Category Archives: MAPB

The 50th Anniversary of the Public Broadcasting Act

Via Steve Chrypinski, Michigan Radio

President Johnson signing the Public Broadcasting Act. Source: LBJ Library photo by Yoichi Okamoto

Fifty years ago, on November 7, 1967, President Lyndon Johnson signed the Public Broadcasting Act, legislation that created America’s public broadcasting system. In signing the legislation, President Johnson expressed the hope that one day, public television and radio stations would satisfy “America’s appetite for excellence” and “enrich man’s spirit.”

The Public Broadcasting Act created the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, which today supports nearly 1,500 public media stations across the country, including Michigan Radio, by distributing federal funding amounting to roughly $1.35 per citizen, per year. The legislation helped usher in a new era of independent, non-commercial media dedicated to public service and education.

Former WUOM-FM (Ann Arbor) General Manager Edwin Burrow and Program Director Jerrold Sandler played pivotal roles in ensuring that funding for public radio was included in the Public Broadcasting Act, which was originally written just for public television. Those efforts helped ensure the financial future of both National Public Radio and the hundreds of local stations that make up the public radio system today. You can read more about how the Public Television Act became the Public Broadcasting Act in this 2005 story from Current.


Michigan Radio Brings ‘Stateside’ to East Lansing

Via Steve Chrypinski, Michigan Radio

A photo from Stateside’s live show in Detroit in 2016.

Michigan Radio’s (WUOM-FM/WFUM-FM/WVGR-FM) daily talk show, Stateside, hosted by Cynthia Canty, travels to East Lansing today, November 2, for a special live show from 7:00 – 8:30 p.m.

The show will be recorded in front of a live audience at the Kellogg Center auditorium on the Michigan State University campus. Segments from the live show will be broadcast during future Stateside programs in the upcoming weeks.

Among the scheduled guests on the show will be longtime Lansing mayor, former Democratic gubernatorial candidate and “America’s Angriest Mayor” Virg Bernero who will discuss his legacy, the strides Lansing has made and the challenges that remain. Other topics discussed on the show will be an MSU program that trains veterans in beekeeping, new ideas for teaching from a Michigan Hall of Fame teacher, why Lansing is a landing spot for so many refugees, and a look at state politics with It’s Just Politics hosts Zoe Clark and Rick Pluta. The show will also feature live music provided by the LCC Constellations Jazz Sextet.

WNMU’s Walton on Candidate Forum Panel

Nicole Walton

On October 24, WNMU-FM (Marquette) News Director Nicole Walton participated on a media panel along with representatives from the Marquette Mining Journal and WLUC-TV for a candidate forum between two candidates: Democrat Sara Cambensey and Republican Rich Rossway.  Both are running for the 109th District State Representative seat formerly held by John Kivela who died earlier this year.

The forum aired on both WNMU-TV & FM as well as WLUC-TV.

WCMU Presents “Ask The DNR”

On Thursday Night, October 19, WCMU Public Television continues their long-running “Ask The Experts” series with a program featuring guests from Michigan’s Department of Natural Resources.

The live-hour program allows viewers to ask anonymous questions to the in-studio DNR specialists. Viewers can call, Tweet or Facebook questions to the show.  The show airs at 7:30 p.m.

Upcoming episodes of the show include:

Thursday, October 26, 2017 “Ask The Realtors”
Thursday, November 2, 2017 “Ask The Home Energy Specialists”
Thursday, November 9, 2017 “Ask The Veterans”
Thursday, November 16, 2017 “Ask The Financial Planners”

The station also has an archive of past programs available in its website.

WGVU Presents Fall Fund Raiser

WGVU Public Media (Grand Rapids) will hold their annual “Food, Wine and All that Jazz” fundraiser October 27.  Supporters can enjoy samples from over 400 of the finest domestic wines and beers along with gourmet food selections all for one ticket price.

The event will take place at the Grand Rapids Public Museum and will also feature live jazz.

For more information on the event, click here.

WKAR Announces NewsTalk and New Programming

WKAR Public Media from Michigan State University has announced the launch of WKAR NewsTalk, a fresh radio lineup of new shows and longtime favorites for newshounds, talk radio junkies and global citizens of Michigan’s Capital Region.

WKAR NewsTalk is heard on AM 870 during daylight hours and streaming around the clock on New additions to the schedule are Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me!, This American Life,
Hidden Brain and It’s Been a Minute.

“There’s a growing audience for fact-based news and reasoned talk that explores the complex issues we face today,” said Peter Whorf, WKAR Radio Station Manager. “This new lineup showcases the journalistic excellence of the BBC and NPR, combined with the analysis and deep-dive conversations of brand new programs such as Shankar Vedantam’s Hidden Brain and Sam Sanders’ It’s Been a Minute. I’m especially eager to share with our listeners the
premieres of NPR’s newest offerings.”

The nation’s best mix of classical music, plus local and NPR news, continues to be heard on 90.5 FM in the Capital Region. Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me! and This American Life have also been added to the 90.5 FM schedule.

This American Life presents news stories on a weekly theme, with an occasional comedy routine thrown in. The show airs on WKAR NewsTalk Saturdays at noon and on 90.5 FM Fridays at 6 p.m.

Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me! is NPR’s weekly hour-long quiz program, hosted by Peter Sagal. Each week listeners test their knowledge against some of the best and brightest in the news and entertainment world while figuring out what’s real news and what’s made up. The show airs on WKAR NewsTalk Sundays at 2 p.m. and on 90.5 FM Saturdays at 10 a.m.

It’s Been a Minute with Sam Sanders provides an irreverent, casual space for listeners trying to keep up with the pace of current events. Sanders talks with journalists, newsmakers, and listeners about news, popular culture, and the internet — stories big and small, about all subjects, with equal vigor and interest. The show airs on WKAR NewsTalk Saturdays at 2 p.m. and Sundays at 8 p.m.

Hidden Brain uses science and storytelling to help curious people understand the world, current events and themselves. Hosted by popular Morning Edition contributor Shankar Vedantam, the show airs on WKAR NewsTalk Saturdays at 1 p.m. and Sundays at 3 p.m.

WKAR NewsTalk continues to be the Capital Region destination for BBC Newshour, BBC World, Current State with Reginald Hardwick, Current Sports with Al Martin, Ondas En Español with El Chayo, plus Morning Edition and All Things Considered.

Listeners in East Lansing and Meridian Township can now tune in to WKAR NewsTalk 24 hours day, thanks to an FCC project aimed at enabling AM stations to broadcast at night using FM translators. For those in range (an estimated 50,000 listeners) the service can be heard on 94.5 FM.

WNMU to Hold Community Open House

Northern Michigan University’s WNMU-FM and TV (Marquette) is holding a community open house of their facilities on September 23.  Listeners are viewers can:

  • Come behind the scenes at WNMU, meet the staff and tour the Public Radio 90 & Public TV 13 studios that you help make possible.
  • Tour the Center for Teaching & Learning.
  • See the Olson Library renovation plans and check out the new Digital Media Tutoring Center.
  • Enjoy bagels and books and a local author visit for family time.
  • Share some lovin’ with the Superiorland Pet Partners therapy dogs.
  • Learn about the historical documents that the NMU Archives holds.
  • And more!

The event will be held from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Media Sandbox, WKAR Awarded $500K from MSUFCU

A collective $500,000 has been awarded to the Media Sandbox and WKAR from the Michigan State University Federal Credit Union  to support and engage the mid-Michigan and Spartan communities and provide new learning opportunities.

“Funding from MSUFCU offers students in the Media Sandbox new opportunities for experiential learning,” said Prabu David said, dean of MSU’s College of Communication Arts & Sciences’ (ComArtSci).  “Street Teams will help nonprofit organizations communicate their services and needs to the people they serve.”

WKAR, already well-known for its strong schedule of early childhood educational programming, has also received $250,000 from MSUFCU over a 5-year period. With these funds, WKAR will lead children’s media research and content creation, and continue offering experiential learning opportunities for ComArtSci students.

“This is a transformative gift for WKAR, allowing us to advance our educational efforts in support of schools, parents, caregivers and children in our community,” said Susi Elkins, general manager and director of broadcasting for WKAR. “We are grateful to MSUFCU for their commitment to education and their belief in our ability to make a difference with their support.”

“No other college or unit on campus has access to the community like WKAR,” said Julie Sochay, WKAR content and community engagement manager. “With four TV stations, two radio stations, a website and digital streaming, WKAR is part of what makes Michigan’s Capital Region a vibrant community.”

Consistently a leader in academics and media, the station often employs ComArtSci students for help behind the scenes with their news, radio and television programs. The station works with up to 60 students each year.

“The funding from MSUFCU will allow WKAR to expand this opportunity to even more ComArtSci students,” Sochay said.

In addition, the funds will allow WKAR to continue engaging the local community with its original programming.

“WKAR has a long history of community engagement based on a strong schedule of early childhood educational programs,” Sochay said . “The MSUFCU gift will allow WKAR to grow our new WKAR Family educational platform, to offer more programming, content and a focus backed by academic research and real world applications.”

WCMU Welcomes NPR’s Melissa Block

Melissa Block

WCMU Public Media has announced that NPR Special Correspondent Melissa Block will be visiting Northern Michigan with a September 14 event at the Traverse City Opera House.  Block will discuss the changing landscape of the media.

The event is part of WCMU Public Media’s 50th anniversary celebration.

The City Opera House event is a way for the network to get “out and about” in the communities it serves, said Ken Kolbe, WCMU Public Media General Manager. The Traverse City area has one of the network’s largest concentrations of listeners and viewers, he added.

“We’ve been trying to do more community outreach, and bringing in a prominent person from NPR has been a goal,” Kolbe said.

During her 30-year career, Block has served as a correspondent, covering everything from the 9/11 terrorist attacks to Hurricane Katrina and as a long-time host of “All Things Considered.” Along the way she earned many of broadcast journalism’s top honors. Currently she’s a special correspondent who travels the country for her reports.

In Traverse City she’ll reflect on media’s changing face and answer audience questions.

Tickets for the event are free and include a public reception following Block’s appearance. To reserve, visit

WEMU’s Linda Yohn Wins National Jazz Presenter Of The Year Award

Linda Yohn

This category is for a jazz broadcaster with exceptional presentation and communications skills for an outstanding individual who hosts or produces a jazz program. It’s the first time Yohn has won this particular award; she has been named National Jazz Programmer 5 separate times since 2008. Yohn, who is celebrating her 30th anniversary with WEMU this year, is retiring in December.

“I can’t think of a better honor for Linda during this significant anniversary year,” said WEMU’s General Manager, Molly Motherwell. “Not only is it a fitting tribute to her outstanding skills as a jazz presenter but it also shows the impact she has made here at WEMU, which is celebrating its 40th anniversary as a jazz broadcaster. WEMU is one of the top rated jazz/news stations in public broadcasting and that is due largely to Linda’s tireless acquisition and promotion of all things jazz. We’re so proud of her and what she’s accomplished, which now includes this award.”

“There is no one who works harder or who has meant more to the jazz and music community in our region,” said Walter Kraft, VP of Communications for EMU. “Linda Yohn is one of a kind, and her work has benefited WEMU, Eastern Michigan University, and our entire community. Congratulations to Linda on another great honor.”
JazzWeek was founded in August 2001 after trade publication The Gavin Report ceased publishing a jazz radio chart, and has published weekly jazz radio airplay charts since that time.