirt and pink-and-blue-striped tie.

KET does such a great job of supporting education in the Commonwealth. Just think of how many kids and how many people KET has reached throughout this state.

“But you know what? We didn’t worry about any of that because we had a lot of love in our house,” Deaton said. “And we never felt like we were left wanting because my parents believed in us, and they believed in the power of education.”  

KET, he said, likewise shares that same passion for education in the Commonwealth.  

KET’s children’s programs play an important role in early childhood education, he said. Kids enjoy watching television and being entertained by their favorite PBS KIDS characters, but they’re also learning while they watch — whether it’s their letters or numbers or how to work together as a productive member of a larger community.  

“It’s very educational because everything is kept on a level that kids can understand it,” Deaton said. 

Even in adulthood, KET continues to help Kentuckians reach their education and career goals, Deaton added. Resources such as FastForward, which prepares people for their GED® credential, and the InDemand video series, which showcase career paths in a variety of the Kentucky’s fastest growing industries, offer clear and trusted instruction — and even a little encouragement — for those thinking about continuing their education or advancing their careers. 

“KET opens so many different avenues to education, making it available to those who need it, regardless of where they may be at in their lives,” Deaton said. “I don’t think you can fully measure the impact that KET has had on our state.”  

And KET’s public affairs programs, such as Kentucky Tonight and Comment on Kentucky, spearhead important statewide conversations on the issues of the day. Hosts Renee Shaw and Bill Bryant come well-prepared, posing insightful questions that get to the heart of the issues without playing to one side or the other of the political aisle, Deaton said.  

Additionally, KET’s forums on statewide issues — such as recent programs examining violent crime in Louisville, the future of Kentucky’s workforce, and the state’s maternal health services – bring in knowledgeable guests who are on the front lines of the topics discussed, he added.  

“That’s what makes those programs so good,” Deaton added. “There’s always an open and honest discussion, where people can say what they really think. And the focus is always ‘How can we make Kentucky a better place to live?’”