Jul 22, 2009

Pubradio staffers score free international vacations

Two lucky pubcasters heard their names called for prizes at the recent Public Radio Development and Marketing Conference in San Diego. And they received pretty primo prizes indeed: Two free international trips from Collette Vacations. Sarah Steinberg of KNPR, Las Vegas, won two tickets for a Christmas Market Tour of Salzburg, Linz, Vienna and Prague. Steinberg, a development associate at Nevada Public Radio, told Current she was especially surprised, seeing as she'd already won two items at the confab, an iPod Touch and a solar charger. Luanne Valentin, development director at KRCL, has donated her Mexico vacation for two to the Salt Lake City station to be used as a special thank-you gift for some "very loyal listener," she said. Details are still being worked out. Valentin nearly couldn't believe her ears. "They said my name as the winner, and I looked at the two people sitting next to me," who gasped and patted her on the back. "I thought, I must have heard the right thing."

Six stations get new Ready to Learn money

CPB today announced funding for new statewide Ready to Learn projects. Six pubTV stations will work with state education agencies to provide early childhood education resources and services, according to a CPB statement. Funds will foster those partnerships to integrate RTL digital media resources into pre-K through second grade classrooms and other learning environments, such as child-care settings and after-school programs. Efforts will especially target children from low-income families. Included are KQED, San Francisco; Georgia Public Broadcasting; Iowa Public Television; KTWU, Topeka, Kan.; Maryland Public Television; and WMHT, Troy, N.Y.

Boland departing PBS to return to California: Update

John Boland, PBS's first chief content officer (Current, June 26, 2006), will leave the network after three years to return to California at the end of the year. PBS head Paula Kerger made the announcement to the system yesterday. She said in a letter to g.m.'s that Boland told her of his plans to return to California several months ago. PBS has retained executive search firm Spencer Stuart "to work closely with [COO] Michael Jones and me to identify an individual who can help us build” on Boland’s work; no word as to whether the title and responsibilities will remain the same. Boland came to headquarters from the CCO spot at KQED TV/FM in San Francisco. The top job there soon will be open as Jeff Clark, president for eight years, last month announced he'll retire June 30, 2010. In a lengthy Q&A in Current (May 14, 2007), Boland addressed a wide range of issues including Wired Science (Current, March 3, 2008), a hip, newsy show that was the first PBS series created in response to CPB’s four-year studies on primetime audience preferences; it was canceled after just 10 episodes. In the Q&A, looking back at his tenure as CCO at KQED and forward into his plans for the position at PBS, he told Current: "It is complicated and confusing at first, having all these departments reporting to one person, but over time it becomes a much richer experience for people working in multidisciplinary terms."