Mar 25, 2010

PBS Board committee advises continuing "one station, one vote" governance

After more than three years of task force analysis, a PBS Board Nominating and Corporate Governance committee will recommend to the full board that it continue "one station, one vote" representation. The alternative would be giving large stations more votes on the PBS Board. Chair Jennifer Lawson told the panel today at headquarters in Arlington, Va., that data from professional director elections was tracked to see if there would have been different results with weighted voting, and how that would have affected composition of the board. Research showed that votes weighted by station size would not have had significant impact on the board composition; 3 percent of elections would have been affected. Lawson added that station surveys indicate lack of support for weighted voting, and a nonprofit governance expert discouraged weighted voting. Jim Pagliarini, chair of the Major Market Group of stations, said that while there are still "strong voices" in the system who feel that voting should be weighted, "it's never bubbled up as an issue of the day" at meetings of the Affinity Group Coalition, where groups of small and large stations have representatives.

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