NABEF Announces 2016 Service to America Award Winners; Michigan Broadcaster to be Honored

NABEF-040816
On April 4, The National Association of Broadcasters Education Foundation (NABEF) announced the winners of the 2016 Celebration of Service to America Awards, recognizing outstanding community service by local broadcasters. Winners will be honored at the Celebration of Service to America dinner, held Tuesday, June 21 at the Andrew W. Mellon Auditorium in Washington, D.C.

“Local broadcasters are an essential part of the fabric of their communities,” said NABEF President Marcellus Alexander. “The NAB Education Foundation proudly salutes the recipients of this years’ Service to America Awards for their unwavering commitment to making a positive local impact.”

Among the winners nationwide, CBS Radio’s WXYT-FM (Detroit) will receive the Service to Children Award (for radio).  These awards spotlight television and radio stations for outstanding programs, campaigns and public service announcements produced for the benefit of children.

Since 2012, WXYT’s Student Heart Check program has helped raise money and awareness for student athletes at risk of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy – an acute life threatening heart condition. The vital program saves lives every year, conducting quarterly student heart screenings at local high schools where physicians participate for free and students from across the state are invited to attend. In 2015, more than 1,600 students received screenings, resulting in 234 students being advised to stop playing sports immediately. Two students were diagnosed with the condition. Produced in partnership with Beaumont Hospital and the Children’s Miracle Network, WXYT led and supported the program with multiple public service announcements, valued at $1.1 million. The informative PSAs requested $10 donations from listeners to help the program reach its ultimate goal of purchasing a mobile cardiac unit. In 2015, the campaign raised a respectable $30,000 in donations and additional sponsor outreach.

 

WQON-FM/WGRY-FM (Grayling) Partner with Client to Celebrate “100 Days of Summer”

With the thought that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, share your promotions with other broadcasters from around the state.  We’d love to hear what you’re doing!  Pictures are encouraged.  Our address is news@michmab.com.   

WQON_040816Paying no attention to the snow on the ground (this is Michigan, after all), April 5 was the first day in WQON-FM’s (Q100) “100 Days of Summer” – a season long series of parties, parades, expos and events featuring all kinds of fabulous giveaways, including the grand prize: a fully loaded Flagstaff 176LTD pop-up camper valued at $6,500.

“Whoever gets it is going to have a nice camper. It’s loaded,” said Mark Wilson, general manager at Freeway RV. “It’s under warranty, and we’ll go through the full orientation with the winner, just as if they bought it.”

Wilson said he’s excited to be working with Blarney Stone Broadcasting on this campaign after working with account executive Jeff Pahssen and President and CEO Sheryl Coyne.

“They made things absolutely wonderful,” Wilson said. “Jeff is in here all the time working with us. I’m very happy with the way things are going, couldn’t ask for more.”

That sentiment goes both ways.

“We are thrilled and proud to partner with Freeway RV in what is our biggest and most ambitious promotion since we arrived in Northern Michigan 3½ years ago,” said Maureen Barkume, Vice President of Operations for Blarney Stone Broadcasting. “It includes 20 events scheduled so far, with more to be added as this memorable summer continues.

“And this is just the beginning. We look forward to more campaigns like this in the future as we continue to develop strong and effective partnerships with businesses we can help to grow and flourish as we promote them on our airwaves throughout our continuously expanding listening area.”

Besides the beautiful camper, prizes include concert tickets, gas cards and more.   Details on the station website here.

Pure Cuba: Michigan Radio Reporters Head to Cuba

Michigan Radio's Tracy Samilton
Michigan Radio’s Tracy Samilton

Interest in Cuba has surged since the Obama administration’s announcement of a thaw in U.S.-Cuban relations. Tourism is up 15% since just last year, and American businesses are eyeing opportunities to build trade with the communist island nation. With this in mind, Michigan Radio is sending two journalists to Cuba to tell some of the stories of Michigan’s connections to the Caribbean nation. Michigan Radio reporters Tracy Samilton and Mercedes Mejia will travel to Cuba from April 8-17, and will file stories that will air on Michigan Radio and online at michiganradio.org.

Michigan Radio's Mercedes Mejia
Michigan Radio’s Mercedes Mejia

Among the stories Samilton and Mejia intend to pursue are efforts that may allow Michigan farmers to sell produce, meat and other products in Cuba; accompanying a group of Michigan State University medical students on the school’s first ever study trip to observe the country’s highly-regarded health care system; and a Michigan company overseeing a project to construct an Ernest Hemingway ​archival laboratory near the author’s historic Havana home.

“Michigan has a surprising number of cultural connections to Cuba,” said Michigan news director Vincent Duffy, “and international trade is a big part of our state’s economy. As Cuba begins to open up for business in the future, there may be opportunities for Michigan businesses. We want to find out what these opportunities may be, and share them with our audience, and hopefully be able to tell some fascinating history and cultural stories too.”

The Pure Cuba reports will be heard on Michigan Radio beginning the week of April 18. Listeners can follow the station’s Cuba coverage here. They can also join in the discussion on twitter using #PureCuba, and on Michigan Radio’s Facebook and Instagram pages.

MPRN Seeks State Capitol Correspondent

With the departure of Jake Neher for WDET-FM (Detroit), Michigan Public Radio Network (MPRN) has an opening for a State Capitol Correspondent.  The person in this position is responsible for reporting news stories for use by stations within the Michigan Association of Public Broadcasters (MAPB). The MAPB is seeking an experienced multi-platform journalist to cover the state legislature, state government and politics.

Major duties and responsibilities:

  • News reporting, including coverage of the Michigan state house, major state departments, the courts, politics and elections and other timely issues of statewide interest.
  • Production of content for broadcast and web, including spots, features, and interviews.
  • Production of digital content including: web stories that may include images and video; possible podcasts, social media posts and other content as directed by the Bureau Chief/Managing Editor.
  • Live event coverage which may include hosting Public appearances as approved by Bureau Chief/Managing Editor.

Experience required:

  • Excellent reporting, writing and editing skills, with an ability to convey the human story behind public policy issues.
  • A passion for breaking news.
  • The ability to work on tight deadlines and meet them.
  • A degree in journalism or related field, or equivalent experience.

For consideration: Please send cover letter, resume, writing and audio samples to:

MPRN Managing Editor Rick Pluta
Michigan Public Radio Network
819 N. Washington Ave
Lansing, MI 48906

Or email to: rickp@mprn.org

MPRN is an Equal Opportunity Employer

Michigan Radio Reporter Named Finalist for Journalist of the Year

Michigan Radio's Lindsey Smith
Michigan Radio’s Lindsey Smith

Michigan Radio (WUOM-FM/WFUM-FM/WVGR-FM) has announced that The Detroit Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists has named Michigan Radio reporter Lindsey Smith as a finalist for Journalist of the Year. Based in Grand Rapids, Smith is Michigan Radio’s West Michigan Reporter. Over the past year, however, she has reported extensively on the Flint water crisis, including producing a special documentary about the crisis, “Not Safe to Drink.”

The Detroit Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists recognizes the Detroit area’s top print, online, radio and television journalists. Finalists are selected by a jury of veteran journalists and educators from several news media outlets outside of Metro Detroit. Other finalists for SPJ Detroit’s Journalist of the Year include Ron Fonger, The Flint Journal; Nancy Kaffer, Detroit Free Press and Keith Naughton, Bloomberg News. The winner will announced at the Detroit SPJ’s annual banquet on April 12.

Original story by Steve Chrypinski, Marketing Director, Michigan Radio

FCC Issues Order on Multilingual EAS Alerting

fcc-logo_dark-blueOn March 30, the FCC released an order on EAS multilingual alerting. In essence, the order does two things:

1. Within one year after publication in the Federal Register of a notice announcing OMB approval, EAS Participants (broadcast stations, cable systems etc.) need to inform their SECC what steps, if any, “have been or will be taken by EAS Participants, whether individually or in conjunction with state and local emergency authorities, to disseminate, broadcast, or otherwise make available, EAS alert content to non-English speaking audiences in such audiences’ primary language.” Such descriptions shall include relevant factors that explain the degree to which alerts have been disseminated or broadcast in multiple languages. As a corollary to this reporting requirement, the FCC will require EAS Participants to cooperate with state and local emergency authorities, and SECCs, to identify such information. The mandate has no specific compliance method, but rather provides the broadest flexibility to state and local governments and EAS Participants to describe any steps that have been taken to provide multilingual EAS Alerts for their respective communities.

2. SECCs need to incorporate this information in their State EAS Plan. However, the EAS NPRM the FCC released at the end of January includes a LOT of proposals that, if adopted, will change the way Michigan and other states compile and file their state plans.  There is more forthcoming on this.

The FCC order also denies the MMTC’s long-standing petition calling for rule changes that would have, in essence, forced multilingual alerting.

The MAB will continue to keep you informed on EAS changes.

MSU Student Radio WDBM-FM (The Impact) Gets New Antenna

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Photo courtesy of WDBM General Manager Ed Glazer

Michigan State University’s student-run radio station WDBM-FM (88.9 The Impact) replaced their 30-year-old broadcast antenna last week at the tower site in East Lansing.

Ed Glazer, General Manager of the station, said the old antenna outlasted its 15-year lifespan, but in recent years had been suffering from “diminished efficiency.”

The new antenna, which cost between $10,000 and $15,000 was paid for by the station’s general fund.  Workers from JT Tower Service, Clarksville, Michigan spend several hours in mid-Michigan’s chilly spring air working high on the station’s 300-foot tower removing and replacing the old antenna.  WDBM’s antenna is mounted on one tower of the WKAR-AM directional array.

More than 100 student volunteers work at the station, which has a music format consisting of alternative, rock and independent music as well as specialty music programs.  The station has been broadcasting since 1989.

 

WBBL-FM (Grand Rapids) Hires Eric Zane for Mornings

EricZane_258Eric Zane, most recently with the Free Beer & Hot Wings Show based at WGRD-FM (Grand Rapids), has joined crosstown WBBL-FM as Morning Show host.  Zane and co-host Kyle Paffhausen can be heard from 6-10am.

Zane started in radio while in ninth grade at Paul K. Cousino High School radio station WPHS-FM in Warren, Michigan.   He states on the WBBL website, after starting on WPHS, “he was hooked.  Now that I think of it, in 30-plus years, not a ton has changed!”

The Eric Zane Show began on April 7.

WEYI-TV/WSMH-TV Names Jamie Kagol Chief Meteorologist

Jamie-Kagol_300WEYI-TV and WSMH-TV (Bay City/Flint/Saginaw) has announced that Jamie Kagol is joining the station as Chief Meteorologist.  He comes to the station from WFTX-TV (Fort Myers, FL), where he was Morning Meteorologist for six years.  Prior to  Fort Myers, he was as the Chief Meteorologist at KIFI-TV, the ABC station in Idaho Falls, Idaho. Welcome to Michigan Jamie!  With the weather in our state, we’re sure you’re in for a wild time!

WZZM-TV Wins TEGNA Community Empowerment Award

WZZM_400WZZM-TV (Grand Rapids) has been awarded the Community Empowerment Award from its parent company, TEGNA Inc., during the annual TEGNA Employee Awards ceremony at TEGNA corporate headquarters in McLean, VA.

“We had a tremendous year with excellent work being done every day across our company,” said Gracia Martore, president and CEO, TEGNA. “It is always an honor to celebrate the creative, innovative and inspiring work that better serves our customers, clients and communities. Today’s award winners set the bar very high and I congratulate them for their outstanding performance and dedication to our company.”

“The team at WZZM really focuses on community empowerment and 2015 provided some wonderful opportunities to demonstrate that commitment,” said Catherine Behrendt, Programming and Community Director. “We have a couple of long-term projects we do every year, but we also make it a point to listen to our community and respond when the situation warrants. Ours is a strong example of collaboration, advocacy, passion and pride in a community we love.”

Some examples of WZZM’s Community Empowerment:

Warm a Heart, Heat a Home
Just Drive
Make a Difference Day-Bone Marrow Registration Drive
13 Food for Families
13 Friends for Life
Toys for Tots