Russel Shaffer, with his wife Ann, launched Boulder radio station KBOL-AM in 1947 and were involved with it for the 45 years until its sale in 1992.
KBOL, Colorado Station of the Year in 1988, was known as a pioneer in sports broadcasting, community programming and listener participation shows. Shaffer also launched KBVL-FM in 1972, operating that station until 1986.
His goal, as reported by the Daily Camera in 1953, was “to operate a radio station that is of genuine service to the community.”
In 1974, Shaffer was named Colorado Broadcaster of the Year. He founded The Public Access Channel and the Shamrock Broadcasting and Buffalo Sports networks. He provided free air time to high school broadcasting clubs, which he helped organize. In addition, he was co-founder, president and a director of the Colorado Radio Broadcasters Association, which eventually represented more than 300 radio stations.
As a businessman, Shaffer helped bring IBM, Crossroads Mall and the National Bureau of Standards to Boulder. As a civic leader, he served as president of the Boulder Chamber of Commerce and the Lyons Club, was a long-time director for the Boulder Community Hospital and participated in numerous Boulder study committees.