April 9, 2012 | Vol. 31, No. 7
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Current FOR PEOPLE IN PUBLIC MEDIA
PBS proposes 2% dues hike, extends common carriage Antiabortionists get day in court in dispute with Seattle’s KUOW Euro-guru Rick Steves opening minds during pledge tour, too
Jacksonville to host second centralcast facility for pubTV By Dru Sefton
he pull of economic strains and push of technical advancements continue to spark collaborations among stations, with seven pubTV outlets signing onto a CPB-backed joint master-control project in Florida and two Oregon stations preparing to link via fiber lines and share a single schedule. The CPB Board on March 27 unanimously approved a $7 million grant for a centralcasting facility that will serve six stations in Florida and one in Georgia. The Jacksonville Digital Convergence Alliance LLC will run one master control with customized programming streams for WJCT in Jacksonville; WFSU, Tallahassee; WPBT, Miami; WBCC/ WUCF, Orlando; Tampa stations WUSF and WEDU; and WPBA, Atlanta. Depending on how many additional stations sign on, the participating pubcasters will save as much as $20 million over 10 years, according to CPB’s estimates. Cost savings have become imperative, as CPB’s supplementary appropriation for digital projects is nearly depleted. The federal aid was slashed from $36 million to $6 million in 2011, and its prospects for growing in the future are dim. “The handwriting on the wall couldn’t be clearer,” said WJCT President Michael Boylan. Congress eliminated the Public Telecommunications Facilities Program that aided pubcasters’ technical upgrades and other equipment purchases, and CPB’s capacity to support master-control infrastructure “is all but gone,” he said. Many states that
CPB will give guidelines to journalism hubs Entering third year, regional centers struggle with control, long-term funding
By Mike Janssen
PB will continue funding six regional journalism hubs for another year but plans to require participating pubcasters to adopt a shared set of best practices. The guidelines will be designed to address challenges that the seven Local Journalism Centers have encountered during their two years of growth, such as negotiating editorial control and finding paths toward financial sustainability. Launched in 2010 with $10.5 million in CPB funding, the LJCs brought public broadcasters together in regional collaborations to report on focused areas of coverage, such as agriculture, border issues and health care. With the hubs entering their third year of operation, CPB hired a consultant to review which LJCs have succeeded, which have struggled and
which factors have made the difference. At a meeting of the CPB Board March 26, interactive-media consultant Rusty Coats reported that four LJCs have established a clear voice and focus throughout their editorial products, while the rest have faced greater challenges. One of the struggling LJCs is dropping out — Changing Gears, a Midwestern center covering economic transition in the
Rust Belt. Its partner stations have decided to keep collaborating but without CPB support. The most successful LJCs have clearly defined their coverage areas and presented a compelling master narrative, Coats said. He cited in particular Fronteras, which covers the U.S. border with Mexico, and Harvest Public Media, with a focus on agriculContinued on page 13
Harvest Public Media’s reporters, including Jessica Naudziunas, collaborate to cover agricultural issues from the nation’s heartland. (Photo courtesy of Harvest.)
Continued on page 9
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Did Kramer overreach in Oregon? Licensee sees conflict in JPR chief’s dual roles
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efferson Public Radio’s Ron Kramer is fighting to keep his job as executive director of the public radio service he’s built over nearly four decades across a sparsely populated region of southern Oregon. Citing a conflict of interest between Kramer’s role as station chief and his oversight of the separate nonprofit Jefferson Public Radio Foundation, license holder Southern Oregon University (SOU) terminated his annual contract as JPR executive director. The dismissal, announced on March 25, is effective June 30. Kramer, who is contesting the decision, can continue to manage the foundation because the university has no control over it. The pubradio veteran insists that his dual
roles managing both JPR and its sister nonprofit are both appropriate and costefficient. “JPR can only work if both the foundation and the university are rowing in the same direction,” said Kramer. “The same person has to be director of both. There’s not enough money to fund a duplicative administrative structure.” Kramer Under the university’s plan, Kramer will lose most of his $94,728 salary — $12,500 of which is paid by the foundation, according to tax filings. Kramer has held the dual roles for 15 years with the university’s blessing, until now. He is furious, and not planning on going anywhere.
JPR and the foundation had combined assets of more than $9 million as of June 23, 2010, according to a report by university auditors who examined the financial relationship between the organizations last year. The total revenue stream for both entities in 2010 was $4.2 million. The report, released last September, warned SOU that JPRF’s liabilities exceeded the debt-burden ratio allowed for higher-ed institutions, and that its ambitions to develop new properties would strain the local fundraising pool that the university taps for its own development needs. It also called on SOU to “eliminate the conflict of interest that exists with the JPR Executive
Output 2 People 6 Jobs 10 Thinking Calendar Current.org/calendar Jobs 12 14People 8 Online at Current.org
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2 | April 9, 2012 | Current
THiS iS noT your FATHEr’S PlEDgE EvEnT. But it is about your parents.
The American History Guys Ed Ayers, left, Brian Balogh and Peter Onuf bring historical perspectives of three different centuries to weekly discussions of the week’s news. (Photo: Tom Coghill.)
• There are 75 million American adult caregivers • 85% of eldercare is done by family members • The typical American adult will care for an adult family member for 10 – 15 years BackStory with the American History Guys is fine-tuning its format and scaling up for weekly public radio broadcasts. Produced as a series of monthly specials since 2008, the show will relaunch in May with new segments exploring historical themes suggested by the week’s news events. With three historian hosts billed as “the American History Guys,” BackStory makes a nod towards the wisecracking Tom and Ray Magliozzi of Car Talk, known to public radio listeners as “the car guys,” and there’s certainly joviality to their banter with each other and listeners who call in. But BackStory takes its history seriously. Andrew Wyndham, executive producer and media director for the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities, prefers an analogy made by a station program director who said BackStory could “do for history what Carl Sagan did for science.” Each of the show’s hosts brings special expertise to the subject: Peter Onuf, a professor at the University of Virginia, specializes in 18th-century American history, and Brian Balogh, also of U-Va., is an expert on the 20th century. Ed Ayers, a history professor and president of the University of Richmond, covers the gap between them, 19th-century America.
ArE you rEADy? Nationally recognized speaker, author and eldercare expert, Barbara McVicker hosts Stuck in the Middle: Caring for Mom and Dad – A lively, life-changing and solution-filled guide to eldercare.
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BackStory’s editorial philosophy, as Balogh described it in the series’ first program, is to “rip a topic from the headlines and follow its trail back in time.” A case in point is “Born in the USA,” an episode produced to demonstrate the approach for the weekly broadcast, which explores the evolution of American names from John and Mary to Aidan and Kay-Den, birthing technologies throughout the centuries, historic interpretations of the beginning of personhood, and the concept of birthright citizenship. In ramping up to produce weekly episodes, BackStory has hired four new associate producers and tapped veteran talk-show producers Graham Griffith (formerly of WNYC’s The Takeaway and WBUR’s On Point) and Kerry Donahue (also a former top producer at WNYC and The Takeaway, now with Marketplace) as consultants. Among the new elements under consideration to bring more timeliness to the show are a historians’ roundtable on the week’s news events, a segment looking at historical objects that are especially relevant to show topics (forceps or hoodies, for example) and the linguistic history of a newsworthy word or phrase. Producers hope that the changes will enhance the show’s appeal to their target audience of non-history buffs. “Every week you can get that really broad arc of things and ideas and meanings that have changed over a long period of time,” said Tony Field, producer. Field joined BackStory for its launch in 2008 and also worked at New York’s WNYC, where he produced On the Media. During its four-year run as a series of specials, BackStory has been broadcast by 139 public radio stations in 39 states and Washington, D.C. Wyndham aims to secure weekly timeslots on 30 to 50 stations by the end of the year. BackStory also has an audience of ondemand listeners. Its free podcast, offered via Apple’s iTunes store, has been downloaded more than 1.3 million times. The show’s expansion was backed in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities. — Theodore Fischer
PRI adapts Studio 360 segment for iPad book For its foray into e-book publishing, Public Radio International chose “Teacher Redesign,” in which a New York design firm created a branding campaign on behalf of the nation’s educators, and adapted it for Apple’s iPad. The iBook features 32 pages of content adapted from the Studio 360 episode, produced as part of its ongoing series on graphic design and cultural symbolism. With its strong visual elements, the program was natContinued on page 8
4 | April 9, 2012 | Current
NPR deal will help to measure, and monetize, web streaming By Mike Janssen
n agreement between NPR and Triton Digital, a provider of digital services to radio stations, will give NPR stations a new option for measuring and monetizing online audiences while also allowing the network to access analytics and metrics for all participating stations. The master agreement between NPR and Triton, announced March 27, provides two services to stations: Webmetrics, which measures listening to live streams, and Ad Injector, a system that replaces on-air underwriting credits with online sponsorship credits. “They’re independent products, but the idea is that they can work hand in hand,” says Bob Kempf, v.p. of NPR Digital Services. By more thoroughly measuring online listening, stations expect to raise more revenue through selling local sponsorships of their online streams. Measurement of listening to web streams is uneven throughout the system, Kempf says. Some stations already use Triton, others measure pageviews of the web pages where links to their streams reside and still others aren’t measuring at all. “More stations have not been measuring consistently than those that have been,” he says. As a result, public radio is missing opportunities for online sponsorship sales.
National Public Media, which sells underwriting for NPR and PBS, estimates that stations are already streaming about $12 million worth of credits over their Web streams. “There’s an opportunity there that we’re not ready for, and we want to put the infrastructure in place for that,” Kempf says. Stations can use Ad Injector to stream sponsorship credits sold specifically for online play or, using Webmetrics, can aggregate on-air and online listening data and sell the same airtime to sponsors at a higher value. “This may be easier for some stations, and there’s also an open question of which of these two models may win the day in the marketplace,” wrote Bryan Moffett, v.p. of digital strategy/ad operations for National Public Media, in an email. Under the master agreement with Triton, stations will pay at a lower rate for streaming services than what they could negotiate individually with the vendor. Each station will have a login and access to their listening data via a web-based interface. Meanwhile, NPR Digital Services will be able to observe all the data, comparing statistics and looking for overall trends. Triton can also break down listening by platform, such as web, iPhone, Android and other devices. Four stations are now piloting the Ad Injector feature, which requires on-air credits to be marked with metadata so that Ad Injector can identify and replace them. n
PBS proposes 2% dues increase, okays common-carriage extension PBS is seeking a 2 percent increase in membership fees in its draft budget for fiscal 2013. Although still subject to review by station execs and formal approval by the PBS Board, the proposed dues hike would be the first since fiscal 2009. “A key focus of this budget is the performance of critical maintenance on PBS’s technology infrastructure that is necessary to maintain reliable distribution of content to stations,” PBS spokesperson Jan McNamara told Current in a statement. “The majority of station dues [are] dedicated to content. This will continue to be the case in the coming fiscal year. In order to retain the system’s investment in content, key infrastructure issues must be addressed in FY13.” The PBS Board approved management’s proposed budget on March 30, a vote that essentially begins the annual debate among pubTV stations over PBS spending for next year. Although the 2013 budget has not yet been released, station assessments comprised 63 percent of PBS’s $287 million total revenue budget in fiscal 2012, or $181 million, according to a budget proposal circulated last spring. The PBS Board also voted unanimously to amend the network’s common-carriage policy, aligning it with the ongoing revamp of its primetime schedule. The new policy allows network programmers to designate up to three hours of primetime programs per night for common carriage. The cap had previously been set at two hours. The change does not affect the total number of common-carriage hours PBS can designate over the season, or station flexibility to preempt common-carriage programming.
CPB grant to NPR backs expanding foreign coverage CPB has awarded a $500,000 grant to NPR to support the network’s international news coverage. The grant, announced at a March 26 awards dinner honoring NPR correspondent Lourdes Garcia-Navarro, will support salaries and travel costs for reporters and producers in Jerusalem, Cairo, Beirut, Shanghai and Beijing. Last year NPR spent more than it had anticipated covering the Arab uprisings and the earthquake and nuclear disaster in Japan. As NPR’s foreign desk steps up its reporting from the Middle East, Asia and Africa, reporters are putting themselves “on the front line of historic news events,” said CPB Chair Bruce Ramer, who announced the grant. “This will help NPR stay on the story as long as it takes.” “This is going to be so important for our work,” said NPR President Gary Knell. “There’s nothing more important to me and my colleagues than the foreign reporting work that we do.” Garcia-Navarro, recipient of CPB’s 2011 Edward R. Murrow Award honoring outstanding contributions to public radio, described the grant as “a real gift to those of us who work in the field, and it has actual, practical implications.” “Never has covering the world been more dangerous and more vital,” she said. The grant came out of CPB’s Radio Program Fund.
March brings major gifts for two pubTV shows
Doc Martin V - (8x46) base Jazz Icons - (1x60) pledge; (1x90) pledge event
Trains Around North America - (2x60) pledge; (1x180) pledge event Diana Ross: For One and For All (1x90) pledge; (1x120) pledge event
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Philanthropists in California and New York contributed separate gifts of $1 million to two public TV shows last month. With her six-figure contribution to the Masterpiece Trust, Darlene Shiley of San Diego made the largest gift to date to the fund, established in January 2011. Shiley, one of the first donors to the trust, made a gift of $250,000 last year. Her $1 million contribution was made on behalf of her and her late husband Donald and will be split with KPBS in San Diego. The Masterpiece Trust allows major donors to directly support the Masterpiece strand of British drama programs on PBS while designating part of the gift to their local station. New York philanthropist Henry van Ameringen has been a longtime supporter of In The Life, the public TV newsmagazine focusing on gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender issues. His $1 million gift celebrates the show’s 20th anniversary on the air, and goes to In The Life Media, the production company behind the show. When In The Life began airing in 1992, it was a revelation, van Ameringen recalled in a March 23 column published by the Huffington Post. “The simple fact that there was a television program, airing on public television stations around the country, that represented LGBT people in such a genuine and accurate manner was stunning, and even more so that it had been produced by a tiny staff on a threadbare budget,” he wrote. ”[I]n the past 20 years, the stories that have been told have had a tremendous impact, creating the social change and momentum we now see toward full equality,” he wrote.
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For the past 7 years, APT has delivered approximately half of the top rated titles seen on public television.* *Data provided by Nielsen Media Research, processed by TRAC Media Services. Primary stations, metered markets. October 2010-2011.
n If Oregon Public Broadcasting’s GOP primary debate would have aired as scheduled for March 19, it would have been the first presidential debate carried live in primetime by PBS. Our March 26 story overstated the precedent. Also, due to incorrect information provided by OPB, a photo caption adjacent to the story misspelled the name of production manager Michaela Santen. n Marketplace reporter Mitchell Hartman was appointed lead reporter on the show’s new Wealth and Poverty Desk on a temporary basis (Current, March 12) while producers sought a reporter to take the job on permanently.
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6 | April 9, 2012 | Current end of the month. Illinois Public Media plans to carry on the strong traditions the three veteran staffers have established over three decades, said Mark Leonard, general manager. “We’ll be hiring people for several positions to help us do that.”
Rick Lore is Maryland Public Television’s new v.p. and chief development officer. Lore is responsible for membership, on-air fundraising, major and planned giving, publications, outreach and community engagement at the state network headquartered in Owings Mills. Lore joined MPT on an interim basis last fall after Joe Krushinsky left his job as v.p. of institutional advancement. Krushinsky now directs station development services at PBS Previously Lore served as executive director of Friends of Milwaukee Public Television, the fundraising affiliate of Milwaukee Public TV; directed on-air fundraising for PBS; and led development at New Hampshire Public Television. Lore, who began his pubTV career in 1989 in San
Sill, left, oversees newsgathering in Pasadena, Lore leads development at MPT, Loper directs news in Oswego. Jose, Calif., has won eight PBS development awards and is a frequent conference speaker.
KPCC in Pasadena has hired newspaper veteran Melanie Sill as executive editor. Sill will oversee daily newsgathering operations across broadcast, digital and social media platforms. She joins pubcasting after spending nearly early four years as editor and senior v.p. of the Sacramento Bee, the flagship
The talents who anchored WILL’s weekday broadcasts — Williamson, at left, Quinn and Inge — are retiring from Illinois Public Media.
paper of the McClatchy Co., and completing a six-month Executive-in-Residence program at the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism. Previously, Sill worked at the News & Observer of Raleigh, N.C., for 24 years, rising to become executive editor and senior vice president in 2002. Sill began her journalism career in 1981 as a North Carolina state capital reporter for the United Press International.
Three pubcasters who have anchored daytime broadcasts at Illinois Public Media’s WILL-FM/AM for decades are retiring. David Inge and Harriet Williamson of Focus, the station’s mid-morning talk show, and Celeste Quinn of Afternoon Magazine will be saying farewell to listeners and colleagues over the next three months. In his 29 years as host of Focus, Inge has conducted more than 12,000 interviews. He started at the Urbana-based pubcasting outlet as a classical music announcer and later became a reporter. He also hosted WILLTV’s public affairs show Talking Point from 1992 until it ended in 2001. He retires on June 30. Williamson, producer of Focus, began at WILL as a volunteer. She joined the staff in 1996, and retires in mid-June. Quinn signed on at WILL in 1980 as a reporter and took on hosting duties for Afternoon Magazine in 1993. She also edits WILLConnect, Illinois Public Media’s community engagement website. She retires at the
Local Morning Edition host and reporter Scott Graf is leaving WFAE-FM in Charlotte, N.C., after eight years, bound for Boise State Public Radio. There he’ll join former WFAE-FM program director Paul Stribling, who moved to the Idaho station last June. At Boise, Graf will host Morning Edition and take on additional editing responsibilities, he told the Charlotte Observer. At WFAE, Marshall Terry, local Morning Edition producer, will temporarily take over hosting duties. American Public Media has named Sitara Nieves, a member of the founding production team of The Takeaway, as the new senior producer of Marketplace. Nieves was promoted last year to senior producer of The Takeaway, the Public Radio International morning drive-time show that’s produced at WNYC in New York. Before helping launch that show in 2008, she worked as a multimedia journalist at The Economist. Following a nationwide search, Capital Public Radio in Sacramento, Calif., has hired Emmy Award–winning journalist Beth Ruyak as the new host of Insight, its daily pubaffairs talk show. The spot was vacated last December by Jeffrey Callison, who took a job as press secretary for the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. Ruyak’s previous media experience includes covering six Olympic Games for NBC or CBS; three Tour de France bicycle races for KCRA, Sacramento; USA Today TV and Good Morning America; and guest co-hosting Good Morning America with Joan Lunden in 1990. Steve Brown is the new music director at WVTF, a hybrid-format NPR News and music station in Roanoke, Va. Since joining the station in 2001, Brown has taken on multiple roles. As host of weekday morning and afternoon Classics shows from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., he handles “a lengthy announcContinued on next page
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Hearing by ethics watchdogs could sew up feud in Seattle
embers of a Seattle-based mediawatchdog group weighed in March 31 on a year-long dispute between an antiabortion group and KUOW, the city’s all-news pubradio outlet, bringing the disagreement to an end for the time being. A majority of panelists convened by the Washington News Council voted in agreement that KUOW had made errors in a story involving the Vitae Foundation, and that the mistakes merited on-air corrections or clarifications. KUOW had already corrected and clarified the story, though only on its website. But most members of the WNC panel agreed that KUOW had no responsibility to give the Vitae Foundation additional onair coverage after the story aired. Vitae had asked KUOW for on-air reporting as reparation for the initial story’s flaws, and initially the news council had backed that request. The dispute between KUOW and Vitae, a nonprofit based in Jefferson City, Mo., began in April 2011 when the station aired a story about an advertising campaign sponsored by Vitae. The group’s billboards directed women with unplanned pregnancies to a website, YourOptions.com. The website lists abortion as an option for handling an unexpected pregnancy, but the KUOW report didn’t explicitly say that. Vitae objected that KUOW’s report had mischaracterized its website. KUOW responded to the complaint by running a clarification on its website but not on the air. Vitae also argued that the story should have included an interview with one of their representatives, but KUOW News Director Guy Nelson disagreed, arguing that the story was not solely about Vitae. Unsatisfied with KUOW’s actions and responses, Vitae filed a complaint with the WNC, a nonprofit that promotes fairness and accountability among news outlets in
Washington state. The WNC tried to mediate a compromise between Vitae and KUOW. Along with Vitae, it urged KUOW to do a follow-up story about the foundation. KUOW’s Nelson says he considered assigning such a story but has so far decided against it. The issue that prompted the original report — whether antiabortion pregnancy centers should be required to be more clear about the services they offer — is no longer under consideration in the legislature, Nelson says, so no further coverage has been warranted. Although the WNC had advised KUOW to air a follow-up story, its own hearings board voted 10-1 at the March 31 meeting that KUOW had no responsibility to provide any additional on-air coverage of Vitae after the story aired. CPB Ombudsman Joel Kaplan agreed in an online column. “A credible and responsible news organization promptly corrects its mistakes,” he wrote. “It does not trade its most valuable commodity — its airtime — as a way to apologize by promoting a story on an organization that does not pass the newsworthy test.” The WNC also voted unanimously on the question of whether KUOW had a “journalistic responsibility to contact Vitae Foundation, YourOptions and/or CareNet for comment” before airing its story. That question was considered, even though KUOW’s reporter had called CareNet while reporting on the initial story. The reporter said she did not receive a response. The WNC’s Hearings Board was made up mostly of academics and former journalists. The hearing was only its fifth since the council’s founding in 1998. It has fielded more than two dozen complaints, however, and mediated several compromises, according to President John Hamer. —Mike Janssen
Animals, a global animal-welfare organization. Lieberman spent 12 years at WNET, from 1981 to 1993; her production credits include Homosexuality: Nature vs. Nurture, nominated for a local Emmy in 1986. .
Continued from previous page ing schedule by any broadcasting standards,” according to Rick Mattioni, p.d. Brown produces and hosts live broadcasts of the Roanoke Symphony Orchestra and WVTF’s “Inside the Music” podcast. He also directs public service for the station, a job he’ll retain as music director. His background includes an earlier stint at WUWF Public Radio in Pensacola, Fla. Brown is a composer whose work has been performed by orchestras and musical ensembles locally and around the world. WRVO Public Media, based at the State University of New York College at Oswego, has appointed Catherine J. Loper director of news and public affairs. She’ll also serve as the senior reporter and producer of WRVO’s regional and public affairs coverage and host WRVO’s Community Forum series. Loper’s broadcasting career spans 20 years and includes recent stints directing news for the Washington, D.C., bureau of Fox News Channel; from 2007–10 she directed White House coverage for the network. Anne Lieberman, a former producer for New York’s WNET, is the new executive director of the United States office of the World Society for the Protection of
| April 9, 2012 | 7
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Marketing/Development Amy Wielunski will join New York Public Radio/WNYC as fundraising manager for its classical music outlet WQXR on April 30. She departs dual-licensee WSKG in Binghamton, N.Y., where she managed membership and special events. Her previous jobs in pubradio development include directing membership at Baltimore’s WTMD and managing corporate accounts at WAMU in Washington, D.C. Wielunski also co-hosted the popular Public Media Chat, a weekly Twitter forum for digital staff and advocates at public stations, in 2010. Rich Siden is a new account manager on the Local Corporate Sponsorship team at WGBH in Boston. Siden has 27 years of sales and marketing experience in TV and radio. Previously he was an account manager at CBS Television in Boston. He also managed group accounts at Entercom Communications, also in Boston.
Management Tom Dollenmayer, who spent nearly 10 Continued on page 13
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8 | April 9, 2012 | Current
Continued from page 2 urally suited for the iPad, according to Peter Edstrom, a project manager for PRI. “Our core content is audio, but we’re continuing to experiment with different ways to get PRI content out to people.” The electronic book is free for download on Apple’s iBookstore. It features slideshows, photos that can be manipulated, diagrams, embedded videos and text. The idea behind the Studio 360 episode, which aired in January, was to update the image of teachers. Instead of traditional symbols associated with educators — apples, ABCs and school bells — the design firm Hyperakt took a thematic approach, building on the tagline “Teachers connect the dots.” Key images include the word “Teach” written as dots and lines, a round molecular structure of dots and lines, and interconnected points on a map of the continents. The book details how these designs can be applied to a wide range of products and messages – teacher recruitment campaigns, posters, bathroom signage, T-shirts, even temporary tattoos.
The book “walks you through the process of how anything, really, becomes designed,” said Julia Yager, PRI’s v.p. of marketing. It includes images of the design process from early sketches to finished product. “You can’t convey that as well on radio, but it’s beautiful in the book.” PRI’s interactive team produced the book after three weeks of “rolling experimentation,” Edstrom said. It was officially released in the iBookstore Feb. 13, but PRI delayed its official unveiling until March 14. — Rhys Heyden
WTCI plans to launch a new multicast channel of local programming with seed funding from the city of Chattanooga. The Voyager channel will carry live coverage of civic events, such as city-council meetings throughout the region and issuefocused town hall events. It will also feature a new weekly series on arts and culture. Local documentaries and WTCI’s own five weekly series would also get additional plays on the channel. Content will be accessible across multiple platforms and promoted via social media. The station requested $250,000 from the
Media Access Project runs out of funds, will shut down The Media Access Project, a public-interest law firm focused on media issues, announced last week that it will close its doors May 1 due to a lack of funds. Raising funds for public-interest groups has become more challenging, said Andrew Jay Schwartzman, MAP’s senior v.p., and the firm’s “sophisticated, inside-the-Beltway” work is a hard sell for supporters. MAP had recently lost support from Open Society Foundations, the philanthropic organization established by liberal financier George Soros. Founded in 1973, the Washington, D.C.-based firm has added its voice to debates over diversity in media ownership, the FCC’s creation of its low-power FM service, net neutrality and other issues. MAP will host a sendoff event in May to celebrate its accomplishments and “to help retire its small debt,” the organization said in a press release. Chattanooga City Council to develop the channel and solicit support from foundations and corporate sponsors, according to Paul Grove, WTCI president. The council will vote on the funding request later this summer. Grove sees the channel as an important community-engagement service as policymakers begin developing the region’s firstever 40-year growth plan. “That’s a big thing for this community and this region,” Grove said, “and we think we can play a vital role
Continued from page 1 Director and the JPR Foundation.” Neither Kramer nor JPRF were accused of wrongdoing. “No one is saying that there is malfeasance,” said Jim Beaver, spokesperson for SOU. “We are just saying there needs to be some tighter controls.” After the dispute erupted into public view last month, all three parties — SOU, Kramer and JPRF — hope to negotiate a settlement. A previous attempt at mediation broke down last November. It’s complicated The dispute centers on Kramer’s ambitious expansion of JPR and its sibling nonprofit over decades, the unusual business model he developed to sustain them and competing ideas about standards for preventing conflicts of interest in nonprofit fundraising and operations. When Kramer signed on in 1975, KSOR was a 10-watt, student-operated campus station, and he set out to convert it into a fullservice public radio station. “KSOR grew into a network of satellite radio stations owned and operated by (the university) and was renamed JPR,” according to the audit report. Today, through its translator system, JPR covers a 60,000–square-mile area of southern Oregon and northern California. It’s the largest translator network in public radio, according to Beaver. The sister nonprofit JPRF, founded in 1997, operates JeffNet, an Internet service provider serving southern Oregon since 1995. It also owns two performance venues — the Cascade Theater in northern California and the historic Holly Theater in downtown Medford, Ore. The latter venue, purchased in 2010, and a nearby 28,000– square-foot warehouse that was donated that same year by a local businessman are part of a major renovation project that would provide a new home for JPR. Although JPRF signed the contract to purchase the Holly in October 2010, the deal didn’t close until April 2011. The total for both renovations is about $7
The JPR Foundation’s plan to renovate the Holly Theater in downtown Medford includes a new headquarters for the radio station, but university auditors see the project as too risky. (Artist’s rendering courtesy of JPRF.) million. JPRF Chair Steve Nelson, a professional financial advisor, said the foundation would undertake renovations on an incremental pay-as-you-go basis. The foundation pulled off a similar project nearly a decade ago when the Cascade Theater in Redding, Calif., reopened in 2004 after a four-year renovation. The Oregon University System supported this expansion, but last year’s audit cautioned against allowing JPRF to take on more debt for the new project. As the university sees it, allowing Kramer to wear two hats — as executive director of both JPR and its sister nonprofit — poses a serious conflict of interest, and it’s insisting that the two jobs be separated. After combing through accounting records of both organizations last year, university auditors concluded that funds are commingled and the current arrangement poses a “high risk” to the university if not resolved. In addition, Kramer had negotiated contracts between the university and the foundation, presenting a clear conflict of interest in representing the interests of both entities. “It’s really an involved, complicated relationship that the two organizations have,”
Beaver said. “Some assets are owned by the foundation, some by the university, but they are used by the radio station.” Some university employees perform work for the foundation. “We just need to have some insulation between the two organizations.” Nelson believes the system has worked well throughout the years, and has kept JPR thriving. “If you duplicate administrative functions, those dollars have to come from somewhere,” said Nelson. “If we have to pay for a separate executive director and staff, guess who will get the short shrift: radio.” “We need a lean administrative structure so we can do outside-the-box projects to fund the quality of radio that our listening audience has become accustomed to,” Nelson said. Although many pubcasting outlets have sister nonprofits that operate as their fundraising arms, JPR’s structure is unusual. “I think you’ll find unanimous agreement in the nonprofit world that the same person should not head a foundation and, at the same time, run the entity that foundation exists to support,” said Rob Gordon, president of Nashville Public Radio. “You have to wonder why this wasn’t raised before.”
in that.” WTCI will retain editorial control of Voyager. Voyager would replace the current lineup on WTCI’s multicast 45.2, which combines programming from Create, the lifestyle channel distributed by American Public Television, with state-legislature coverage and regional high-school and college sports. — Dru Sefton Continued on page 15
So why has this become an issue now? One answer, alluded to by the auditors, is that southern Oregon’s Rogue Valley has a limited pool of money, and the foundation’s fundraising and capital campaign efforts cut into those of the university. The university is also concerned about its own liability. “The foundation is in the business of making money, and if they make enough money, then they send it to the radio station,” said Beaver. “For the university’s sake, they are concerned about some risk. What if the foundation can’t cover its expenses? Would they, for example, use money donated to membership to pay for the lack of ticket sales at a Lily Tomlin concert at the Cascade?” As Kramer sees it, JPR’s unusual business model developed in response to declining university support. Since 2001 SOU’s direct funding to JPR has dropped 50 percent, he said. “Of course, the cost of providing radio has not gone down. So the challenge for the foundation was to find ways to keep everything afloat. So it launched initiatives that are not directly related to radio.” Beaver told the Medford Mail Tribune that university officials didn’t see a problem with the foundation’s assets until after the purchase of the Holly Theater, which “raised a red flag with auditors.” Kramer believes that the purpose of the audit was to force his ouster. “[I]n hindsight, the audit seems to have been ordered to have a predetermined conclusion,” he said. Nashville Public Radio’s Gordon has known Kramer for 30 years, and says the university has taken on a formidable opponent. “It’s nearly impossible to win an argument with Ron Kramer,” said Gordon. “He is so smart, and he has this aggressive intellect and energy to defend his position. I mean that as a compliment. If he’s convinced himself of the rightness of running both organizations, I expect he will do whatever it takes to prevail.” Nelson, the foundation board chair, was circumspect about prospects for resolving the dispute. “This is pretty much a stay-tuned situation,” he said. “We are going into mediation, and we hope we can design a regime that allows us all success.” n
Centralcast Continued from page 1
provided matching grants for broadcasting equipment have ended that support. As a system, “we need to take a look at a monumental change in thinking,” he said. The Jacksonville initiative is similar to Centralcast LLC in New York, announced last fall and backed by $6.6 million from CPB. It will initially serve nine pubTV stations in New York and four in New Jersey (Current, Oct. 3, 2011). CPB predicts similar savings there, perhaps up to $2.5 million per year, once it launches this fall. Meanwhile, Portland-based Oregon Public Broadcasting and Southern Oregon Public Television in Medford recently agreed to expand their programming partnership. OPB programmers have handled scheduling for the much-smaller community licensee in the southwest corner of the state for years, with SOPTV broadcasting OPB productions such as Oregon Field Guide and Art Beat. Starting in July, SOPTV will take OPB’s entire feed, retaining the ability to insert its own interstitials, underwriting and branding. The new arrangement saves the cost of programming a separate broadcast schedule, about $10,000 annually. Uncertainty over the future of SOPTV’s federal aid triggered the change, said Mark Stanislawski, chief executive. To reduce the station’s reliance on checks from Washington, the SOPTV board asked him to trim 10 percent of its annual CPB aid out of the 2012 budget. SOPTV already does well for a small market in fundraising, he said, so “it’s not realistic to push that envelope even higher, especially in a recessionary environment.”
Colo5, a disaster-secure building in Jacksonville, Fla., will house the new pubTV centralcasting facility. The shared master control will have the capacity to run programming for up to 12 stations. Seven have already signed on. SOPTV needed “some other option, a different way to do business,” Stanislawski said. Stations in the Jacksonville alliance are looking for new business models as well. Boylan expects that the facility could serve pubcasters far beyond the southeastern group that’s already on board. “We have been and continue to be in active discussions with stations in California, Texas, Colorado and Minnesota,” he said. The Jacksonville joint master control will have the capacity to handle up to 34 streams from 10 to 12 stations. It will be located in the hurricane-secure facility Colo5, where the partners plan to lease space. Establishing centralcasting facilities in Florida and New York will help keep prices
Don’t make them fight over it.
low and quality high as each competes for station business, said Mark Erstling, senior v.p., system development, during the CPB Board meeting. Geography is no longer a hurdle: Modern fiber-optics reduced the costs of linking a farflung station to the Florida facility to about $200 more per month than a Florida station would pay. “Cost differentials have removed geography from the equation,” Erstling said. The Jacksonville fiber provider, TW Telecom, operates transmissions through more than 27,000 miles of fiber to almost 14,000 buildings in 75 markets. Affordable access to fiber allowed the Oregon pubcasters to expand their partner-
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ship. OPB already leases fiber from a commercial vendor for other purposes, said Steve Bass, president. Necessary upgrades to OPB’s master control will be covered by $150,000 in bond money left from the DTV transition. The move is “the logical next step” in the relationship between the two stations, which have worked collaboratively for years, Bass said. Three board members from each station continue to discuss additional possibilities for expanding their partnership. The shared schedule helps ensure the best possible service to the entire state, Bass said, “and that’s part of our mission.” There’s no signal overlap between the two: OPB covers about 85 percent of the state from Portland, in the far north; and SOPTV broadcasts in the south, from Medford to the California border. OPB is in the 22nd largest television market; SOPTV, the 140th. OPB didn’t want to get into the multiplestation centralcast business. “The challenge with a joint master is, if you’re going to centralize all that work then somebody has to be a vendor,” Bass said. OPB didn’t see much revenue potential in taking on that role. “We’d rather focus on news and content, and not on being somebody’s technical provider,” he said. Boylan sees opportunities to provide more than transmission services to clients by operating as a centralized repository for sharing and potentially marketing content. A documentary producer could access video from multiple stations, or a station that produces exceptional graphics or promo materials could market them to others. “With connectivity among facilities, we can create revenue opportunities for all participating stations,” he said. n Comments, questions, tips? email@example.com
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E-mail copy to us as a Word document and fax or email a Classified Insertion Order giving details (blank forms at current.org/ advertise). We can bill you or charge your credit card.
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Management/Finance Radio Station Manager WLRN, Miami, FL
Vice President Membership & Marketing WPBT2 seeks experienced fundraising leader to develop and execute strategies for our on-air, online, direct mail, corporate support and telefundraising areas. The position is responsible for development and execution of the station’s overall marketing plans, strategies and tactics to position WPBT2 in the South Florida community, and for determining performance goals and objectives for cultivation, retention and increased giving. This position is a key member of WPBT2’s executive team and reports to the COO. The ideal candidate will have a Bachelor’s degree and a minimum of five years senior management experience, preferably in marketing; public television experience preferred. Must be able to set goals, organize personnel, delegate responsibilities and motivate subordinates. Excellent verbal and writing skills required. WPBT2 is located in Miami and is a community-licensed public television station serving South Florida from the Treasure Coast to the Florida Keys. WPBT2 produces and provides programs and services to the community through varied media platforms. South Florida is a dynamic and diverse area rich in arts and culture. Send resume with cover letter to: WPBT2, HR, P.O. Box 610002, Miami, FL 33261-0002, or firstname.lastname@example.org, EOE, M/F/D/V
WLRN Public Radio is seeking a dynamic and experienced leader to oversee its day-to-day operations. WLRN 91.3 FM is an NPR member station serving the South Florida communities of Miami, West Palm Beach and Key West. The position reports to WLRN’s General Manager. WLRN-FM is licensed to Miami-Dade County Public Schools, an EEO employer. Applications are accepted on line only through www. dadeschools.net. Key: Human Resources. Incomplete applications will not be considered.
Engineering/Technology Broadcast Operations Manager KRWG-FM, Las Cruces, NM KRWG-FM, a service of New Mexico State University, seeks an energetic Broadcast Operations Manager (Requisition 0600358). The manager is responsible for all on-air operations, including supervisory duties. The position also includes on-air responsibilities as assigned. Requirements: High school diploma or GED and six (6) years’ experience related to the duties as outlined. A post-secondary degree or certificate may substitute for years of experience. Minimum salary: $41,000, commensurate with experience. Review of applicants will continue until position is filled. Visit jobs.nmsu.edu for application
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information. No phone calls or emails, please. NMSU is an EEO/AA employer. Chief Technology Officer Public Media Connect – CET/ ThinkTV, Cincinnati/Dayton, OH Public Media Connect, the regional public media/television organization formed by CET in Cincinnati and ThinkTV in Dayton, Ohio, seek applicants for its opening for a Chief Technology Officer, a Senior Management position reporting directly to the President. This is a fully “hands-on” position with direct responsibility for leading, managing, and designing Broadcast Engineering, MIS/ IT, Web, and other communications and distribution systems. The CTO will be tasked with assuring optimal program distribution, technical operational excellence and efficiencies, and the organization’s technical capability as related to its two interconnected full-service facilities, three broadcast stations, and other technology based systems. Requirements for this position include a Bachelor’s degree in an appropriate technical discipline and extensive, demonstrated technical management experience in the areas listed above. On-line engineering experience in broadcast television with public media background strongly preferred. Advanced degree and/or certifications desirable. Must have broad based knowledge of current broadcast, production, and IT technologies, systems and trends. Ability to communicate complex technical information clearly to both technical and Continued on next page
Directory of Services Fundraising
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non-technical audiences is essential. Experience in preparing and monitoring budgets and planning for capital improvements also required. Additionally, this person will be expected to willingly and regularly travel between PMC locations to insure consistent standards of operation, excellence in staff performance, and adequate customer service to all employees and external entities. If interested and qualified, please send cover letter and resume to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Public Media Connect is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Director, Engineering & Operations, WUSF Public Media Tampa, FL The DEO administers and directs all engineering, technical, website, traffic and production operations including planning, organizing and directing and maintaining all activities in pursuit of WUSF Public Media’s mission and goals: Administers compliance with all appropriate FCC regulations; Coordinates and facilitates engineering and IT systems upgrades and maintenance for all departments; Develops annual department budget and coordinates research and acquisition of equipment in coordination with the appropriate departments at USF; Manages the development of internal systems and
materials for delivery of programs and services on all platforms; Ensures that functions specifically directed toward USF students are given a high priority and are fully operational; Develops and maintains cooperative relationships with various divisions, campus and university committees and represents the unit or department at various community and student functions; Encourages staff to engage in activities that support all aspects of WUSF Public Media; Represents WUSF Public Media to the audience concerning reception and engineering issues. For more information and to apply: employment.usf.edu/ applicants/Central?quickFind=58848. Application deadline: Until filled.
Development/Marketing Underwriting Account Executive Alabama Public Radio, Tuscaloosa Alabama Public Radio is seeking an Underwriting Account Executive to develop underwriting sales in the Mobile/Gulf Coast region. This is an opportunity to be a part of the development team for the APR network which broadcasts across three-fourths of the state of Alabama. The candidate must possess the ability to research, generate and maintain client relationships to increase station underwriting revenue. Exceptional verbal, writing, planning and organizational skills are required. The University of Alabama offers generous benefits, and a base plus commission salary for
this full time position. Visit Employment Opportunities at jobs.ua.edu for more information and to apply. Closing date 05/04/2012. EEO/AA. The University of Alabama is an equal-opportunity educational institution/employer. Vice President for Membership Development North Texas Public Broadcasting (NTPB), Dallas
| April 9, 2012 | 11
donor database software system is essential. A Bachelor’s degree is required (Master’s degree or preferred). NTPB provides a competitive salary based upon professional experience and achievement, and a full benefits package. For a full job description and to apply, visit kera.org/about/employment or fax resume to 214-740-9323. NTPB is an Equal Opportunity Employer
NTPB, the Dallas/Fort Worth NPR and PBS member station, seeks a Vice President to lead the membership programs for three public media services, KERA TV, KERA 90.1 (news) and KXT 91.7 (AAA music). The successful candidate will have a proven track record of fundraising achievement that includes: effective strategic and managerial leadership, advanced marketing and communication skills (including those for digital media), and the ability to establish and advance multiple priorities. The VP will motivate and mentor others and foster creative approaches to achieve membership and philanthropic goals. Requirements: 5+ years of experience in successfully leading a membership and/or applicable fundraising/marketing program (preferably in public media/ non-profit sector), results-oriented marketing techniques, and the ability to work in partnership with diverse teams (volunteers, staff members, donors and community representatives). Superior leadership, organizational, management, marketing and communication skills are necessary. Experience with a
Manager, On-Air Fundraising Colorado Public Radio, Centennial
The position is responsible for all on-air fundraising, including pledge drives and year-round promotional spots for Colorado Public Radio News, Classical and OpenAir stations; and for positioning CPR as a trusted community resource. Responsibilities and duties include developing and executing strategies for on-air fundraising that are in keeping with Colorado Public Radio’s high professional standards and consistent with our growing relevance in Colorado; analyzing drive results to determine best practices as well as new opportunities and strategies; managing Fundraising production staff and providing standards of excellence in on-air production; developing scripting, production schedules and expected outcomes for production staff and programming producers. For complete details please visit our website at www. cpr.org and click on Employment OpContinued on next page
Directory of Services Fundraising
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portunities. Bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience required; public radio experience preferred. Knowledge and competencies include demonstrated coaching skills in directing hosts in preproduced and live settings; excellent knowledge of broadcast operations, editing software (ProTools and Cool Edit Pro a plus) and field recording technologies; proficiency with computers and software including word processing and spreadsheets; national quality writing, interviewing and audio editing abilities; superior interpersonal and leadership skills; excellent verbal, written, and listening skills. Please send a cover letter, resume, audio/script samples and three professional references to hr@ cpr.org, with Manager, On-Air Fundraising Position in the subject line. Competitive salary and benefits. No phone calls, please. Colorado Public Radio is an equal opportunity employer and encourages workplace diversity. Director of Campaigns WAMU, Washington, DC Summary: This position is responsible for directing the capital and special fundraising campaigns conducted by WAMU 88.5 American University Radio. The Director will be responsible for developing and implementing campaign operational plans and working with departmental and university colleagues to develop collateral materials. This position will also be responsible for leading a team of fundraisers in the identification, research and cultivation of donor prospects to ensure the success of the campaigns. This position reports to the Director of Development and is expected to work under limited supervision. Salary depends upon qualifications and is commensurate with experience. Qualifications: B.A. required; M.A. preferred, CFRE or ACFRE designation preferred; minimum five years’ relevant fundraising experience, including capital campaign experience, preferably with two different, successful campaigns; proven track record of fundraising success; familiarity with local and national funding sources; excellent written communication skills; strong organizational and managerial skills; ability to recruit, motivate, and train campaign volunteers; willingness to travel approximately 1/3 of the time, predominantly in MD, VA, and DC; committed public media listener to clearly articulate the distinctiveness of philanthropic support for a local public radio station; willingness to commit to the duration of each capital campaign. Additional Info: This is a time-limited (minimum 2 years) position subject to renewal of employment depending on progress toward campaign goals. This position is initially available through March 31, 2014. A cover letter highlighting applicable experience, a resume and three professional references including titles, addresses and telephone may be attached to the online application at jobs.american.edu. Applications are required to be submit-
ted through the online application site, and will be accepted until the position is filled. American University offers a generous benefit package and is an EEO/ AA employer.
Programming/Production Part-time Web Producer WAMU, Washington, DC The Web Producer works closely with the Online Managing Editor to coordinate the online production of exclusive web content that augments the regular broadcasts of The Kojo Nnamdi Show and The Diane Rehm Show. This includes managing the shows’ home and segment pages, as well as their social media initiatives. A bachelor’s degree, or an equivalent combination of experience and education, is required for this position. Candidates should also have at least 1-2 years of experience in web communications or journalism. Applicants should have a thorough understanding of web design and content, as well as social media strategy. The ability to multi-task and work effectively under time constraints is a must, as are strong written and verbal communication skills. This position is temporary, with a duration of five months, beginning in May 2012. Please apply online at jobs. american.edu/LoginPage.aspx. Part-time Producer The Diane Rehm Show WAMU, Washington, DC Working closely with the Executive Producer / Host and the Managing Producer, the Producer creates topical issue oriented daily live interview / listener call-in programs. The Producer is also responsible for assigning tasks and reviewing the work of others. A bachelor’s degree, or an equivalent combination of experience and education, is required for this position. An additional 5 to 8 years’ experience in the industry is also required. Excellent communication skills, both written and verbal, are a must. The ability to manage creative talent and work effectively under time constraints is also crucial. An awareness of current events and their role in content development is key. The applicant must also possess the ability to conduct research and compile interview materials (including Q&A) for the show. The producer should understand the constraints and opportunities presented by radio as a medium and be able to react to breaking news and unexpected events in a calm and professional manner. Radio production experience, specifically talk show experience, is preferred. The incumbent will typically work between 20 - 27 hours per week. However, the incumbent may be asked to work for up to 35 hours a week for a period no longer than 3 months. Please apply online at jobs. american.edu/LoginPage.aspx. Senior Producer, Colorado Matters Colorado Public Radio, Centennial At Colorado Public Radio we’re seeking a Senior Producer for Colorado Matters. The Senior Producer manages
and oversees Colorado Matters, a daily taped program featuring host interviews and reporter pieces; manages a team of producers and freelancers; serves as primary backup to the Assistant News Director; and is accountable for editorial content and ensuring that the broadcasts meet KCFR’s news standards. Essential Duties and Responsibilities Include: Program development: work with host, producers and freelancers to develop story ideas; approve story pitches; ensure that producers are approaching topics thoroughly and selecting the appropriate guests; set goals with producers and work with them to ensure they are meeting the goals and have the resources they need; regularly evaluate Colorado Matters to ensure that: the program explores key topics substantially; interviews are wellresearched and balanced; guests are engaging and interviews are structured to keep the listener engaged. Identify ways to improve the program and work with News Director to shape direction of show and implement changes; produce interviews. For complete details please visit our website at www.cpr. org and click on Employment Opportunities. Please apply if you have considerable journalistic experience, five years or more, and have managed people. Ideally you have experience managing a show and/or producing interviews. Please send a cover letter, resume, samples and three professional references to email@example.com, with Senior Producer in the subject line. Competitive benefits. No phone calls, please. Colorado Public Radio is an equal opportunity employer and encourages workplace diversity. Producer / Reporter Colorado Matters Colorado Public Radio, Centennial Colorado Public Radio has a large and growing news department and is set in a beautiful state that is popping with important issues and fascinating stories. We need a producer for our daily show Colorado Matters, someone who can get his or her arms around big topics without losing sight of telling details; who can spot a trend a mile off; who can zero in on the human side of policy debates and who can both work independently, when necessary, and collaborate with a staff of seasoned journalists. The producer finds potential sources for the host to interview using high-level reporting to understand issues and identify best guests, prepares the host with script and background materials and edits the interviews. We value creative, conversational writing and an ability to think outside the box to get the story told. For complete details please visit our website at www. cpr.org and click on Employment Opportunities. Requirements: High-level writing and audio-editing skills to distill complex matters. 3-5 years’ journalism; experience in public radio. Able to work collaboratively, meet deadlines, juggle multiple tasks. Ability to cover a range of subject matter. Experience reporting news features and news spots
ideal; experience covering government/ statehouse a plus. Please send a cover letter, resume, audio samples and three professional references to firstname.lastname@example.org, with Producer/Reporter in the subject line. Competitive salary and benefits. No phone calls, please. Colorado Public Radio is an equal opportunity employer and encourages workplace diversity. Morning Edition Host/Editor WFPL News, Louisville, KY WFPL News/Louisville Public Media is continuing a major expansion of local news. We’re seeking a smart, capable, focused Morning Edition anchor with hostiness who can connect with our growing audience. This individual will also have proven hosting and interviewing skills. In addition to hosting morning drive, this individual will also edit stories for broadcast and online, and other duties as assigned. The successful candidate will join a team committed to important local news in Louisville, which is consistently listed as one of the top cities in the U.S. to live, work and raise a family in. Visit our website www. louisvillepublicmedia.org for details. Resume and links to work samples: email@example.com or News Director, Louisville Public Media, 619 South 4th Street, Louisville, Ky 40202. Louisville Public Media is an equal opportunity employer and actively seeks diversity in the workplace to reflect the community it serves. Executive Producer/Host Blue Ridge PBS, Roanoke, VA Blue Ridge PBS, serving Western Virginia and portions of four other states from Roanoke, VA, has an immediate opening for an Executive Producer/ Host. The ideal candidate will be able to lead a team of professionals who are working to fulfill our mission statement — “be the region’s storyteller.” Excellent writing and editing skills as well as on camera experience required. Bachelor’s degree or equivalent and 5 years’ experience preferred. Thorough knowledge of video production and long-form storytelling needed. Excellent interpersonal skills essential. Ability to budget and manage a team of professionals in a rapidly changing environment required. Blue Ridge PBS is an EOE. Women and minorities are encouraged to apply. E-mail cover letter and resume to jobs@ blueridgepbs.org. Visit www.blueridgepbs.org for a complete position description. Blue Ridge PBS is a non-smoking work site. Associate Producer, Public Television Documentary Two Cats Productions New York, NY Seeking a very strong Associate Producer to work on a high-end feature length documentary dealing with a number of political and social issues. The AP will report directly to the Executive Producer. The ideal candidate has: a strong journalistic sense, firsthand experience in serious journalistic settings and in documentaries; strong history of Continued on next page
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complex newsgathering domestically and internationally; experience setting up shoots, call sheets and booking gear; strong research skills to find people, documents, secrets, stories, FOIAs etc.; some undercover experience, i.e. hidden camera; a drivers’ license to drive a large crew van; knowledge of Avid, digitizing, drives, decks, media, etc.; great attitude and willingness to work long hours, weekends etc. This job may be extremely time-consuming and applicants should consider this before applying. Fun NYC office with some travel and possible international travel. Please include a detailed cover letter and resume to: firstname.lastname@example.org. News Director/Editor WYPR, Baltimore, MD WYPR is looking for a News Director to lead a staff of two full time reporters, one producer/reporter, a producer and freelancers. The News Director will be in charge of organizing and leading stringers and full-time staff and thinking broadly about projects to add perspective and dimension to reporting on the problems and issues of Baltimore and the state of Maryland, both on-air and on-line. This job will include recruiting, supervising and training freelancers with an eye to increasing diversity on the reporting staff. The News Director will edit, assign stories, and organize local coverage for our award-winning Department. Candidates should have strong background in radio; editorial and management experience; and the vision to lead our News Department as we continue to expand. Candidates should submit a cover letter detailing the source where you saw this posting along with resume, two references, and two audio samples of produced interviews to: WYPR-Business Manager, 2216 N. Charles St., Baltimore, MD 21218, or to email@example.com. NO PHONE CALLS PLEASE. WYPR is an EOE.
Deadline reminder It’s time to make your advertising plans for these special issues: Publication date: April 23 Grantmakers in Film & Media Advertising deadline: Monday, April 16
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Publication date: May 29 PMBA Conference Advertising deadline: Monday, May 21
Program Director KMFA, Austin, TX 89.5 KMFA – All-Classical Public Radio for Central Texas (a community licensee) has an opening for Program Director in one of the most desirable markets in the U.S.: Austin, Texas. The winning candidate has excellent interpersonal, team management and leadership skills; extensive knowledge of classical music and classical radio programming experience; demonstrated fundraising, public speaking and presentation expertise and working knowledge of programming and production best practices. Exemplary on-air hosting and program production ability (including live broadcast, interviewing, fundraising and special programming) a must. PD responsibilities include but are not limited to: work with programming team, management and key stakeholders to establish and communicate overall strategic direction for station programming; oversee and develop programming content, positioning and promotion on-air, online and externally; inspire and manage performance of all programming staff; work closely with Major Giving, Membership, Underwriting and Communications to optimize revenue/ audience goals; recommend and be accountable for annual programming budget; insure FCC/CPB compliance; manage syndicated programming relationships; manage external relationships in the community as they pertain to content creation and community engagement — including performing arts organizations, Community Advisory Board and Board of Trustees Programming Committee. Classical 89.5, KMFA is an equal opportunity employer and encourages workplace diversity. Wellqualified, interested applicants should send a cover letter, resume and mp3 samples (including fundraising pitch sample) to jobs@KMFA.org. No phone calls (thank you). Position reports to the President & General Manager and is open until filled. A full description of duties can be found here: www.kmfa.org/ about_jobs.htm.
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Innovative Radio Producer / Talent A young visionary with a strong liberal arts background, national radio experience, and passion for classical and Latin music. Trained by American Public Media’s Performance Today producers and Member Services department. Listen to my latest podcast episode: www. spanglishnoise.com. Contact: joseph. firstname.lastname@example.org.
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ture, as LJCs that have claimed their subjects and presented them coherently. Less successful in this regard was the Healthy State Collaborative, which covers health issues in Florida and has lacked focus, Coats said. The Healthy State Collaborative and Changing Gears are among the LJCs that struggled with cross-station collaboration, long-term sustainability and multimedia production, according to Coats. Fronteras and EarthFix, which focuses on environmental issues in the Northwest, have collaborated more successfully, Coats said. CPB launched the LJCs in a two-year initiative to help pubcasters find new ways to produce high-quality multimedia journalism while sharing staff and resources (Current, April 5, 2010). “That’s a relatively easy concept,” says Bruce Theriault, senior v.p. of radio. “It’s not so easy to pull off.” “You have to establish early on the value proposition for all the partners” — what each stakeholder will get from the collaboration, Theriault said. “We saw in some cases that people in a central role didn’t pay attention to that.” Without a solid understanding of what their stations get from participating in the LJC, managers may be more irritated than grateful when reporters in their newsrooms devote time to collaborative reporting instead of a project entirely owned by their station. Face-to-face communication has also proven to be key to managing the partnerships, said Kathy Merritt, senior manager of program investments for CPB. “Where LJCs have made a bigger commitment to inperson meetings and a flow of information among all partners, they’ve been more successful,” she said. CPB is evaluating requests from each of the centers for third-year funding, but the grants will be less than CPB provided in earlier grant cycles. Each of the LJCs have moved beyond startup costs, Theriault said. In his evaluation, Coats recommended that CPB develop a guidebook of best practices for LJCs and require that the centers agree to follow the guidelines as a condition of receiving additional funding.
years at dual licensee WUSF in Tampa, Fla., is the new station manager at WFDD-FM at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, N.C. Dollenmayer served as operations manager and then station manager at WUSF. He joins WFDD following the departure of Denise Franklin, g.m., on March 22. Franklin had been with the station for 11 years, first as a news host; she became g.m. in 2007. KSMQ-TV in Austin, Minn., has a new president and c.e.o., Eric Olson. Olson spent 12 years as a reporter and anchor for KARETV, the NBC affiliate in Minneapolis, and has worked in corporate communications management. He also was an executive producer of Postcards, a weekly variety show on Pioneer Public Television in Appleton that highlights artists, history and cultural heritage in western Minnesota.
Technology NPR has formed a strategic advisory committee for its Digital Services unit, which will meet several times a year. The members are Tom Hjelm, v.p. and chief digital officer,
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Meanwhile, the Changing Gears LJC has decided not to seek additional CPB aid. The partners plan to continue operating the center, but on a timeline that better suits their priorities, said Torey Malatia, president of Chicago’s WBEZ. Malatia’s station participated in Changing Gears along with Cleveland’s ideastream and with Michigan Radio, the lead station on the project. CPB dictated a production timeline that was “fairly aggressive,” Malatia said, and this prevented Changing Gears from achieving the level of in-depth coverage the partners had initially aspired to. “When you add two other partners in a production like this, you slow things down already, just because you’ve added people,” he said. “There’s more time to get to a decision and less time to produce a finished product.” The partners now want to slow down the production schedule “so that we can better handle the production of it and give more depth to the work that we’ve been doing,” Malatia said. Like other LJCs, Changing Gears also ran into challenges with identifying additional funding beyond CPB. The Changing Gears partners were all seeking foundation aid for their separate initiatives before their collaboration began and then struggled to identify potential funders for Changing Gears who hadn’t already been tapped, Malatia said. Merritt and Theriault acknowledged that keeping the LJCs on a quick timeline proved challenging, and that CPB set aggressive goals. Yet some collaborations took longer to ramp up than they had anticipated. “You can’t put these together in a few months,” Theriault says. In some cases, a collaborator’s parent institution had imposed a hiring freeze, and partners had to find workarounds to bring new journalists on board. CPB is willing to consider aiding the LJCs beyond the current funding cycle, but those decisions are further off. Theriault hopes participating stations will eventually be better positioned to operate and fund the LJCs themselves. If the value proposition is strong enough, he says, stations will do “whatever it takes within their power to keep them going, even if that means dropping something else to fund this,” Theriault said. “That would be the ultimate test.” n
WNYC, New York; Dale Hobson, web manager, North Country Public Radio, Canton, N.Y.; Nicole Holloway, g.m., St. Louis Beacon; Bob Kempf, v.p. and g.m. of digital services at NPR; Alexis Rapo, v.p. for broadband and interactive media, WGBH, Boston; Mike Reszler, v.p. of digital media, American Public Media/Minnesota Public Radio; Jake Shapiro, c.e.o, Public Radio Exchange, Cambridge, Mass.; Kinsey Wilson, chief content officer, NPR; and Cory Zanin, e.v.p., operations and strategy, PRI.
Lay leaders Gara LaMarche has been elected to chair the board of StoryCorps, the national oral history project founded by Dave Isay. LaMarche is a senior fellow at New York University’s Robert F. Wagner School of Public Service and former president of the Atlantic Philanthropies. He replaces outgoing Chair Deborah Leff, deputy counselor for the U.S. Justice Department’s Access to Justice Initiative; she remains on the board as a director. Also elected to the board were Audrey Choi, managing director at Morgan Stanley, and Dane Holmes, managing director at Goldman Sachs. n Send People items to email@example.com
14 | April 9, 2012 | Current
Extolling public TV’s mission with an edge Host aims to open minds with pledge travels, too By Rick Steves
love standing on a stage — especially in the American heartland — and saying to 500 public television supporters, “Fear is for people who don’t get out much. When we travel, we get out. And, in the same way, when we watch public television, we get out.” There’s a lot of fear being pushed in our society these days, and as I see it, the flip side of fear is understanding. And, like travel, public television promotes understanding. As much as I love to talk about Europe and the value of a journey that takes you outside your comfort zone, I also love to talk about the mission of public TV to challenge us with new ideas — especially if they get us out of our comfort zones. For 15 years I’ve been traveling to big cities during March pledge season and making personal appearances during local pubTV pitch breaks, producing virtual pledge events for stations in smaller markets. This year I told my friends at WTTW in Chicago, KQED in San Francisco and WGBH in Boston that I’d planned a different kind of pledge tour. My “Road Trip USA” pledge drive took me to 20 different markets — most of them small cities — over 20 days. I travelled from Seattle to Tallahassee, Fla., via places like Boise, Idaho; Grand Junction, Colo.; Des Moines, Iowa; and Conway, Ark. I stopped for lectures and pledge gigs at a different city each night. I ate a lot of
pledge food and still had a great trip. I like to tell audiences, “Considering the challenges confronting our society and the shrill discourse elsewhere on the dial, it’s a blessing to have one channel that respects your intelligence, assumes you have an attention span and brings you programming that’s shaped not by advertisers’ needs but by a passion for bringing you a better understanding of our beautiful world. And because of that, I believe public broadcasting is not a charity. It’s a service. And supporting it is flat-out good citizenship.” When I make this pitch during a pledge drive, the phones start ringing. When I say it during a lecture or public TV station event, it draws applause. When I talk with station managers about how this message is received, many say they appreciate how I talk about mission with an edge. As local broadcasters, it’s something they can’t do as aggressively as they might like to. Not everyone likes to hear edgy talk about public TV’s mission. A couple of times during my tour, station membership directors told me that they’d heard complaints from viewers who were expecting a travel talk, not a speech with a hard-hitting message that linked the broader-perspective values of traveling abroad to the values of public TV. But, as I say in my talks and on-air pitches, the experiences of visiting other countries and watching public TV both allow us to explore the world, better understand the other 96 percent of humanity and realize how inextricably our lives as Americans are linked to those who live in other cultures and on other continents. I believe that if I don’t pro-
It’s public television’s responsibility “to bring home a better understanding of our world,” says travel guru Rick Steves, who saw it as his “duty” to go to Iran. (Photo courtesy Steves.) voke at least some people with this message, I’m not doing my work. When I produced my show about Iran a couple of years ago, I was criticized by some for humanizing our “enemy.” I recognized that most Americans’ knowledge of Iran had been shaped by the commercial media’s circus-like coverage of the Iran hostage crisis. I saw it as my duty as a travel teacher and public TV producer to take our audience to Iran and help them understand how a nation of 70 million people could think the way they do. No underwriter would touch this program. Some stations received letters from major donors threatening to write them out of their wills for broadcasting it. But public
TV stations wouldn’t be extorted. It’s our mission to bring home a better understanding of our world. And I’m both proud and thankful to be a small part of this effort. Regardless of the city they live in, public TV viewers are hungry for intellectual stimulation and cultural understanding. During my pledge road trip, my messages for public TV audiences in red states and blue states were the same. In more conservative communities, audience members and station managers seemed to find it cathartic to hear me express a worldview they shared but weren’t comfortable expressing themselves. Even those who didn’t agree with me seemed to appreciate the respectful dialogue we had Continued on page 15
Avoid the penalty — don’t lose sight of direct-mail acquisition By Jodi Scheib
Q. What’s so great about mail-acquired donors?
he Super Bowl is over. The boys of summer have just taken the field. And March Madness has only recently subsided. That can only mean one thing to a public media development professional. It’s budget time! Many see this process as a battle more intense, more contentious, than any faced by athletes. Development professionals are asked year after year to bring in more money while spending less. Many chief financial officers are dealing with staggering declines in state, corporate and foundation support. As a result, some CFOs are trying to protect net revenue for the short term by drastically cutting — or even eliminating — their efforts to acquire new members through direct mail. Some would say that is the equivalent of a football coach starting the team’s injured star quarterback in the first game of the season. While they may win that game, the move won’t help them win the championship. For fundraising professionals who believe acquisition direct mail still belongs in their Fiscal Year 2013 Playbook, how can they respond when their CFOs pose the following frequently asked questions?
While it’s true that mail-acquired donors, on the surface, may look like all your other contributors — similar ages, household incomes and interests — they actually make up an especially valuable segment of your membership. According to John Mastrobattista, senior fundraising analyst at Blackbaud, direct-mail donors are approximately two to three times more likely to stay on your file after the first year, compared with pledge-acquired donors. (That is, about half will remain, compared with 15 to 30 percent for pledgeacquired members.) In addition, mail-acquired donors are almost twice more likely than Web-acquired donors to renew the following year. (About half renew instead of just 25 percent to 30 percent.) Mail-acquired donors are the foundation of a strong membership file. Development directors with well-balanced memberships, including mail-acquired donors, don’t panic when they don’t see a new Dr. Wayne Dyer or doo-wop pledge special coming soon, or when they are asked to pledge fewer days on-air, because they can count on their active members to continue supporting their station year after year.
Q. Why can’t we just increase the number of pledge days to acquire new donors? It’s so tempting, isn’t it? Why pay for direct mail when
we have the power of the airwaves to communicate with our donors? Pledge specials by Suze Orman and André Rieu generate new donors as well as much-needed immediate revenue. Why not grab a Target of Opportunity Pledge here, or add a weeklong pledge drive there? That will get us where we need to go, right? Wrong. On average, public television stations spent five more broadcast days fundraising in 2011 than in 2006. Stations are relying more on prerecorded pledge breaks than ever before. While these canned pitches may seem to be an overworked pledge producer’s best friend, they often push donors toward larger donations and more expensive premiums. These prerecorded breaks could never meet the needs of all stations and the various levels of basic membership, so while national pledge breaks are big revenue boosters, they simply can’t communicate the mission and value proposition of every individual station. In turn, the focus on the higher giving levels tends to add members who are motivated more by the program’s offerings and less, perhaps, by an interest in your station’s ongoing mission. Please don’t misunderstand me: On-air fundraising is a crucial part of a successful membership program. However, just like a diversified stock portfolio, the right choices are all about balance. Relying exclusively on on-air pledge as a source of donor acquisition will result in a startling decline in Continued on page 15
Rick Steves Continued from page 14
about challenging ideas. Standing on stage in a theater filled with leading citizens of cities like Des Moines or Boise, I shared European perspectives about empire, terrorism, military spending and legislating morality. I explained that I was sharing viewpoints of the European main-
Direct mail Continued from page 14
all key metrics: renewal rate, additional gift participation and lapsed recapture, just to name a few.
Q. Why not switch to email acquisition? I am often asked whether fundraisers have found success with email acquisition. Not the vast majority of nonprofits. According to the Blackbaud 2011 donorCentrics Internet and Multichannel Giving Benchmarking Report, only 16 percent of new donors make their first gift online. Think about your own giving behavior for a moment. Has an email ever prompted you to donate to an organization you’ve never supported before? Even if the email gets all the way to your inbox (which gets harder and harder for an e-solicitation to do), do you take the time to open the email, read it and respond to a charity you have never given to before? If you are like most people out there, the answer is no. The number of donors you can acquire through email pales in comparison to other techniques. Direct mail is the quickest and most cost-efficient way to build a large file of donors who will make ongoing contributions. No doubt about it, online fundraising has indeed changed forever the way we communicate with — and raise money from — our members. It should be a part of any comprehensive development strategy. Email is a great tool for communicating with your donors. E-solicitations requesting renewal and additional gifts are becoming more popular, and the response is growing. So don’t stop directing people to your website during on-air pledge drives. Keep printing your URL on all your direct-mail solicitations. Success comes from using all the tools in your toolbox. According to the Blackbaud 2011 donorCentrics Internet and Multichannel Giving Benchmarking Report, while only 3 percent of donors acquired through direct mail in 2009 gave an online gift in 2010, those who chose to give online made much larger gifts, and had more total value than those who gave only through the mail. Online gifts tend to be larger because they’re made by credit card, and credit card gifts generally are larger than those made by personal check. So continue to drive your donors to your website and keep asking for those online donations.
Q. Okay, acquisition mail is important. But we have a pretty tight year ahead. Let’s cut acquisition just for this year. Next year we will add it back to the budget. How bad can that be? In a word — very. Many stations cut back on their acquisition direct-mail programs following the economic downturn in 2008–09, and are still trying to catch up. Here’s a typical example: n Year 1 — The station cuts its acquisi-
stream— not necessarily my own — and let audiences know that Europeans are thankful for the valor and heroism of American soldiers during World War II. I also acknowledged the advantages of operating my business in America, not Europe. People who otherwise might have shut the message out seemed engaged by it. Thomas Jefferson wrote that travel makes a person wiser, if less happy. It’s not easy to hear cultural perspectives that challenge your
tion program, saves some money on mailings and ends the year with more net revenue than the previous year. The station celebrates their success over pizza! n Year 2 — As a result of reduced direct-mail acquisition in Year 1, the station has fewer donors in its active mail file. That means fewer people to solicit for additional gifts, fewer people to renew and fewer people to convert to Scheib monthly giving. And because a higher percentage of donors on the file were acquired through on-air pledge, the station can expect the response rate for these appeals (additional gift, renewal and sustainer) to decline. At the end of Year 2, the station has generated less net revenue then the previous year (and the year before that). No pizza party this year. n Year 3 — In addition to everything that happened in Year 2, the station also begins seeing eroding renewals from its appeals to lapsed members. Because more of the lapsing donors are the least likely to respond — i.e., on-air–acquired — the station can expect to see decline in lapsed members recaptured. At the end of Year 3, the station has less net revenue than the previous year’s, a shrinking active donor file and a staff that is longing for a stuffed-crust pepperoni pizza.
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KBTC-TV in Tacoma, Wash., and the state’s public-affairs cable channel, TVW, have paired up to produce a weekly book discussion and author interview show, Well Read. For each 30-minute episode, host Terry Tazioli, a former Seattle Times editor, interviews regional writers. He also talks with Mary Ann Gwinn, book editor at the Times, about other books and authors related to the show topic. The guest author for last week’s premiere episode was Kent Hartman of Portland, Ore., author of The Wrecking Crew, a nonfiction book about a group of Los Angeles musicians who weren’t credited for performances on hundreds of Top 40 hits in the 1960s and early ’70s. The show airs Tuesday evenings on both stations and streams live on their websites. — D.S.
Philosophy Talk will stage three live tapings in Oregon this month. The weekly radio show hosted by Stanford University professors John Perry and Ken Taylor will visit three college campuses near Portland April 18–20 to talk before live audiences about topics such as climate change
worldview, and there are countless alternatives on the dial for people who’d rather not expose themselves to them. But just as travel is, for me, a crowbar for prying open long-held perceptions about distant places and people, thoughtful television confronts us with new ideas, engages us with our world and has a positive impact on who we are. Clearly, that’s a service worth supporting. n
Q. How much should I expect to spend? Determining how much you should spend in directmail acquisition comes down to your station’s goals. Do you hope to grow your membership file in the coming year? Do you want to invest just enough to maintain membership size this year? In an average year, most stations mail to between 2.5 percent and 4.5 percent of households in their markets, and aim to spend between $30 and $45 to acquire each new donor through the mail. Once you know your goals, you can build a plan that works toward achieving them. It is true what they say: There can be too much of a good thing. The goal is to find the perfect balance between mailing to your previous supporters and identifying new prospects — all while monitoring your cost of acquiring a donor.
Q. What kind of return can I expect? Like everything else, your station’s results will depend on a variety of factors that are unique to your situation and your market. Factors in your control include the mailing geography, list selection, your station’s acqui-
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Rick Steves produces, writes and hosts the public TV series Rick Steves’ Europe, but his latest program is the fundraising special “Hidden Europe.” The seventh season of his TV series and two specials will be released by American Public Television this fall. Travel with Rick Steves, his public radio show, airs weekly on nearly 200 stations. For details, visit ricksteves.com.
sition-mail history, market penetration and, of course, the effectiveness of your creative and the offer you make. On average, stations are breaking even on the direct-mail acquisition costs in the donor’s second year on file. True, acquisition direct mail is an investment, but it’s a critical one that will pay off in the long run. So how do stations balance the need for net revenue with the long-term stability of the program? It’s not about how much you mail — it’s about how smart you mail. Are you mailing to the proper ZIP codes? Are you making the most of lapsed names on your file? Are you communicating the most effective message? Are you maximizing the performance of your net–revenue–generating programs? Call a timeout. Open your playbooks. Create a game plan that gives you a winning season — not only this year but in the years to come.
Jodi Scheib is v.p., fundraising, of DMW Direct, a direct-response agency based in Plymouth, Mass., that specializes in developing comprehensive fundraising programs for public media stations and other nonprofits. She joined the company in 2005 after six years as membership manager of KUAT-TV/FM in Tucson, Ariz., which won the overall PBS Development Award in 2001. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
and morality. episode about transProducer Ben Manilla gender and genderbegan working on the broadnonconforming children cast eight years ago after and their families this Perry and Taylor approached month. him with a “ghastly, but special” sample tape of the “Becoming Me” features show they hoped to bring eight families with children to public radio. KALW in ages 5 to 25 and explores Dan, a boy who participated San Francisco provides how “gender identity unfolds in this month’s In The Life. Philosophy Talk’s home studio throughout childhood, and is its original broadcast adolescence and into early partner. Carriage has grown to 80 public adulthood,” according to a news release. The radio stations. 30-minute program offers “a sensitive look Manilla described Philosophy Talk as “a into the real-life experience of families whose thinking person’s variety show. . . . [W]e’re children fall across the gender spectrum.” trying to raise the level of conversation in In the Life is distributed for pubTV broadcasts by American Public Media, and offered the media, in our own way.” Each program as a video stream at ITLMedia.org. — D.S. typically features conversation between the philosopher hosts and a guest, contributions from a “roving philosophical reporter” and a satirist, and musical interludes. Deaths|See Current.org/obituaries Stanford backs the series, which typically n Jane Krutz, 86, an advocate for produces 32 shows and up to five specials Arkansas Educational Television annually, through its humanities outreach Network for nearly 50 years, winner of initiative. a PBS National Volunteer of the Year Tapings will be staged at Oregon State award, died March 25 in Little Rock. University, Lewis & Clark University and Pacific University. “Portland is a town that n Vern Coleman, who spent 14 years as has really embraced us,” Manilla said. — R.H. an audio engineer at WGBH working on such shows as The French Chef and The In The Life, pubTV’s newsmagazine Boston Pops, died March 18 at his home about lesbian, gay, bisexual and in Marstons Mills, Mass., of leukemia.
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