Inducted Saturday, September 28, 2019
Kathy Coyle graduated from Moorhead High School in 1968. During high school, Coyle was a sprinter for the track team. She was fifth in the nation in the 220-yard dash at the age of 17. Coyle earned her bachelor’s degree in speech communication from the University of Minnesota. Later she enrolled in graduate school and earned her master’s degree and doctorate in communication from North Dakota State University.
Coyle was the first prime time, female television news anchor in the Fargo market on KXJB TV, where she worked from 1976-96. Coyle anchored, hosted telethons, wrote, produced, and was a photographer during her 23-year career in local television.
Graduate school opened Coyle’s eyes to other possibilities, which included marketing the talents of a video production company, followed by academic research and teaching at NDSU before accepting a position with the federal government. She was a community and economic development specialist with USDA Rural Development in Minnesota and North Dakota for 16 years before retiring to the lake in 2017.
Coyle has been involved with volunteer projects that support the homeless, victims of domestic violence, the elderly, people with disabilities, education for children in Haiti, and upholding democracy as a political campaign manager. She also serves on the board of directors for Prairie Public Broadcasting, holds various leadership roles in her NDSU sorority including involvement in the construction of the new Alpha Gamma Delta chapter house, supports church activities in the Detroit Lakes area, and fundraises for construction of the new Becker County Museum featuring history and science. Additionally, Coyle finds delight in the faces of children as she and other volunteers take them snowshoeing in the winter and birding in the spring at Tamarac National Game Refuge, in Becker County, Minn.
Kathy is the daughter of the late Bernard “Sparky” and Georgia Coyle. Her late brother, Brian Coyle, created the first Spuddy mascot in the basement of their family home, so she says she feels a kinship to the mascot and remains a lifelong Spud. She lives near Detroit Lakes, Minn.